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Facebook’s cryptocurrency project faces big new hurdle

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Just hours after Facebook announced its new cryptocurrency project known as Libra, Washington has issued a warning to the tech giant.

In its launch, Facebook published a white paper unveiling more details on Libra and its likely 2020 launch date.

The United States government is requesting the project be suspended until lawmakers have a chance to review it.

American consumer group Consumer Choice Center’s deputy director, Yael Ossowski, believes this move will ultimately harm progression as the technology will not be allowed to evolve.

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“Overseeing regulation on internet and financial firms is important, but the ‘regulate first, innovate later’ mentality that came in response to Libra should give every internet user pause,” Mr Ossowski said.

“If every new internet innovation is now subject to knee-jerk congressional approval, that sets a dangerous precedent for the future of consumer choice online.”

The United States government is arguing that due to the company’s troubles in the past with data breaches, Congress needs the chance to review before taking action.

However, Mr Ossowski believes slowing down production and waiting for lawmakers will slow innovation.

“Allowing political figures to freeze future innovations and projects because of temporary partisan politics will keep millions of consumers from being able to enjoy regular goods and services they enjoy online, not to mention being able to connect with thousands of their friends and family online,” Mr Ossowski said.

“And it won’t stop here. If these threats continue, bitcoin and dozens of other cryptocurrencies, as well as other social media platforms that millions of users have adopted, will also face well-intended but flawed regulation.”

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Facebook’s cryptocurrency project faces big new hurdle
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