Dismissed by some as a joke, the crypto-currency dogecoin, which is based on an internet meme about the inner thoughts of a Shiba Inus dog, has seen its credibility and value soar in the last 48 hours following a successful campaign to send the underfunded Jamaican bobsled team to the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics.
In the space of just 24 hours the market capitalisation of all the dogecoins in circulation (around 33 billion coins) jumped from less than $25 million (£15.2m, €18.5m) to almost $65 million.
The jump in market value for dogecoin coincided with the crypto-currency's most high profile campaign to date, when it raised more than $30,000 in the space of 48 hours to help send a two-man Jamaican bobsled team to Sochi 2014.
The two-man bobsled team was in need of funds despite qualifying for the Olympics last weekend. The Jamaican Olympics Association has said travel costs will be covered, but the team still needed $80,000 to cover equipment and other costs.
The dogecoin campaign alone raised more than its goal of $30,000, and the funds have now been transferred to the official Crowdtilt fundraising pot, bringing the total raised to $112,000.
Community and generosity
Dogecoin has been built around a sense of community and generosity, with the crypto-currency becoming the second most-tipped online currency within a week of launching at the beginning of December.
The genesis of the Jamaican bobsled fundraising campaign came from Liam Butler, who runs the Dogecoin Foundation with the currency's founders Jackson Palmer and Billy Markus. Butler told the Guardian:
"As someone who grew up in the 90s, Cool Runnings was the ultimate feel good movie about underdogs out of their element achieving their dreams. When I was about seven years old, my best friend and I had a billy-cart that his dad built. When we would start our run down his driveway, we would shout out the catchphrase from the movie: 'Feel the rhythm, feel the rhyme, get on up, it's bobsled time!'"
Dogecoin vs Bitcoin
While the value of dogecoin is still some way behind that of the granddaddy of crypto-currenices bitcoin, this high profile publicity will certainly help give the movement much-needed creditability as well as increasing the value of dogecoins already mined by the community.
According to the website CoinMarketCap.com dogecoin is only the seventh most valuable crypto-currency based on market capitalisation. Dogecoin's value has slipped back slightly to just below $60m which is some way off bitcoin's market value of $10.5 billion.
Indian skier campaign
The dogecoin community is not yet finished with trying to help get athletes from smaller countries to Sochi 2014, with the latest effort looking to get Indian skier Shiva Keshavan to Russia next month, though the foundation has yet to reply to a thread started on Reddit by the dogecoin community.
According to poster justthisonejoke, Keshavan and two fellow Indian skiers need just £4,500 each in order to travel to Sochi.