Facebook’s foray into cryptocurrency is perhaps one of the most discussed topics among the community. Looking closely, it’s apparent that the response has been somewhat mixed.
Changpeng Zhao Seemingly Positive on Libra
The CEO of the world’s leading and definitely most proactive cryptocurrency exchange, Binance, sees quite a lot of good in Facebook’s venture into the field.
The executive is pretty vocal about his stance, saying that countries should be encouraging their major tech corporations to issue their own tokens as a means of increasing national influence.
Zhao, however, touched on a rather sensitive set of subjects: anonymity, KYC, and AML procedures. This was perhaps provoked by the fact that, according to Libra’s official website, users who wish to download the Calibra app will have to submit a government-issued ID document, a fact which has caused substantial turmoil among cryptocurrency enthusiasts. Yet Zhao reminded his followers that Facebook already has a multitude of information on its users.
Facebook Libra coin don’t need KYC. They have so much more data on the 2 billion people. Not just name, id, address, phone number. They know your family, friends, real-time/historic location, what you like… They know you more than yourself. And now your wallet too. Best AML!
— CZ Binance (@cz_binance) June 18, 2019
Moreover, Binance did a thorough review of the long-awaited cryptocurrency, outlining the potential impact it could have in both the short and long term. According to the report, Facebook could use Libra to establish itself as a provider of open-source technology, while also sparking additional volume in the wider market.
Looking from a long-term perspective, Binance noted that Libra could reshape the payments industry, provide new financial services offerings, as well as advance greater freedom of money throughout the world.
Others Are More Hesitant
Popular industry commentator Ari Paul said that Libra might not even see the daylight. According to him, there’s a 50/50 chance of the cryptocurrency going forward, as there are dozens of regulatory and legislative authorities which will explore how to block it.
The CEO of popular cryptocurrency exchange ShapeShift also weighed in. According to Erik Voorhees, Facebook’s launching its own cryptocurrency is a massive milestone for the industry when one looks at the bigger picture.
“Thoughts on Libra (and my first tweetstorm!): first, zoom out for a second and realize how far this industry has come. The biggest companies in the world are now launching cryptocurrencies. BOOM,” he tweeted.
Voorhees also outlined many positives, but didn’t forget to state the obvious – that Libra is “clearly not a pure cryptocurrency,” and that nobody “should expect privacy by using it.” He said that there are regulatory burdens which will prevent its acceptance throughout the world. We have already seen European governmental backlash against it, with a German member of the European Parliament stating that multinational companies such as Facebook shouldn’t be allowed to operate in a “regulatory nirvana when introducing virtual currencies.”
The Community Doesn’t Trust Libra Over Banks
In what seems like the ultimate statement of the community, the overwhelming majority of users have clearly stated that they won’t even trust Libra over traditional banks.
Would you trust Facebook’s coin (Libra) more than payment and financial services provided by banks? Vote and retweet to get a good sample size. Comment if you have an opinion on the matter or tag someone who does.
— Gabor Gurbacs (@gaborgurbacs) June 14, 2019
As seen in the above poll posted by Gabor Gurbacs of VanEck, 79% of people are skeptical of Libra’s trustworthiness compared to traditional banks. Given that over 3,600 people voted, the results can’t simply be overlooked.