ARMY coin: Is it linked to BTS?
There’s been some controversy involving ARMY coin and K-Pop stars BTS. Let's take a look…
The management team behind the Korean pop music superstars BTS has ordered a new cryptocurrency to stop using the group’s image to promote itself. Hybe, the agency that works with BTS, has issued a statement saying that the group had nothing to do with the recently launched ARMY token. But what is ARMY coin? Is it legit, or a scam of some kind?
What is ARMY coin?
The ARMY coin cryptocurrency was launched in late October on the Singapore-based Bitget exchange. At present, it cannot be bought with fiat currency but purely with the USDT (tether) stablecoin. There is a total supply of 10 billion ARMY coins and, at present, it is only available on Bitget. The Straits Times reported that, at one point, its price surged by more than 5,000%. According to the price chart used by Bitget, the army coin price was around 0.007USDT on 27 October but rallied to just under 8USDT on 28 October. As of early afternoon on 1 November, the Army coin value was around 2.37USDT.
Those are the bare facts of the ARMY coin cryptocurrency. When it was launched it used images of the K-Pop stars to help promote it, this drew the attention of the Hybe agency
Hybe warns K-pop stans
The organisation said in a statement: “The agency has no connection with this cryptocurrency and it was listed without any discussion with us. Furthermore, photos of BTS were used to promote this cryptocurrency without the permission of Big Hit Music.”
Hybe said it was considering taking legal action on the matter and urged people who had lost money through investing in ARMY coin to take action, adding in the statement: “We are currently looking into the legal violations in this case, including the cryptocurrency’s infringement on our artists’ portrait rights without permission from or discussion with the agency. We will take legal action against all infringements and violations.”
The agency also accused the person or persons behind ARMY of implying the token was linked to BTS, saying: “Currently, we have confirmed that the cryptocurrency has been sharing false information with traders in group chats such as, ‘This was made for BTS’ and ‘This exists to maximise BTS’ profits.’
“We ask that everyone be careful in order to avoid falling victim. If you have been financially victimised, please immediately inform the nearby police or investigation agency.”
BTS is one of the biggest acts in the world, with its May 2021 single Butter breaking records for the most Spotify streams and most YouTube views in its first 24 hours. The seven-piece act has had three UK top 10 singles and sold more than 20 million physical albums worldwide, making it the most commercially successful Korean band of all time. The group’s fans are nicknamed the BTS Army, which gives its name to the new crypto.
ARMY coin explained
As of 1 November, there was a message at the top of the ARMY coin website saying: “This project has absolutely no connection with official fan club ARMY and BTS’ talent company Hybecorp. Instead we would like to point out that this project was made out of pure dedication towards BTS as fans.”
There appears to be little or no information about on who set up the ARMY token. Though it is reasonable to assume this person is a fan of BTS it might also be someone looking to exploit K-pop fans into handing over their money, or at least, their tether coins, and then running off with it. Being generous and assuming the person who set up the token is doing so out of a love of BTS and their music, one thing to note is that on the crypto’s website BTS are referred to as ‘oppas’. This is a Korean term meaning ‘elder brother’, which is used by younger females to refer to older males whom they are close to. So, it might be fair to assume the founder of the token is female – or it could be someone playing at being a starstruck fangirl in an attempt to win trust.
While there is nothing wrong with a pseudonymous founder (after all, bitcoin’s Satoshi Nakamoto is pretty much agreed to be a pseudonym), there is no name or contanct details linked with the creation of ARMY coin. Depending on perspective this could seem like an oversight or a red flag.
The founder or founders of ARMY coin indicate that they had some experience in selling BTS merchandise, writing: “Three years ago … I might had been penny-less [sic] but was a developer with big dreams, thus started off my fan merchandise e-commerce platform business with a friend…which didn't go as we intended, in other words business went out of service… Back then it was extremely difficult to get hold of genuine K-pop star goods. So saw the market for K-pop star goods.”
While we have no idea where the person behind ARMY is from, it appears English is not their first language. The token’s presence on Bitget might suggest the funder is from somewhere in southeast Asia, but that is only an assumption. This also might be a red flag because the less we know about the founder or founders, the harder it is to hold them accountable.
The other thing to point out is that there does not appear to be a proper white paper for the ARMY coin. Most cryptocurrencies usually have something, which can be anything from two or three pages of information to much more. ARMY coin, on the other hand, just has a single webpage. This might be because the founder has very little experience in the world of crypto but, even so, this too should be a warning for people. There is some information on the website itself. This de facto white paper says that the plan behind the token is that 50% of it, the sum total mined, will go to a BTS wallet. It is unclear whether this is an actual crypto wallet controlled either by BTS themselves or their management, or whether it is something the founder has set up themselves. It also says that 10% will go to the alleged team behind the token, about which there are no details, held on the Ethereum network. A further 20% is reserved for marketing purposes and the final 20% is set for the community.
Going back to the 50%, the token can be gained through staking and through a ‘swap’ exchange that is yet to be set up. There is no indication as to when this bit of ARMY coin news will happen, so it makes sense to be careful about this.
Is ARMY coin a scam?
So, what is the deal with ARMY? Well, if we consider that:
- The management agency behind BTS has said that it is nothing to do with the group
- It has a very amateur-looking website
- It has no information regarding the people behind it
- It has no dates for what will happen in the future
- It has no fixed purpose
- It is only available on one exchange
- There are no price forecasts available, even though some very obscure cryptos have forecasts.
It might be sensible to think that, while it may not be a scam, it is not the best set-up of cryptocurrencies and you should think twice, at least, before investing in it. Even if you are, you should do your own research, remember cryptocurrencies can go down as well as up, and never invest more money than you can afford to lose.
Who owns ARMY coin?
It depends on what you mean by ‘owns’. If you mean who own the tokens themselves, then it will be people, presumably including a large proportion of BTS fans, who bought it on the Bitget exchange. If we mean who created it, it’s an anonymous person who claims to be a BTS fan.
Is ARMY coin a scam or legit?
It is hard to say whether it is a scam or not. On the one hand, the lack of information and transparency on the token’s website might support the idea that it is a scam, but you can never be sure. That said, the lack of information, transparency and accountability might suggest, whether or not it’s a scam, that it may not be the best investment in the cryptoverse.