A Fellow at MIT claims that Facebook’s Libra currency is based on his ideas.
Did Libra Take Its Structure from Another Coin?
The Royal Society’s Open Science publication released a whitepaper in 2018. It was written by several members of MIT, one of which was Fellow Alex Lipton. In the paper, Lipton describes an “asset-backed, supra-national digital token.” This correlates with the goals and ideals of Libra, which will allegedly be backed by several forms of fiat and “short-term debt.”
The cryptocurrency discussed in the whitepaper, known as Trade Coin, is also designed for streamlining cross-border and domestic payments, and providing financial means for underbanked populations.
Lipton says these ideas were taken directly from his paper, explaining:
Without being particularly obnoxious, I can tell you that the actual structure of Libra is pretty much lifted verbatim from the paper which Sandy Pentland and Thomas Hardjono and I published last year… The Libra people cannot really say that they have not read that, or if they have not read that, they probably shouldn’t be doing what they are doing in the first place.
Libra has been hit with mountains of controversy since it first arrived. Members of the American Congress, for example, have commented that there are too many unanswered questions as of late regarding the project’s main goals, and that Facebook is not to be trusted with people’s financial information following the Cambridge Analytica scandal.
They have ultimately asked David Marcus – the head of Facebook’s blockchain division – and his team to hold off on developing Libra further until they can be assured that the cryptocurrency is safe. Marcus has said he will comply with the request.
This is also not the first time Libra has been accused of ripping off another person’s work. The cryptocurrency project is alleged to have taken its logo from Current, a banking firm in northern California that says the company ultimately stole its logo by using the same San Francisco-based design firm. Current’s logo involves a blue, purple and pink-tinted circle surrounding three wavy, purple lines. Libra has virtually the same logo with different coloring.
This Is Becoming a Pattern…
And, of course, there’s the original case involving Facebook itself, which was purportedly conceived originally by the Winklevoss Twins, the founders of New York’s Gemini Exchange. Both Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss allege they originally came up with the concept for Facebook back when they were students at Harvard.
Fellow classmate Mark Zuckerberg – who later became the head executive for Facebook – was simply hired to perform coding duties for the platform, as detailed in the Oscar-winning film “The Social Network.” However, Zuckerberg ultimately brought the platform to existence through his own vision and efforts, leaving the Winklevoss Twins out of its development. This emerged in a massive lawsuit that the Twins and Zuckerberg settled out of court.