Mark Zuckerberg sees the potential in cryptocurrency, and what the technology behind it represents. The Facebook founder announced on Thursday that he plans to study cryptocurrencies and other decentralized technologies to fix and improve Facebook.
In a post written on Thursday, Zuckerberg said that he’s made an effort to learn something new every year. In 2018, his personal challenge is solving problems with Facebook, and he says a major part of the issue is tackling the question of centralization versus 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 first four words of Facebook's mission have always been "give people the power".) Back in the 1990s and 2000s, most people believed technology would be a decentralizing force,” he said.
“But today, many people have lost faith in that promise,” added the CEO. “With the rise of a small number of big tech companies — and governments using technology to watch their citizens — many people now believe technology only centralizes power rather than decentralizes it.”
Every year I take on a personal challenge to learn something new. I've visited every US state, run 365 miles, built an...
While Facebook sits on the social media throne, and is arguably one of the most powerful forces for social change, Zuckerberg realizes that cryptography and blockchain technology represents a disrupting force to the centralizing authorities of big media and big tech.
“There are important counter-trends to this --like encryption and cryptocurrency -- that take power from centralized systems and put it back into people's hands,” said Zuckerberg. “But they come with the risk of being harder to control.”
In other words, cryptocurrencies and the technology that drives them have the potential to disrupt the status quo—and he wants to make sure his own business doesn’t get swept beneath the waves like MySpace, Friendster, and so many other obsolete platforms. With the rise of alternative social networking sites like Steemit and Gab, the last thing Zuck wants is to be the next MySpace Tom. Who could blame him?
“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,” Zuckerberg concluded.
After all, the Winklevoss twins became the first Bitcoin billionaires last year. Zuckerberg’s not one to be left in the dust by his former nemeses. Should we expect to see Facebook implement some form of cryptocurrency this year? FaceCoin?
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