By CCN.com: Bitcoin educator and promotor Andreas M. Antonopoulos published a new video today in which he pointed out that Facebook’s Libra project doesn’t amount to a “real” blockchain.
The professional speaker has spoken at length in the past about the oppressive nature of KYC and “blacklisting” bitcoins.
Fungibility is an issue at the heart of cryptocurrency – if some coins are good, but others are “bad,” then the system might not be sustainable long-term. Efforts have been deployed to “dust” the entire Bitcoin blockchain so that every wallet would necessarily hold “bad” coinage. The goal is to make it such that the whole network must be accepted, or none of it can be.
Nevertheless, governments have banned specific Bitcoin addresses from use. Which raises the question: what does a world of crypto and government look like? How much friendly interaction can the two have?
For his part, Antonopoulos believes that the Facebook project is another beast entirely. Answering a question submitted to him, he elucidates his position on Facebook’s Libra.
First joking that he sold all his Bitcoin to get into Facebook’s crypto, the speaker then talks about his understanding of the project and why it doesn’t concern him as a “threat” to Bitcoin.
“What Facebook, or any company like Facebook, is proposing is not a cryptocurrency. It doesn’t have any of the fundamental characteristics of cryptocurrency. It doesn’t stand on the five pillars of an open blockchain. In fact, it has none of those.”
He then explains the pillars of an open blockchain. A blockchain must be open, public, neutral, censorship-resistant, and borderless. The famed Bitcoin evangelist says that Facebook’s project fails all of these tests, on numerous accounts. As such, it’s not a blockchain – nor something for real blockchains to worry about. He explains that centralized companies like Facebook cannot create something that matches up to Bitcoin in every way, for legal reasons among others.
“Centralized institutions […] cannot achieve these five pillars. And the reason they cannot achieve them is because of the law.”
The other side of it: there’s less benefit in creating a decentralized cryptocurrency. You would have to compete with others to earn your way there. By centralizing the blockchain, you’re able to control what happens within it. Reportedly, Facebook won’t have full control of Libra’s blockchain, but that doesn’t mean it won’t have other significant influence. In essence, to say that Libra doesn’t belong to Facebook is just nonsense. Of course, it does.
And, according to experts like Andreas Antonopoulos, that’s precisely why whatever Facebook is building can’t be considered a cryptocurrency. In effect, it’s a new digital means for people to transfer money. If the word “cryptocurrency” gets tossed around enough, it certainly means that more people will become interested in the broader scope of the industry.
Either way, though, Facebook doesn’t displace Bitcoin any more than company-backed token project ever could.
Last modified: July 2, 2020 7:23 PM UTC