From bust to boom: how 50 Cent became an accidental bitcoin millionaire

The rapper let fans pay for a 2014 album in the cryptocurrency. Now, its value has soared – and the once bankrupt musician has made almost $8m

Name: 50 Cent.

Age: 42.

Appearance: The walking personification of the boom and bust economy.

This is the rapper who got famous from rhyming “party” with “Bacardi”, right? Correct. He also had a song about being a pimp, but that is not why we are talking about him.

No? Then why are we talking about him? Because he is a millionaire.

This isn’t news. All rappers are millionaires. All they ever do is tell us that they are millionaires. This is true, especially 50 Cent. Why, just last month he Instagrammed himself standing next to a helicopter while wearing a jewel-encrusted leather jacket and holding a child wrapped in a fur coat.

So what’s the big deal? You see, 50 Cent isn’t just any millionaire. He is a bitcoin millionaire.

I don’t know what that means. In 2014, 50 Cent released an album called Animal Ambition, and he allowed fans to purchase it using cryptocurrency.

I have never heard of this album. Don’t worry, nor has anyone. The rapper made only 700 bitcoin from the scheme.

That isn’t a lot. Well, it wasn’t. But he apparently forgot to do anything with those 700 bitcoin, and now they have a value of almost $8m (£5.6m).

That’s stupid. I don’t even know how money works any more. What makes it stranger is that 50 Cent filed for bankruptcy in 2015.

Wait, he was broke? Well, at the time, he did Instagram himself sitting next to the word “BROKE” spelled out in piles of $100 bills, so who am I to argue?

But now he is rich again? This is apparently how 50 Cent operates. Before his bankruptcy, he reportedly made $100m when Vitamin Water – one of his early investments – was sold to Coca-Cola. But then he lost all his money. And now he is rich again, all because he forgot about a cryptocurrency that is in the grip of an unsustainable paroxysm of hyperinflation.

What are we supposed to learn from this? Oh, that nothing matters. You can work as hard as you like, but you will never achieve the success a rapper had by literally forgetting to cash in some made-up money. Nothing has any point any more. We should all just give up.

Do say: “50 Cent? More like 700 Bitcoin!”

Don’t say: “At the current rate, 700 bitcoin is actually worth around 769,872,576 cents.”

The GuardianTramp

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