MEME ($MEME): A DeFi Joke?

MEME ($MEME) is a hybrid between decentralised finance (DeFi) and non-fungible token (NFT) on the Ethereum blockchain. NFTs are tokens that represent unique digital items with verifiable scarcity. They can be used to represent digital ownership as with the case of rare cryptocurrency art. MEME allows users to stake tokens to farm limited edition NFT memes.


MEME started out as a meme. Yes, it was a joke made by Jordan Lyall, the DeFi Product Lead at ConsenSys. Lyall’s Twitter post joked about an offering that could allow easy and fast (less than five minutes) creation of a DeFi platform.

A Twitter user took the joke seriously and created MEME coin. “I was commenting on the silliness of it all. But in doing that, I’ve created the very thing I sought to destroy,” Lyall commented after the coin went live.

The birth of memes dates back to 1976 when the word appeared on ‘The Selfish Gene’, a book by Richard Dawkins. In the book, memes are portrayed as ideas quickly spread from one person to another within a community. They have since found their way into our daily lives to refer to the viral spread of information on the internet.

What is MEME?

MEME is a decentralized project connecting the DeFi world with NFTs through yield farming or liquidity mining. The network stresses that it does not offer coins for sale but allows farming. The system was launched on August 14, 2020, and has since attracted a ton of attention from the crypto community.

MEME’s Meteoric Rise

The genesis of the project’s meteoric rise dates back to Lyall’s tweet, which garnered 1,200 likes and a high number of retweets within minutes. After its launch, it was listed on CoinGecko with a hard cap of 28,000 tokens.

It was followed by an exclusive Telegram airdrop that was done 30 minutes after launch. After launch, the protocol’s Telegram community grew to over 3,000 participants. In its first few days, MEME reached a 24-hour trading volume of $1.2 million with a single coin changing hands at $40.

MEME token
MEME token (Image credit: Coingecko)

Roughly a month later, MEME was trading at $795, had a one-day trading volume of $8.8 million, and a market capitalization of $18.7 million. Also, the coin moved from position 610 in early September 2020, to 276 as of September 18, 2020, based on market cap.

By September 18, MEME token holders were roughly 1,400 while the NFT holders were about 700.

How to farm MEME?

Farming requires staking MEME and then receiving rare NFT versions. This increases liquidity mining opportunities for DeFi enthusiasts. As with other DeFi systems that support yield mining, farming MEME involves liquidity mining pools.

Note that the NFTs up for grabs are created by a select number of artists. The first digital artist listed is Sven Eberwein, a popular digital artist living in Los Angeles.

MEME Artist - Sven Eberwein
MEME Artist – Sven Eberwein (Image credit:

Eberwein combines internet culture with computer graphics. Sven “works of the internet, by the internet, for the internet.” The artist’s first MEME-themed collections are titled ‘Don’t buy MEME,’ ‘Volatile Pineapples,’ The MEME Shitcoin Cycle,’ and ‘Crashtest (Because it will).’

According to Eberwein, MEME’s uniqueness comes from being the first to capture the DeFi and meme worlds.

MEME farming pools

Genesis pool

MEME farming pool - Genesis
MEME farming pool – Genesis (Image credit:

This accommodates the staking of MEME tokens.

  • The first step is to access the pool from .
  • Then the next step is to unlock your Web3 wallet. Note that Web3 wallets are just browser functionalities added to the standard self-custody wallets to allow access and usage of decentralized applications (Dapps). Wallets in the Web3 ecosystem include Metamask, imToken, Huobi, AlphaWallet, Enjin, infinito, Opera, Trust Wallet, Coinbase, Dexwallet, Ledger, exodus, Trezor, and Mist.
  • Approve MEME
  • Enter between a maximum of 5 and a minimum of 1 MEME token. Rewards from farming on the platform are called pineapples. For instance, staking 5 MEME results in five pineapples per 24 hours.
  • Claim NFT. This can only be done when the required number of pineapples has been farmed.

MEME Genesis LP pool

MEME farming pool - Genesis LP
MEME farming pool – Genesis LP (Image credit:

Here, Uniswap V2 liquidity pool (UNIV2-LP) tokens are staked to earn pineapples.

  • To get the tokens, stake Ether (ETH) and MEME tokens on the Uniswap pool. However, to receive approximately 0.0002 UNIV2-LP tokens, one needs to stake roughly 50 MEME coins and ETH of equal value.
  • Access to join the LP Genesis pool.
  • Unlock your wallet.
  • Approve the tokens from Uniswap and specify your stake amount. The pool supports a maximum of 0.0002 and a minimum of 0.00004 UNIV2-LP tokens. As with the previous pool, the minimum amount staked births one pineapple per day while the maximum stake results in five pineapples per 24 hours.
MEME Genesis Economics
MEME Genesis Economics (Image credit: Don’t Buy $MEME Medium article)

A pineapple farmer can claim their NFT of choice when they have enough pineapples. Note that pineapples cannot be shared between pools and the amount staked must not exceed the set limits to avoid failed transactions.

NFTs earned from mining MEME can be sold on OpenSea, a marketplace for trading NFTs and virtual currency collectibles. OpenSea lists assets created using Ethereum’s ERC-721 and ERC-1155 standards.

MEME at OpenSea
MEME at OpenSea (Image credit: OpenSea)


As with other non-custodial financial systems, MEME handles governance issues through a decentralized autonomous organization called MemeDAO. To be a member, you have to hold a minimum of 100 MEME tokens. Towards the end of August 2020, $1.7 million worth of capital was locked in the DAO.


In the cryptocurrency community, memes are used as a universal language and MEME joins others like Doge and CoronaCoin that started as a joke but attracted interest from the crypto community.

MEME’s uniqueness comes from its connection with the DeFi and NFT world, which adds a new reward stream for yield farmers. However, it’s yet to be seen how long ‘a joke’ can be taken seriously.

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Vivian is a Web3 Correspondent with a passion for blockchain technology and its potential to revolutionize the world. She has been covering the space since 2018, writing articles and giving talks on the subject. Vivian is particularly interested in how blockchain can be used to create more equitable and secure systems of governance and finance. She has a degree in computer science and has worked with several startups in the space.