Attendees at Hong Kong’s ApeFest NFT Tournament Endure ‘Excessive’ Eye-Comparable Issues


Attendees of ApeFest 2023, a meeting for creditors of Bored Ape Yacht Membership NFTs, left the once a year match with eye-related signs starting from ache and burning to blurred imaginative and prescient that can be associated with unsuitable use of ultraviolet lighting fixtures.

This yr’s ApeFest ran from November 3–5 throughout places in Hong Kong. Following an match on Saturday night time, a number of attendees started posting on X (previously Twitter) about issues affecting their eyes. There have been accounts of “excessive ache” and now not having the ability to “see generally,” with some customers having to hunt emergency scientific consideration.  

One consumer, @crypto_birb, who “awoke with serious eye burn,” reported being recognized with photokeratitis, an eye fixed situation brought about by way of publicity to ultraviolet rays, necessarily a sunburn of the cornea. “Please pass get your eyes checked right away,” they wrote. “We’ve in all probability been uncovered to enjoy very similar to Mt Everest climbers—snow blindness.”

Yuga Labs, the corporate at the back of ApeFest and the BAYC NFT assortment, has issued a observation announcing it’s “proactively achieving out to people…to check out and in finding the possible root reasons” of the problem. Most influenced attendees have indicated an development, the corporate mentioned, nevertheless it instructed somebody with signs to get scientific lend a hand. 

The corporate mentioned “lower than one p.c of the ones attending and dealing the development had those signs,” in step with its calculations. Yuga’s spokesperson Emily Kitts mentioned the corporate has been in direct touch with 15 other folks, in a observation to The Verge.

Yuga’s reaction has now not long gone down neatly with ApeFest attendees. On X, they have got accused the corporate of “downplaying” the problem and “mistreatment“; some famous the scientific expenses they’d collected from attending the pageant. 

“My ape is not just the most costly factor I personal, it is among the best issues I personal,” wrote @ahitposter. “I had my folks give me a mortgage so I may attend ApeFest, and now I’m drowning in eye linked scientific expenses I don’t know the way to pay.” 

In a observation to MarketWatch, Yuga Labs declined to invest on the reason for the indications till its investigation is whole. However that’s now not stopped its neighborhood from drawing theories, together with from a 2017 file that visitors at an match hosted by way of Hypebeast in Hong Kong skilled “painful burns and eye accidents.” The an identical signs had been allegedly brought about by way of UV lighting fixtures, which were mistakenly used rather than black lighting fixtures and had been put in by way of a third-party contractor.  

The 1/3 version of ApeFest was once the primary held out of doors New York, representing Yuga Labs’s new guess on Asia, and reportedly drew some 2,500 attendees. They partook in scavenger hunts, nightly events, hangover brunches, and picture walks in a city-wide match that promised “meetups and mayhem.”  


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