Yuga Labs addresses Apefest ‘vision damage’ issue; community calls out poor management

The Bored Ape community was not very impressed by the Yuga Labs’ reaction to the mishap, calling out their lack of basic health management at the event.

Several attendees of Yuga Labs’ ApeFest event on Nov. 4 in Hong Kong reported eye-related issues, including burns, damaged vision and “extreme pain” in their eyes.

Yuga Labs’ official X account has now addressed the issue, claiming they are aware of the reports of potential eye-related issues to many attendees and are investigating the cause behind them.

I just opened up IG and Jasmine’s eye is swollen.

Some Apes had an eye issue at ApeFest.

Protect your eyes. Wash your hands.

Be careful out there. pic.twitter.com/FNHF9hrDeg

— PB Drip (@DripperPb) November 6, 2023

Yuga Labs claimed that less than 1% of the attendees have experienced eye-related symptoms, and most of the affected attendees are experiencing improvement in their conditions with the passage of time.

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

The Hong Kong event grabbed most of the headlines and attention of Crypto Twitter over the weekend. Many users came up with different theories behind the eye related injury with one user pointing toward a similar instance six years ago, where during a promotional event, third-party contractors installed disinfecting ultraviolet lights instead of stage lights, leading to similar eye injuries, burning, blindness, photokeratitis

re: bored apes with eye injuries from apefest

6 years ago in Hong Kong, hypebeast had a party, 3rd party contractors installed disinfecting UV lights, instead of stage lights, & people had similar eye injuries, burning, blindness, photokeratitis

it’s possible this happened pic.twitter.com/ofMUncwya8

— CryptoFinally (@CryptoFinally) November 5, 2023

Others pointed out that the effects of the UV lights could last from a couple of hours to a few days depending on the exposure.

Related: Ryder Ripps ordered to pay Yuga Labs $1.6M in copyright lawsuit

Many on social media platforms were critical of the organizers behind the event, claiming that they should have paid more attention to basic medical hazards with such a setup, and said:

“I can’t imagine paying so much money to be a part of a “club” that overlooks basic medical hazards. I have a Philipps UV Disinfectant lamp in my home, and you’re not even supposed to be in the same room as it when it’s on. It literally says in the instructions to not look at it or be within close proximity as it can also release Ozone, which is toxic/carcinogenic gas.”

Many other attendees blasted Yuga Labs for its mishap, claiming that they had taken out loans to attend the event only to get more “eye-related medical bills I don’t know how to pay.”

I have been a loyal community member for over 2 years.

My ape is not only the most expensive thing I own, it is one of the only things I own.

I had my parents give me a loan so I could attend ApeFest, and now I am drowning in eye related medical bills I don’t know how to pay.

— Arnold Bernault (@ahitposter) November 6, 2023

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