NFT group Bored Ape Yacht Club held their three-day event, ApeFest, on November 3-5 with an estimated attendance of 2,500 people.
Following the event, more than 20 attendees have reported intense eye pain, vision problems and skin burns, potentially from the UV light used.
Several of them also took to social media, sharing how they sought medical attention due to their condition.
Cryptocurrency analyst Adrian Zdunczyk who was also in attendance shared on X (fka Twitter) how he was diagnosed with “photokeratitis over both eyes, accident related” after a trip to the eye clinic.
[For information purposes only]— Adrian Zduńczyk, CMT (@crypto_birb) November 6, 2023
So far, 30 hours since woke up with severe eye burn, I’ve visited emergency hospital and eye clinic and spent there a total of 6 hours.
Got diagnosed with “photokeratitis over both eyes, accident related” with prescribed steroid eye drops and eye… https://t.co/qZadVqsQFg pic.twitter.com/5EULptCR4H
According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, photokeratitis is a painful eye condition caused by exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays, whether from the sun or artificial sources.
X user @CryptoJune777 also shared that after consulting with a doctor, the eye pain was said to be caused by the UV lighting of the stage, which has a similar effect as sunlight.
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A representative from Yuga Labs, the parent company of Bored Ape Yacht Club, spoke with Hong Kong Free Press on Tuesday, November 7, saying “We are distressed by these reports, as nothing is more important to us than the health and safety of our community, many of whom we spent significant facetime with over the weekend.”
Apes, we are aware of the eye-related issues that affected some of the attendees of ApeFest and have been proactively reaching out to individuals since yesterday to try and find the potential root causes. Based on our estimates, we believe that much less than 1% of those…— Bored Ape Yacht Club (@BoredApeYC) November 6, 2023
Bored Ape Yacht Club issued a statement saying they’re reaching out to individuals in order to try and find the potential root causes.
The post also mentions how the symptoms of the eye-related issues were experienced by “much less than 1%” of those who attended and worked at the event.
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Several Netizens replied to the post, showing discontent towards the organiser’s response.
From the PR team:— Shad (@madladshad) November 6, 2023
- Guys completely downplay it, make it look like a small number, eg... less than 1%
- Make it look like you're actively helping and solving
- Try to 'Find' the 'Potential' root causes, even though we know exactly what it was
lol this tweet doesnt even include a single apology for being a potential cause to event-goers pain?— tmagled (@tmagled) November 6, 2023
Feel like you’re dismissing the people who were hurt because it was only less than 1% of attendees.— Brad Michelson (@BradMichelson) November 6, 2023
2,250 people attended! 😂— ThunderChunky (@SLightening101) November 7, 2023
"guys, it's OK, we only blinded two dozen people!"