Earlier this month, payments giant Paypal announced it would be withdrawing its affiliation with the Facebook Libra project. Since then, the news continues to get worse for Facebook as Mastercard, Visa, Ebay and others just withdrew as well.
The news broke late Friday afternoon ( October 11th ) as Mastercard, Visa, Ebay and others stepped away from the Libra project. If we go back to earlier this month, Paypal announced they were stepping away for regulatory reasons. According to the earlier developments, Paypal had mentioned that
“It doesn’t seem that there was a lot of pre-work done with regulators. [Payments] companies don’t want that [regulatory scrutiny] to bleed into their businesses.”
The statement seemed to be accurate by Paypal, as the Libra project has been nothing short of a regulatory nightmare. Ever since Mark Zuckerberg announced this movement, regulators have been breathing down their shoulders. With the magnitude of what Facebook is trying to do with cryptocurrency, this should have been expected since day one. If Libra does everything it intends to do, it would essentially be cryptocurrency transacted globally, introduced to billions of Facebook users. Despite the massive opportunity that exists in this niche, it’s most likely one of the largest financial developments we have seen in a decade. If Facebook is going to pull something off to this magnitude, regulators will certainly be involved. Many argue that regulators are pressing Facebook too hard on Libra, but if we take their privacy issues into consideration, it seems as if regulators want to insure safety for platform users.
Facebook Libra Organization Doesn’t Seem To Be Phased
Despite all the negative headlines the last couple months, it seems as if the Libra organization continues to move forward. With Facebook growing to epic proportions, regulatory intervention is nothing new for the company. Just a couple weeks ago, Facebook could be seen on LinkedIn featuring a position in the Blockchain space.
Growth Project Manager – Blockchain
Just 3 weeks ago, there was a job posting for “Growth Project Manager, Blockchain” on LinkedIn for Facebook. If we take a look at the details of the role ( which had 34 applicants ) we can see it’s most likely referencing Libra. According to the job posting, some of the text read..
“At Facebook, we have established a new team exploring different ways to leverage blockchain technology to improve the lives of people around the world. It’s a small, fast-growing, and talented group of people and our experienced leadership team comprised of some of the best professionals in their respective fields. The blockchain team is a startup within Facebook and we’re exploring lots of areas of interest across all facets of blockchain technology.”
As mentioned above, it seems like the role was geared towards Libra cryptocurrency. “Improving the lives of people around the world” can be best identified as leveraging a way for people to transact globally through cryptocurrency. It was mentioned a while back how Facebook was targeting the “unbanked” and this seems equally relevant in the text. The “Blockchain team is a startup within Facebook” pretty much explains the Libra infrastructure.
Facebook Will Continue Moving Forward
Many crypto and blockchain professionals doubt the Libra project ever launching at this rate. Most recently, Brad Garlinghouse from Ripple mentioned he doesn’t see the project coming to fruition for the next few years. At the end of the day, if any company is going to push mass adoption, it’s going to be the large players like Facebook or Amazon. With the experience, leadership and capital, these companies have the resources to fight for years if they have to.
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