Ordinals are a type of digital inscription that are embedded in the Bitcoin blockchain. They are created by a project called Ordinals, which aims to explore the artistic and cultural potential of Bitcoin inscriptions. Ordinals are unique and scarce, as there can only be one inscription per Bitcoin transaction. Each Ordinal has a number that corresponds to its position in the Bitcoin ledger, and a message that can be anything from a quote, a poem, a code, or a puzzle.
Ordinals are valuable because they are rare, expressive, and immutable. They are also collectible, as some Ordinals have historical or artistic significance. For example, Ordinal 1 is the Genesis Ordinal, which contains the message “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.” Ordinal 21,000 is the Halving Ordinal, which marks the third Bitcoin halving event that occurred on May 11, 2020. Ordinals can be traded on a secondary market called Runes, where they are priced in Bitcoin.
How did the airdrop happen and who is behind it?
On Sunday, January 21, 2024, someone airdropped 21,000 Ordinals to random Bitcoin users as part of a mysterious game. The airdrop was announced by a message inscribed in Ordinal 56,754,110, which reads:
“A technological arms race has begun—21,000 cutting-edge RSICs, manufactured in our factory, are being sent from our distribution centers to the Ordinals community. The RSICs are designed for the sole purpose of securing a bag of runes.”
The message also contains a link to a website called Runecoin, which claims to be a new cryptocurrency that is “powered by Ordinals”. The website invites users to claim their free Runecoins by entering their Bitcoin address and solving a captcha. The website also features a countdown timer, a leaderboard, and a mysterious logo.
The identity and motive of the airdropper are unknown, but some speculate that it is a marketing stunt, a social experiment, or a scam. The airdrop is unrelated to the official Ordinals project, which has distanced itself from the Runecoin website and warned users to be careful.
What are the risks and opportunities of the airdrop?
The airdrop of 21,000 Ordinals has sparked curiosity and excitement among Bitcoin users, who are eager to find out more about the Runecoin game and the value of their Ordinals. Some users have reported receiving Ordinals with interesting messages, such as quotes from famous people, riddles, jokes, or codes. Some users have also claimed their Runecoins and joined the leaderboard, hoping to win prizes or rewards.
However, the airdrop also poses some risks and challenges for the recipients. First, the Runecoin website may be a phishing attempt or a malware infection, as it asks users to enter their Bitcoin address and solve a captcha. Users should be wary of giving away their personal information or downloading any files from the website. Second, the Runecoin cryptocurrency may be worthless or fraudulent, as it has no clear use case, governance, or security. Users should not invest or trade their Runecoins without doing proper research and due diligence. Third, the airdrop may affect the value and scarcity of Ordinals, as it floods the market with a large number of inscriptions. Users should be careful of selling or buying Ordinals based on the hype or speculation.
The airdrop of 21,000 Ordinals is a mysterious and intriguing event that has captured the attention of the Bitcoin community. It is unclear what the airdropper’s intention and endgame are, but it is certain that the airdrop has created a new wave of interest and activity around Ordinals and Runes. Whether the airdrop is a blessing or a curse for the recipients remains to be seen.