Random thought on freedom

Facebook is a social media platform.

Facebook proposed its own crypto-currency, the Libra.

Facebook often locks people out of their accounts, or suspends them indefinitely, for posting things they deem “problematic.”

Would that constitute theft if said locked-out user had any Libra crypto he couldn’t access? Or, as an alternative construction, would using Libra, even a small amount of it, force FB to play fair and not ever lock you out of your FB account (because presumably you need to log in to FB to actually use Libra).

2 thoughts on “Random thought on freedom

  1. It depends on if their cryptocurrency works the way the others do, where “ownership” of the currency means having the private key part of a cryptographic keypair which can be used to assign some portion of currency to another keypair. You can generate any number of keypairs for yourself and transfer currency around to yourself. The transactions are recorded forever, but there’s no easy way to determine who the recipients of a transaction are.

    If FB is doing it that way, then there is no practical way for FB to steal the currency from Evil Bad Hate Users.

    But they may well be hoping to act as an exchange. Dealing directly with cryptocurrencies is a bit much for most people, especially because if you lose the private key that controls distribution of some coin, then you’re hosed. So many people use services that manage the private keys for them… which completely bypasses the security you are supposed to have when using cryptocurrencies.

    1. I guess it depends on the meaning of “theft,” then. If they lock you out, so you cannot access it, even if they cannot either, does that constitute theft? If I steal your $10 and burn it, I can’t use (access) it, but I’ve taken it without authorization from you so that you are unable to spend it, so it still counts as theft, right? Sort of like making a digital copy of music counts as theft, even though the artist still has their copy, because you are depriving them of the value of the sale.

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