Facebook Claims To Be Politically Neutral But Won’t Say Whether People It Banned Can Use Libra

Kevin Mwanza
Written by Kevin Mwanza
Farrakhan
Minister Louis Farrakhan, leader of the Nation of Islam, is one of the people who has been banned from Facebook for violating the company’s policies. (AP Photo/Vahid Salemi)

Facebook still does not know if it will allow banned users to transact using its digital currency, Libra, when it eventually launches.

David Marcus is CEO of Facebook’s newly created Calibra subsidiary, which focuses on financial services to provide access to the new cryptocurrency. Marcus said at a House Financial Services Committee hearing that the California-based tech giant had not “written a policy yet” and he did not know if banned individuals including Minister Louis Farrakhan and
former Breitbart editor Milo Yiannopoulos would be allowed to use it.

During the hearing entitled “Examining Facebook’s Proposed Cryptocurrency and Its Impact on Consumers, Investors, and the American Financial System,” Rep. Sean Duffy (R-WI) held up a $20 bill and asked Marcus, “Who can use this? Who can use Libra?”

Listen to GHOGH with Jamarlin Martin | Episode 49: Jamilah Lemieux
Part 1: Jamarlin talks to digital media executive, activist and author Jamilah Lemieux. They discuss her article, “The Power And Fragility Of Working In Black Media” in the Columbia Journalism Review and Lamont Hill being fired by CNN for his comments on Palestine. They also discuss whether Michelle Obama’s words on Rev. Jeremiah Wright in her book “Becoming” were a false equivalence.

Marcus responded by referring to “thoughtful” and “appropriate” regulations for the cryptocurrency.

“So anyone that can open a Calibra account, go through KYC (Know Your Customer) in countries where we can operate,” he answered.

This technically means that Facebook could still prevent users from opening a Calibra account and essentially dictate who is allowed to use Libra, according to Reclaim The Net.

“The thoughtful answer would be, ‘As long as you abide by the law, you can use Libra,’ but that isn’t the answer you’ve given me, which gives me great pause,” Duffy responded.

Facebook wants to be seen as a neutral platform despite its vested interest that has alienated a number of its users and advertisers.