In a recent sit down with Harvard Law Professor Jonathan Zittrain, Zuckerberg spoke into numerous topics related to the future of technology including information fiduciaries, encryption, decentralized services, governance, fighting misinformation, different business models, privacy innovation and future research areas.
Given the companies recent push into the blockchain industry, Zuckerberg touched on the potential applications of his growing blockchain team’s focus.
Specifically, a login application would mean that decentralized authentication would replace Facebook Connect, allowing individuals to pick and choose which apps to allow to access their data. This would also mean that the biggest social network would not have the control to cut off access to third-party apps, making data breaches difficult to track and shut down.
You basically take your information, you store it on some decentralized system and you have the choice of whether to log in in different places and you’re not going through an intermediary. There’s a lot of things that I think would be quite attractive about that.
For developers, one of the things that is really troubling about working with our system, or Google’s system for that matter, or having to deliver services through Apple’s App Store is that you don’t want to have an intermediary between serving the people who are using your service and you. Where someone can just say hey, we as a developer have to follow your policy and if we don’t, then you can cut off access to the people we are serving. That’s kind of a difficult and troubling position to be in.
While it doesn’t seem likely that Facebook will adopt the blockchain for this application, it is an interesting idea floated by Zuckerberg that gives some insight behind the curtain of the social media giant.
This news comes several weeks after Facebook quietly made its first acquisition in the blockchain space, hiring the team behind Chainspace, a small blockchain startup founded by researchers from University College London.
Facebook is also reportedly developing a cryptocurrency designed specifically for money transfers on its WhatsApp encrypted mobile-messaging app. The new cryptocurrency will be a stablecoin pegged to the U.S. dollar, in order to reduce volatility. The first focus will be the remittance market in India, according to people familiar with the matter.