Facebook’s widely anticipated dive into the crypto space is no longer mere speculation. Over the past few months, multiple independent sources have corroborated the social media giant’s plans for building a payments system powered by its own cryptocurrency. (Blokt has covered the story on numerous occasions including here, here, and here.)
And now, shedding more light into Facebook’s roadmap for this secret initiative codenamed “Project Libra,” the Wall Street Journal reported earlier in the week that the company has been working on the project for more than a year now. To expedite the process, the company is believed to be recruiting potential allies including dozens of financial firms and online merchants.
Facebook Coin Bags Key Players As Strategic Partner
According to the WSJ report, the social media giant is already in talks with Visa and MasterCard, the two heavyweights that control a big chunk of the global payments industry. On top of that, Facebook reportedly is also in talks with First Data, a payment processing platform.
The company is also believed to be in talks with several e-commerce firms and apps, which, if goes to plan, will see these potential partners agreeing to accept the Facebook Coin in their stores and possibly even funding the project.
For those out of the loop, Facebook intends to stabilize the value of its homegrown cryptocurrency by pegging it to dollar reserves. This will give it immunity from the extreme volatility that other cryptos like Bitcoin or Ethereum are usually subject to.
Attempt To Address Privacy Concerns?
Given how Facebook is currently fighting an uphill PR battle after getting caught with its pants down over multiple privacy scandals, it makes sense to view the introduction of a stablecoin, at least in part, an attempt at damage control and to boost user confidence. (Cryptocurrencies offer a higher degree of anonymity and security, which may have prompted Facebook to turn to the asset class as the company explores new avenues of revenue.)
According to WSJ, the company is also planning to roll out a virtual checkout option that will enable users to shop at third-party sites. (The process will be akin to how people can access third-party websites using their Facebook credentials.)
Additionally, Facebook might also incentivize users with Facebook Coin to watch advertisements, shop on its platform, or engage with certain types of content.
Mark Zuckerberg Thinks Blockchain Has A Bigger Role To Play In FB
Facebook has gone on record saying that the company is keen on leveraging the rich potential of blockchain technology to improve various feats of its social network.
Zuckerberg said at the time:
“I’m thinking about going back to decentralized or Blockchain authentication. Although I haven’t figured out a way to make this work out, but this is around authentication and basically granting access to your information and to different services.”
He further stated that the use of blockchain could help users exert better control while sharing data with third-party apps.