CNN World News Actuality By Claire Evren-Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced he plans to study cryptocurrencies and other decentralizing technologies as part of a larger bid to improve the social networking service he co-founded.
“There are important counter-trends to this encryption and cryptocurrency that take power from centralized systems and put it back into people’s hands, but they come with the risk of being harder to control. I’m interested to go deeper and study the positive and negative aspects of these technologies, and how best to use them in our services.”
Mark Zuckerberg isn’t the only Facebook executive expressing interest in the space. David Marcus, the company’s vice president of messaging products, joined the board of Coinbase Inc., one of the largest crypto exchanges, late last year.
“I’ve been involved with, and fascinated by cryptocurrencies since 2012, and I’ve witnessed how Coinbase has started democratizing access to this new asset class,” Marcus said.
Zuckerberg said: “One of the most interesting questions in technology right now is about centralization vs decentralization. “A lot of us got into technology because we believe it can be a decentralizing force that puts more power in people’s hands.”
The Facebook founder went on to lament how this potential seems to have been corrupted by some big tech firms and governments that instead use technology to monitor people. He said he views cryptocurrency and encryption as potential tools for countering this trend, giving people back the power that’s currently held by centralized systems.
Zuckerberg outlined what he called personal challenges for the year ahead, noting that one is to study the “positive and negative aspects” of cryptocurrency and encryption.
Zuckerberg went on to note that his theme for this year is to focus on “fixing important issues” in technology, media and government. “I’m looking forward to bringing groups of experts together to discuss and help work through these topics.
Mark Zuckerberg called cryptocurrencies one of the most interesting questions in technology right now. He added that today, many have lost faith that “technology would be a decentralizing force.”
Through Facebook payments, users can link their Messenger account to a debit card, and pay friends with a quick message, or make an e-commerce purchase via Messenger and Marketplace on Facebook.
Facebook has already signaled at past F8 developer conferences that it will expand its payments business conservatively, to include bill payment and investing options, which those WeChat Pay and Alipay have offered for years.
The cryptocurrency industry is skyrocketing right now, and this has resulted in major financial and tech players to become invested in its growth. One of the major players who might be considering jumping onboard the trend or perhaps creating his own cryptocurrency could be Facebook Founder Mark Zuckerberg.