You can exchange likes by the thousands on Facebook—with anyone on earth, in any country, instantly—but you can’t get them “out” and exchange them for food. What if you could?
By now you’ve probably heard about Libra, the global digital currency that Facebook recently announced plans to develop. This past summer, the internet went ablaze trying to explain what Libra “really” is. A true cryptocurrency? (Depends on which nerd you ask.) A potential threat to the global financial system? (Jerome H. Powell, chair of the U.S. Federal Reserve, thinks so.) An innocent attempt to bring innovative fintech options to developing nations where banks are ripping people off . . . so can everybody please just chill? (That’s Facebook’s own take, paraphrased from a slightly exasperated-sounding July blog post by David Marcus, the Facebook executive spearheading Libra.)