Yuga Labs, a blockchain startup behind the Bored Ape Yacht Club NFT collection, has long been in the middle of the controversy due to its founders' anonymity.
While the collection volume reached 383,500 ETH (over $1 billion) on OpenSea, there's still so much that's not known about its founders who not only made about $2 million from the initial sale but also charge a 2.5% royalty on future trades.
Read also: BAYC NFTs creator says pay wasn't "ideal"
Apparently, BuzzFeed News seemed to be closer to solving the riddle than anyone else. The journalists claim they found who are the men behind the Bored Apes' collection: Greg Solano, a 32-year-old writer and editor, and Wylie Aronow, a 35-year-old originally from Florida who go by the pseudonyms "Gordon Goner" and "Gargamel."
According to the report, Yuga Labs CEO Nicole Muniz confirmed their identities. Solano and Aronow were reportedly both interested in crypto and came up with the idea of rich apes. They later hired a freelance illustrator to draw the apes and two engineers — "Emperor Tomato Ketchup" and "No Sass" — to launch smart contracts for the collection.
Prior to BAYC, Greg Solano was an editor and book critic. Aronow's occupation before the well-known collection came to life remains unclear.
One way or the other, the Web3 community seems to be confused as people are split in their views on privacy-related issues in the pseudo-anonymous crypto world.
For instance, a Web3 believer who goes on Twitter by @drewcoffman doubted BuzzFeed's arguments that anonymous projects could be dangerous. Meanwhile, others noted that BAYC smart contract's code architecture "hypothetically" allows the founders to mint more apes "whenever they want."
The majority of the crypto community, however, doesn't agree with BuzzFeed's decision to reveal the identities without permission as people claim journalists should have given at least "some adequate warning" so Solano and Aronow could prepare their friends, family, and themselves for what some say might be a "life-changing" reveal.