Facebook is moving into the financial world. Mark Zuckerberg's world-conquering social network has a new global digital currency slated to arrive in 2020. With it comes Calibra, an app that acts as a digital wallet. Will Facebook's 2.38 billion monthly active users jump on board this venture? Many people remain uneasy.
Facebook calls the Libra coin a cryptocurrency, but unlike Bitcoin and its volatile imitators, these Zuck bucks are backed by a reserve of real-world currency to protect against price fluctuations. In theory, it should be as stable as the almighty dollar.
Libra is meant to be used for online transactions, via the Calibra app, run by a subsidiary company of Facebook rather than directly by the social network. It's supposed to enable online banking in countries where it's not easy available and provide an easy world standard for these transactions. But if our latest poll is anything to go by, people aren't buying it.
It's not even a contest. The overwhelming majority wouldn't use Libra, and cite distrust of Facebook as the main reason. And with good reason, too. Facebook has had a disastrous history when it comes to user privacy and security. The Cambridge Analytica scandal is still on many people's minds, but Facebook has quietly shared user data with third parties many times.
Even if you don't have problems with Facebook as a social network, the behemoth, all-encompassing megacorp that it is growing into is cause for concern. Even lawmakers typically slow to react to tech developments are scrutinizing the big companies, Facebook included, for antitrust violations. If Facebook gets so much control over messaging, virtual reality, advertising, news, AI, robots and dating and then also financial transactions, isn't the company becoming way too powerful?
Not to mention the potential of Facebook's influence in politics being made much more powerful controlling a worldwide financial system. In our original poll article, commentators made it clear how they saw Libra—a new data harvesting system in Facebook's arsenal.