Mark Zuckerberg says Facebook to look into cryptocurrency

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NEW YORK (Jan 5): Facebook Inc. Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg gave cryptocurrency enthusiasts a little optimism for the new year.

Zuckerberg referenced cryptocurrencies in a posting Thursday in which he laid out how he will spend 2018 trying to correct persistent problems -— including the proliferation of hate speech and misinformation -— that have dogged his wildly popular social network for the past two years.

“There are important counter-trends to this -- encryption and cryptocurrency -- that take power from centralized systems and put it back into people’s hands,” Zuckerberg wrote. “But they come with the risk of being harder to control. I’m interested to go deeper and study the positive and negative aspects of these technologies, and how best to use them in our services.”

Zuckerberg isn’t the only Facebook executive expressing interest in the space. David Marcus, the company’s vice president of messaging products, joined the board of Coinbase Inc., one of the largest crypto exchanges, late last year.

“I’ve been involved with, and fascinated by cryptocurrencies since 2012, and I’ve witnessed how Coinbase has started democratizing access to this new asset class,” Marcus said on Coinbase’s blog Dec. 12.

What all this may mean for the digital currency world remains to be seen.