Facebook’s Libra: Convergence of Cryptocurrency and Social Media?

Remember when television, cable TV, movies, and the Internet were all separate distinct channels?

Then something called “convergence” happened and now, while all the functions listed still exist, they’re all blended together and no longer exist separately or more to the point, can’t exist separately.

Why do I tell you this?

Simple, because when I heard about Facebook’s recent announcement about their own forthcoming cryptocurrency, Libra, all I could think about was convergence.

Let’s talk about this!

The Announcement

On June 18, 2019, Facebook formally announced its long rumored cryptocurrency, Libra.

Considerably more effort and thought went into this than what was behind Satoshi Nakamoto‘s creation of Bitcoin. (Or, for that matter, in Mark Zuckerberg’s dorm room at Harvard when setting up Facebook.)

Here are a few of the principle differences with typical cryptocurrencies that Libra has:

      1. Won’t rely on crypto mining (So shouldn’t be as energy intensive)
      2. Will use a basket of currencies to try and avoid volatility
      3. Seems to have a well-established financial and technical infrastructure

But I don’t want to do a deep dive into the internals of Libra. (There will be enough of that to come later!)

I want to talk about the implications of this announcement. For there will be implications.

The Implications

Libra could be big, not just for Facebook, but for social media, global financial systems, and just about everyone else on the planet.

First, let’s discuss social media:

      1. Ease of transfer of money at probably a lower cost than currently charged
      2. A real reason to be on social media (e.g., Facebook) as it can now be a store of value (And Im not just talking about pictures of your family and cats)
      3. A universal unit of exchange that can be used anywhere theoretically.

Next, what it could mean for global financial systems :

      1. Where there are no banks or populations are poorly served by financial institutions
      2. Countries whose currencies are funny money
      3. Could retail banking be affected as have book stores, music shops, and countless retail chains by this innovation.

Finally, what it could mean for everyone else:

      1. A simpler, cheaper approach to financial transactions possibly
      2. Particularly for those who are off the mainstream financial markets (Only a couple of billion people give or take)
      3. A medium of exchange which could be universally accepted.

A few final thoughts about what Libra could mean.

Libra could be the next big convergence on the planet.

It could be a true disrupter.

Yes, there will be issues.

Folks are already worried about, as they should be, privacy.

What will the tax implications be? (You know the IRS is going to be all over this one)

And there are potential abuses. (Will ransomware aficionados adopt Libra as their new standard?)

Unless Facebook really screws this launch up, the impacts of Libra will be big and seismic.

Possibly as big as the introduction of the Internet itself and we’re still learning what those are and how to deal with them.

Anyone with a social media program today should begin to think about how this could impact them tomorrow.

Because it will!

That’s it for now!

Please check-out my 8 step approach for developing a social media program to get some more ideas on how to use social media.

Also, never forget to reach out to either ask questions or to ask for help from someone like myself!

In the meantime, thank you for following and reading my blog!

I look forward to any and all comments that you may have. I will reply to any comments made to this blog post as promptly as I can.

And, remember!

I do this for a living and if I can be of any assistance to either you or your organization, please feel free to call on me. Our initial discussion will be of no charge to you.

Leave a Reply