On October 17, 2023, Reddit announced it would stop supporting its crypto rewards program, including the popular MOON token used on the r/cryptocurrency subreddit. This caused MOON’s price to crash over 80% almost overnight.
But the token still found new life afterward when the moderators of r/cryptocurrency pledged to take over management and impose a hard cap on supply. Now MOON is up over 130%, showing there is still demand for a social token aligned with one of Reddit’s most popular communities.
But why did Reddit abandon MOON and other crypto rewards programs in the first place? MOON was originally launched in 2020 as part of Reddit’s “Community Points” initiative. The tokens were meant to give users ownership in their communities, with users earning MOON by contributing positively to r/cryptocurrency discussions. The more upvotes you got, the more MOON you received when they were distributed every month.
MOON enabled new capabilities like tipping other users and buying special profile items. Holders could also vote in governance polls that influenced the community’s direction. So MOON drove participation while also letting users monetize their content.
For two years, MOON gained traction within the fast-growing r/cryptocurrency subreddit. But ultimately Reddit decided the resources required to support Community Points weren’t worth it. They cited “scalability limitations” in taking the program cross-platform. The regulatory uncertainties around crypto also gave them pause.
While discontinuing MOON, Reddit said the “spirit” would live on through new initiatives like its Contributor Program. That rewards users with cash payouts based on the karma they earn. But only r/cryptocurrency’s mod team stepped up to preserve MOON itself.
After Reddit dropped the token, the moderators revealed a plan to fully decentralize it. This included burning the existing supply down to 83 million tokens to impose a hard cap. Furthermore, the mod team is working on implementing features like a flair bot to display MOON totals next to usernames and a tip bot for seamless MOON tipping.
So MOON will now persist as a fan-governed social token representing the r/cryptocurrency community. Reddit admins may renounce the Moons contract by month-end, ensuring permanence and decentralization. This move means no further creation of any new MOON, while existing exchange listings and trading capabilities remain unaffected.
This new grassroots energy could ultimately make MOON stronger than if Reddit had continued half-heartedly supporting it.
While MOON’s monetary value crashed initially, speculation has returned now that supplies are fixed. A sign that investors still see potential upside in community tokens with niche use cases. Even if their original corporate backers walk away.