The evidence of Facebook's hubris, arrogance and simple untrustworthiness mounts weekly, if not daily, and the case that the social media giant should be dismantled becomes ever clearer in the process.
Those who doubt those assertions need only contemplate Facebook's ambitions to launch its own digital currency, the Libra.
It is to be hoped that next month's House and Senate hearings on Mark Zuckerberg's monetary ambitions will undermine the Libra before it gets started. Currency is, and should be, the realm of sovereign governments, not of a corporation that answers only to the whim of one man.
To be fair, Libra — at least as outlined so far by Facebook — is supposed to be controlled not by the one corporation but by a consortium of corporations. Facebook named 29 partners in this endeavor and has a target of 100 members of the "Libra Association" by 2020. It also claims that the data generated by use of the Libra will be shielded from Facebook's advertising and social media arms.
No matter. Development and operation of the currency are clearly intended to be Facebook's baby. Many of the listed partners in the association, such as MasterCard and Visa, have signed non-binding agreements and are, according to a New York Times story on Libra, skeptical of Zuckerberg's vision. They are there, to be blunt, in order not to be left out and behind.
Facebook's track record on privacy is rivaled only by its opaqueness and lack of accountability. In Zuckerberg's world, privacy is only a vague concept — indeed, it works against the very notion of social media — and exists only to be violated to enhance the company's revenue stream. It would be naive to think Libra would be any different.
Chris Hughes, Facebook co-founder-turned-critic, summed up the risk well last week: "Libra would hand over much of the control of monetary policy from central banks to these private companies ..." he wrote Friday. "Inevitably, these companies will put their private interests — profits and influence — ahead of public ones."
Facebook's longtime mantra has been "Move fast and break things." That's a dangerous approach to take with the global currency system.