Marked interest from Facebook and Twitter in the blockchain space is a boost for cryptocurrency; and, in the case of Twitter CEO Jack Dosey, Bitcoin.Facebook’s sheer size means any foray into the blockchain space could cause reverberations for years to come. The social media giant quietly ‘acqui-hired’ the team behind Chainspace, a small blockchain startup consisting of University College London researchers. Though, to be sure, AirBnB once acquihired the team behind ChangeTip team, a social media tipping service for cryptocurrency, but nothing ever seemed to have publicly come from that.
The social network conglomerate has around two billion users worldwide and seems to keep an open mind to new technologies, such as blockchain. At the end of last year, Facebook stated that it was looking into the development of its own stablecoin – a form of digital currency tied to the U.S. dollar – as a non-volatile way to transfer money on WhatsApp, Bloomberg reports. The social media giant is eyeing an emerging Indian market which saw $69 billion move through the messaging app in 2017.
Chainspace’s white paper outlines that the team were building a “platform for high-integrity and transparent processing of transactions within a decentralized system”. In a few words, its goal was to improve transaction speeds using blockchain. But Facebook will look for more than this, as scalability will be an important problem to solve with such a large network.
Facebook recently hired Evan Cheng as its first “director of engineering, blockchain.
Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey has meanwhile shown a sustained interest in cryptocurrencies. As the CEO of Square, he is responsible for the most downloaded payments app in the world. Square’s Cash.App allows users to buy bitcoin in limited amounts. In fact, a broad overview of the world’s largest cryptocurrency is available for newcomers on its website.
This mirrors what Dorsey is saying on his personal beliefs regarding crypto, added to a notion that Bitcoin can become the native, ubiquitous currency used on the internet.
“It’s a fascinating time in technology because [money] to me was one of the last big centralized and nationalized instruments,” he said, while speaking to Joe Rogan.“When you think about the internet as a country, as a market, it’s going to have its own currency. But the interesting thing about the internet nation is that it’s the whole world. The world gets one currency, one thing to communicate in. I think that’s so freeing and so exciting.”
Continued work on blockchain across the board will be helpful to Bitcoin, in the eyes of Jack Dorsey at least. Speaking on the Stephan Livera podcast, he seemed to say that parts of the technology underpinning other crypto coins could be incorporated into Bitcoin. If Bitcoin proves adaptable, more stable asset and begin to sustain an uptrend in the long-term. For good measure, there are 261 million registered account on Twitter.