Misguided bitcoin evangelists have been heaping praise on Facebook for experimenting with blockchain and for saying it might launch its own digital currency.
They believe that having a massive multinational conglomerate like Facebook test out use cases for blockchain is lending legitimacy to the nascent industry.
However, Zhou — a former Harvard classmate of the Facebook chairman — says Zuckerberg isn’t doing that in order to promote mainstream adoption of crypto or blockchain.
To the contrary, he wants to make the social media monopoly a closed, centralized crypto-ecosystem that he will assert total control over, Zhou says.
Zhou: ‘It’s going to be a closed Facebook ecosystem’
With more than 2 billion alleged users worldwide, Facebook could operate like an unregulated nation-state with its own domestic economy.
“I suspect it’s going to be a closed Facebook ecosystem,” Zhou told Yahoo Finance. “Their goal is to wall off other people from coming into their system. Their goal is not to open up their system to other people.”
“The thesis behind [crypto] tokens in general, the blockchain in general — it’s an open system where anyone can use it if they spend the time to adopt the technology.”
Facebook Has 1 Billion Fake Accounts, Mark Zuckerberg ‘Greatest Con Man in History’: Researcher https://t.co/3mqsNk4Ux7
— CCN.com (@CCNMarkets) January 24, 2019
Zhou: I don’t trust Zuckerberg’s crypto intentions
Zhou attended Harvard with Mark Zuckerberg. In 2004, Zhou was among the first 2,000 students to sign up for the college networking website that later became Facebook.
Zhou says in typical Zuckerberg fashion, he never gave any credit to the early crew of supporters that made Facebook the social media giant it evolved into. That’s why he’s skeptical that Zuckerberg has any positive intentions with respect to the crypto space.
“I’m as much a part of that community, and helped to contribute to that success as the shareholders that put money in it, as the engineers who worked on it. None of those people get representation.”
“That’s why people are leaving [Facebook]. We’re not stakeholders in that business anymore.”
Facebook May Be Slapped with ‘Record-Setting’ FTC Fine for Data Breach Scandal https://t.co/CiPrhZHJ3U
— CCN.com (@CCNMarkets) January 18, 2019
‘Facebook is not a community-driven organization’
Based on his past experiences with Zuckerberg, Wei Zhou says Facebook’s foray into blockchain will not be inclusive (which is ironic for a “social network”).
“The blowback against Facebook is it’s not a community-driven organisation. Key decisions are made by one person.”
While blockchain and cryptocurrencies promote decentralization, Zhou believes Zuckerberg will make Facebook’s crypto ecosystem totally centralized — with him at the center.
“I don’t think it’s in Zuckerberg’s DNA to let go. The mindset is very clear from day one if you’ve read the book, watched the movie, see what he does. Even the way he lives — before he moved into the neighborhood, he bought every house in that neighborhood.”
In contrast, Zhou says Binance’s goal is to help grow the blockchain and cryptocurrency ecosystem to include as many people as possible.
FB shareholders: Mark Zuckerberg is a dictator
Wei Zhou’s observations about Mark Zuckerberg’s megalomaniac tendencies have been echoed by shareholders.
As CCN reported earlier this month, shareholders urged Facebook to force Zuckerberg to step down as chairman of the board, saying he runs the social media monopoly like “a dictatorship.”
They claim that Zuckerberg — who has been chairman since 2012 — wields too much power over the company as its controlling shareholder, chairman, and CEO. Shareholders say this makes the Facebook board unable to exercise proper oversight of Zuckerberg.
Ironically, Facebook unwittingly confirmed that it does indeed “operate essentially as a dictatorship” when it flatly rejected this shareholder motion — along with seven other anti-Zuckerberg shareholder proposals.
Shareholders Want ‘Dictator’ Zuck Out as Chair, Facebook Defends Him https://t.co/n5trlcCRBy
— CCN.com (@CCNMarkets) April 16, 2019
About The Author
Samantha Chang is a financial editor who writes about politics at BizPac Review, about business at CCN, and general news at HVY. She is a law school graduate and an alum of the University of Pennsylvania who enjoys finance, flowers, and fitness. You can find her on Twitter at Samantha_Chang.