Our fearless chief, Nilay Patel, despatched me an article about Chipotle accepting cryptocurrency for cost earlier this yr. I did take into consideration writing one thing to troll my cryptocurrency-hating editor who loves Chipotle, however then Elon Musk did some method of nonsense, and I forgot.

Till now. Chipotle made the error of tipping us to its new recreation for Nationwide Avocado Day. It’s referred to as “Purchase the Dip” as a result of guac prices additional. The sport will, based on its press launch, “interact followers in a inventory market simulation to ‘purchase the dip’ at its lowest level and provides away a complete of $200,000 in crypto.” Chipotle did pay $25 million for giving its prospects norovirus, so I assume that is how they’re recruiting new ones.

“Purchase the dip” is a typical phrase within the crypto world, although, and it refers to the concept that crypto’s value motion is cyclical. Sometimes, on this ideology, cryptocurrency values undergo a “winter” or downturn, and when you purchase crypto then, will probably be low-cost relative to the highest of the following cycle. Your mileage could range concerning this explicit funding narrative.

Typically, it’s very tough to time the market backside. Encouraging individuals to strive it, even within the type of a recreation, is irresponsible at greatest.

This isn’t Chipotle’s first crypto stunt. That will be its celebration of Nationwide Burrito Day — very like Nationwide Avocado Day, this vacation is the invention of some extraordinarily annoying entrepreneurs — by giving freely $100,000 in Bitcoin (in addition to $100,000 in free burritos). Chipotle then launched its personal foreign money on Roblox referred to as Burrito Bucks. For those who performed the Chipotle Burrito Builder recreation on Roblox, you might get a code totally free meals at sure Chipotle eating places by buying and selling in your Burrito Bucks.

After which, after all, there are the Flexa funds, the factor Nilay emailed me about. To make them, you employ a Flexa-enabled app, akin to SPEDN (not a typo however a play on “hodl,” itself a drunken typo). So I downloaded the app, and uh, you understand what was wild?

A screenshot of an app, where a pop-up warns the user “Do not add more ETH than you are willing to spend. The SPEDN app does not support withdrawals. In order to use any ETH you deposit, you must spend it.” Below that is a button that says “I understand,”

haha what
Screenshot of SPEDN app

The pitch for cryptocurrency was that it was alleged to be an enchancment on the present banking system. I don’t perceive how loading a pockets I can’t withdraw from as a way to make a transaction is an enchancment over a bank card. It’s considerably worse than money. And in contrast to both money or credit score, each time you purchase one thing along with your Flexa account, it’s IRS o’clock. Flexa will make it easier to, minimally, along with your taxes by supplying you with a CSV of your transactions so that you can provide the IRS the additional cash you owe since you purchased a burrito bowl with cryptocurrency.

If I had been to deposit right into a Flexa account, the place would my crypto go? Properly, based on the phrases of service, “If you deposit your cryptocurrency into the App, your funds are held and insured with a licensed third celebration custodian.” Nice! Cool! No additional questions! For those who rummage across the website just a little, you discover that the deposits are insured by Gemini, the cryptocurrency trade run by the twins Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss.

Fortuitously, Monique Soriano — an outdoor spokeswoman for Chipotle — tells me that winners from Purchase the Dip will obtain their crypto by a Coinbase account. Soriano declined to say what number of transactions per day at Chipotle came about by Flexa, citing the corporate’s upcoming second quarter earnings launch. Nonetheless, I feel suspect that crypto is extra useful to Chipotle as a advertising and marketing stunt than it’s as a income stream — in any case, the purpose of Flexa is that Chipotle can select to receives a commission in {dollars}, it doesn’t matter what crypto you employ.





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