What is Dogecoin (DOGE)?

A beginner's guide to DOGE 🐶

Dogecoin is a decentralized, peer-to-peer digital currency that originated from a popular Shiba Inu dog meme.

Dogecoin’s native crypto token, DOGE, is classified within the Media and Entertainment sector of the cryptocurrency industry, under the memecoin category.

Memecoins capitalize on social media virality and community engagement to attract new users, often gaining rapid traction through humorous content, memes, and endorsements from influential online personalities.

Since its inception as a parody project in 2013, Dogecoin has become an integral part of the crypto ecosystem. Its playful approach has garnered millions of supporters, including celebrity endorsements from Elon Musk, Snoop Dogg, and many others.

Kraken offers clients the opportunity to buy and trade DOGE, along with over 250 other types of cryptocurrencies.

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How does Dogecoin work? ⚙️

The Dogecoin blockchain operates on a decentralized peer-to-peer network, enabling permissionless global transactions. Like Bitcoin (BTC), Dogecoin operates on its own blockchain, maintaining a complete history of all transactions. Numerous computers, called blockchain nodes, maintain independent copies of this ledger and collectively help to secure the blockchain.

The Dogecoin project consists of four key components:

  1. Consensus Mechanism: Dogecoin uses a Proof-of-Work (PoW) consensus mechanism, where miners compete against one another using specialized equipment to win the right to propose new blocks. In 2014, Dogecoin transitioned from the SHA-256 to the Scrypt algorithm, a less energy-intensive hashing system that enabled merge mining with cryptocurrencies like Litecoin (LTC).

  2. Unlimited Supply: Unlike many cryptocurrencies, Dogecoin has no maximum supply. Over 145 billion DOGE are currently in circulation, with approximately 5 billion new coins entering circulation every year. This choice was intended to encourage microtransactions and tipping using DOGE.

  3. Fast Transactions and Low Fees: Dogecoin’s features make it efficient for microtransactions and everyday use.

  4. Community: The heart of Dogecoin lies in its active, engaged community, which often rallies around charitable causes and social projects, using DOGE to fund initiatives such as sending a Jamaican bobsled team to the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics.

Dogecoin’s key innovations ✨

Dogecoin's main innovation lies in its strong community support and use as a tipping currency online, promoting generosity and lightheartedness in the cryptocurrency space. Key aspects include:

Community-driven: Dogecoin has one of the most passionate and active communities in the crypto space, fostering camaraderie, humor, and inclusivity.

Tipping culture: Dogecoin is popular as a tipping currency on platforms like Reddit and X, providing a simple, fun, and low-cost way to reward creators.

Philanthropy and charity: The Dogecoin community regularly donates to various charitable causes, redefining the image of cryptocurrency by demonstrating its potential for positive social impact.

Meme-based branding: Dogecoin's Shiba Inu dog mascot and lighthearted branding make it more approachable and less intimidating for newcomers to the crypto space.

Inflationary model: Unlike Bitcoin's deflationary model, Dogecoin has a controlled inflationary supply that is meant to encourage spending and tipping rather than hodling.

What problem does Dogecoin solve? 🏆

Originally created as a mockery of other cryptocurrencies, Dogecoin was not intended to solve a specific problem.

Instead, it emerged as a fun, more accessible alternative to Bitcoin, aiming to appeal to a broader audience beyond the core cryptocurrency community. 

The project continues to provide an approachable entry point into the often complex world of cryptocurrencies, breaking down barriers with humor and simplicity.


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Why buy DOGE? 🤷‍♂️

Someone may wish to purchase DOGE for the following reasons:

  • Diversify their long-term investment strategy: Adding DOGE to a diversified crypto portfolio can help to mitigate overall risk. 

  • Pay for transaction fees: DOGE can be used to pay for transaction fees on Dogecoin and reward miners for keeping the network secure.

  • Peer-to-peer transactions: Dogecoin facilitates fast and direct transfers, which can be appealing to users seeking efficient and borderless transactions.

  • Cashless transactions: As adoption grows, more merchants are accepting DOGE as payment for goods and services. 

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For more information on how to buy Dogecoin in 3 easy steps, check out our guide, How to buy Dogecoin (DOGE).

How to use DOGE? 🧐

DOGE is primarily used to pay for transaction fees on the Dogecoin blockchain, but holders can also use DOGE to:

  • Tip content creators: DOGE is often used to tip content creators on platforms like Reddit, X, and Twitch to support their channels.

  • Make online purchases: Many online retailers and businesses are starting to accept DOGE as a payment method. Examples include Tesla and the Dallas Mavericks store.

  • Donate to charities and causes:  Holders can use DOGE to crowdfund various charitable causes. Organizations such as The Water Project, The Giving Block and The American Cancer Society accept Dogecoin donations. 

  • Participate in online communities: DOGE can be used to support/reward others for making contributions in online forums or social media channels.

Dogecoin origin 🌍

Dogecoin was founded and launched in the US on December 6, 2013 by Jackson Palmer and Billy Markus.

Jackson Palmer 

  • Title: Co-founder

  • Professional Background/Qualifications: Prior to co-founding Dogecoin, Palmer held several marketing-related roles at companies like Business Catalyst and Adobe.

  • Key Contributions: Palmer conceptualized the idea of Dogecoin as a joke amid the 2013 crypto frenzy. He bought the dogecoin.com domain and created a splash screen featuring the coin's mascot, a Shiba Inu dog from the "Doge" meme, which helped the project gain viral attention. Palmer's marketing savvy and humorous take on cryptocurrency helped Dogecoin stand out and quickly garner a passionate community.

Billy Markus

  • Title: Co-founder

  • Professional Background/Qualifications: A software engineer based in Portland, Oregon, Markus created Dogecoin's technical foundation.

  • Key Contributions: Markus modified the existing Luckycoin (fork of Litecoin) codebase to create Dogecoin, adjusting parameters such as the block time and total supply. Markus' intention was to create a fun cryptocurrency that could reach a broader demographic than Bitcoin. He sought to distance it from the controversial histories of other coins and capitalized on the then-popular Doge meme for its branding.

Dogecoin did not have traditional funding rounds as it was not created with the intention of being a commercial venture. It was launched directly to the public without raising funds through Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) or private funding.

The original Dogecoin founders disbanded many years ago, leaving Dogecoins’ development in the hands of its ever-growing community of users.

Various community-driven initiatives and groups have supported Dogecoin, using it for charitable donations, crowdfunding, and other activities. In 2021, the Dogecoin Foundation was re-established with a renewed focus on supporting the ecosystem, trademarking protection, and promoting the future development of DOGE.

DOGE tokenomics 📊

Dogecoin's launch did not involve a conventional token distribution or sale. Instead, Dogecoin was freely distributed to users as a tipping currency on the internet, and through mining. There was no initial allocation to founders or early investors as seen in many other cryptocurrency projects.

Dogecoin's issuance follows a somewhat unique schedule compared to other cryptocurrencies. At genesis, on December 6, 2013, Dogecoin had a random block reward. This was later fixed in March 2014 (at the 100,000th block) to a flat 10,000 DOGE per block. This change was part of an update to help miners support the network indefinitely:

  • Block Rewards: Miners receive 10,000 DOGE for each block they mine. This reward does not halve like in Bitcoin’s issuance schedule. Instead, it is designed to create a steady, perpetual inflation rate of around 5 billion DOGE per year, adding to the existing supply.

  • Mining: New coins are issued via block rewards to miners. The mining process repeats approximately once every minute (Dogecoin's block time), which is significantly faster than Bitcoin’s 10-minute block time.

This perpetual inflation is a key aspect of Dogecoin's design. It allows DOGE to primarily be used for tipping and for charitable donations, encouraging spending and distribution.

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