Facebook has quietly (bar the odd leak) been working on its own cryptocurrency initiative for some time now. Reports suggest it will be announced tomorrow (Tuesday 17 June), complete with a consortium of partners offering governance for Facebook’s new coin, called The Libra Association.
The Wall Street Journal broke the news that financial firms including Visa, Mastercard, PayPal and Stripe are involved, but crypto-focused news site The Block – which is a credible source – claims to have the full list of companies involved in The Libra Association. One jumps out at us: Spotify.
People are already speculating about the implications for that company. “If true, Spotify is the most interesting one,” tweeted Simon de la Rouviere, who’s also an adviser to blockchain-music startup Ujo. Why? “Because paying multiple artists across the globe, royalties, is what crypto is good for.”
Of course, Spotify’s historical model isn’t paying royalties to artists, it’s paying royalties to their rightsholders – but it’s currently testing direct uploads (and payments) from independent artists. This speculation may well be getting ahead of itself: if you were Spotify, why *wouldn’t* you want to be on the independent board governing a Facebook cryptocurrency, to take a watching brief at least. All eyes on the planned announcement tomorrow.