This Week on Crypto Twitter: Roaring Kitty Returns, Attacker Bares All


This week on Crypto Twitter was chock-full of personalities stealing the show—some for positive reasons, others for… darker ones. 

Last Sunday, a years-dormant Twitter account belonging to Keith Gill, aka Roaring Kitty—the meme stock influencer best known for architecting the short squeeze of GameStop (GME) stock in 2021—suddenly reactivated, sending Twitter and financial markets alike into a frenzy. 

Over the following days, the account posted scores of movie clips adorned with finance-themed captions—as Roaring Kitty used to do routinely before going radio silent across all social media accounts in mid-2021. 

The frenzy immediately pumped meme stocks like GME and AMC multiple times over in value, as well as related meme coins. (By the week’s end, though, most impacted assets had plummeted back down to earth.)

Despite the fact that the tweets pumped stocks and meme coins by billions of dollars, it remained unclear throughout the week whether Gill was actually behind them. The influencer did not post any videos or photos of himself, and his Reddit and YouTube accounts—once frequently used—remain silent. 

In the vacuum of verifiability, some—including the conceptual digital artist Shloms—seized on the opportunity, claiming (without evidence) that they were behind the Roaring Kitty posts. 

On Tuesday, in grimmer news, a developer of Ethereum coin mixer Tornado Cash—Alexey Pertsev—was found guilty of money laundering by a Dutch court, and sentenced to over 5 years in prison. 

The reaction on Twitter was swift, with crypto industry leaders decrying the sentence as overly punitive and unjust. Many in the industry have long praised Tornado Cash as a tool crucial to ensuring the privacy of crypto users. 

On Thursday, Pertsev filed to appeal the conviction. 

That same day, perhaps the most bizarre narrative of the week unfolded when, in real time, denizens of Crypto Twitter discovered that wildly popular meme coin generator had been hacked—and that the hacker, a disgruntled former employee of the protocol, was live-tweeting about the exploit. 

Minute by minute, crypto users pieced together that the man really was the hacker—and that he was a fully doxxed Canadian citizen. Prominent industry figures who knew the hacker attempted to reach out to him, concerned. (The hacker drained $2 million in SOL from, then airdropped it in pieces to random NFT and token holders.)

In a surreal sequence, as posted that it was looking into the hack and would cooperate with government authorities in investigating it, the self-proclaimed attacker appeared on a Twitter Spaces and announced that he had wanted to “kill” the protocol because it had “inadvertently hurt people for a long time.”

Amid the saga, the hacker remained incredibly active online, openly acknowledging to anyone who asked that he was likely to face prison time—and just didn’t care. 

Edited by Andrew Hayward

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