The recent announcement of Sam Altman‘s departure from OpenAI has triggered a sharp decline in the value of Worldcoin’s WLD token.
At the time of writing, WLD is trading at $1.86, down by more than 13% over the past day, according to data from CoinGecko.
The drop marks a 42% decrease from WLD’s all-time high of $3.30, which was reached when Worldcoin emerged from beta in July.
In the past 24 hours, WLD has seen a trading volume of $141 million, with approximately 40% of it coming from the WLD and Tether (USDT) trading pair on Binance.
Altman, who co-founded Worldcoin along with Max Novendstern and Alex Blania in 2019, was removed from his position as CEO of OpenAI due to his alleged lack of candid communication that affected the responsibilities of the board.
“The board no longer has confidence in his ability to continue leading OpenAI,” the board of directors announced in a blog post Friday.
Interestingly, the broader AI coins and token category does not seem to have been significantly impacted by Altman’s exit.
In the past 24 hours, the AI coin market cap, as defined by CoinGecko, has grown by 30% to reach $5.4 billion.
Worldcoin is a biometric cryptocurrency project developed by Tools for Humanity, based in San Francisco and Berlin.
The project aims to authenticate human identity online through a mechanism called World ID, which helps combat bots and fake identities.
Users join the network by having their iris scanned with an orb-shaped scanner and receive Worldcoin tokens in return, which was inspired by a universal basic income mechanism.
The project’s token, WLD, is based on the Ethereum blockchain.
While it is not available in the U.S., Worldcoin’s iris-scanning orbs have been deployed in several states, including New York, San Francisco, and Atlanta.
Worldcoin Faces Controversy Across the World
Since its inception, Worldcoin has faced criticism and controversy.
Last year, MIT Technology Review published an article claiming that the project acquired its first 500,000 users through “deception, exploited workers, and cash handouts.”
Additionally, governments, including the U.K., Germany, France, and notably Kenya, have raised concerns about privacy, security, and financial implications, with Kenya even suspending Worldcoin’s enrollment.
Back in August, reports surfaced in Nigeria that Nairobi police, in collaboration with officials from various agencies, had conducted a raid on a Worldcoin warehouse in the capital city of Kenya.
At the time, the country said it aimed to thoroughly investigate the legality of Worldcoin’s activities, safeguarding the data collected and its proposed utilization.
Similarly, the Argentine Agency for Access to Public Information (AAIP) has launched a probe into Worldcoin to determine the legality of its data collection practices within the South American nation.
Despite these challenges, Worldcoin officially launched out of beta in July 2023.