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My Thoughts on Facebook’s New Cryptocurrency: Libra

My Thoughts on Facebook’s New Cryptocurrency: Libra Nils Smith

I think Facebook just created the Facebook of Cryptocurrency. Yes, that would make Bitcoin the Myspace of the crypto world.

Let me explain.

If you haven’t heard, Facebook announced that they will be joining with 100 different partners including companies like Mastercard, Uber and PayPal. I think the best summary from Libra’s whitepaper that explains the currency is in these 3 core points:

  1. It is built on a secure, scalable, and reliable blockchain;

  2. It is backed by a reserve of assets designed to give it intrinsic value;

  3. It is governed by the independent Libra Association tasked with evolving the ecosystem.

Let me quickly explain each point:
1. Libra is built on the same powerful technology that Bitcoin was built on: blockchain. While many have challenged the merits of cryptocurrency, few question the power, security and scale of blockchain technology.

2. The Libra Association will hold a collective of fiat currencies as reserve that will give the “stable coin” (Libra cryptocurrency) base value and stability that differentiates the Libra from most other cryptocurrencies.

3. Facebook will not independently govern the cryptocurrency (nor will any established government system). Libra will be governed by the collective members of the Libra association that will consist of 100 different organizations meaning Facebook will only control 1% of the cryptocurrency.

Here are my initial thoughts:

  1. Libra will work. It will take time, but this will expedite the adoption of cryptocurrency to the masses in a very significant way. The significant development will likely make it easier for companies and organizations to have an effective system for accepting crypto as a form of payment.

  2. Libra will be good for the crypto world as a whole. There are thousands of cryptocurrencies out there and most will die and most should die. Some will thrive and I believe this will lead to great adoption of cryptocurrency as a whole and many of the currencies like Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin and others will ride the back of Libra to much greater global adoption.

  3. Libra will bring greater utility to developers. Currently building on blockchain technologies is challenging for developers. Facebook already has a strong history of supporting developers so I expect that many great utilities will be built on top of Libra’s blockchain infrastructure.

  4. Libra will significantly enhance global transactions. Facebook, along with many other technologies, has condensed our world and Libra will continue to do this making global transactions much easier and more efficient. I have personally been involved in global transactions for years making hundreds of payments through PayPal and Western Union and in the process paid thousands of dollars in fees. Libra will create incredible efficiency in these exchanges and enhance the opportunities around global exchange.

Here are 3 more reasons I think Libra is going to succeed:

  1. Facebook brings the best in technology innovation. Part of Facebook’s success through the years is that they never settled in and they have constantly innovated. Libra will need the same level of constant innovation to succeed. Pair that with the partners they are bringing in with Coinbase, Uber and others there will not be a lack of innovation around this cryptocurrency.

  2. Facebook is not doing this alone. While many claim they don’t trust Facebook with their data, their actions don’t back that up as more people are even more engaged on Facebook and Instagram than ever. They’ve made mistakes and they’re owning them. Even if you don’t fully trust Facebook, they are only 1% stakeholders here. The accountability and support of the other 99% is massive and the trust that comes with the diversity of partnership here is key.

  3. Facebook has learned from 10 years of Crypto History. Bitcoin has been revolutionary in many ways, but there have been bumps in the road. Facebook has been able to watch the journey, learn from the technology and create the best infrastructure for long term success.

So, back to Libra being the Facebook of Cryptocurrency.

Myspace was awesome! We had our Top 8. We could have our favorite music playing on our page. We could design our background and it was truly our own customized space.

Then Facebook came along.

It was, seemingly, Myspace - but boring. It was very plain. No music. No custom backgrounds. But it worked really well. And it got better, all the time. And it hasn’t stopped getting better. And it hasn’t stopped growing.

Bitcoin has set an incredible foundation for cryptocurrency. While Tom was friends with all of us, none of us really know who Satoshi Nakomoto really is. Bitcoin will likely continue to grow on the back of Libra, but I think there are some core flaws (like not even knowing who created it) connected to Bitcoin that will allow Libra to fly by and be the cryptocurrency for the masses. Myspace.com still exists and Tom is doing just fine. It’s just not Facebook. Facebook is the social network that now has almost 3 billion active users. It wouldn’t be what it is without the foundation that Myspace established and I think Bitcoin will serve the same function for Libra.

Time will tell! The exciting part is that it won’t be too much time as Libra is set to launch in 2020!

To learn more about Libra you can go to https://libra.org.

I would also love for you to consider reading Crypto for Good: Demystifying Cryptocurrencies for the Nonprofit Leader. This is a book I co-wrote with my friend, Nick Runyon.

5 Facebook Live Tips for Your Ministry

Recently I shared 5 Ideas for your ministry to use Facebook Live. This list could have been 100 points long and I think the best thing you can do is just start using it as much as possible and see what engages most and do more of that. As you begin getting more comfortable with Facebook Live here are 5 tips to help you engage more effectively:

  1. Title Creatively
  2. Don’t Overthink It
  3. Prioritize Audio
  4. Keep It Short
  5. Boost the Post

5 Ministries to Watch On Facebook

I love to see churches and ministries that have made Facebook a priority in both their communication and ministry strategy.  The below ministries are doing an excellent job of both creating great content as well as engaging people in a very social way through their Facebook Page.  I hope you will take a few minutes to click around and see how they are maximizing this powerful ministry platform:

  1. Jesus Daily  - Dr. Aaron Tabor has built one of the largest and most engaging Facebook pages on the planet.  While the content might seem strange to many North American Christians, Jesus Daily has a content strategy that connects believers across the globe.  

  2. Hillsong Church - Hillsong is a collective of churches around the world and they have prioritized this global social network to connect believers together in one place creating great content and igniting unique conversations.

  3. TD Jakes Ministries - this ministry has a massive following from TV broadcasting and is using their Facebook page to connect with their audience in a very social way through highly engaging content and clear calls to action.

  4. International House of Prayer - this local church has had a massive impact though the years through live streaming and other online initiatives.  They continue this impact through their intentionality on their Facebook Page.  

  5. Joel Osteen Ministries - like TD Jakes Ministires, Joel Osteen Ministries is effectively using Facebook to create personal interactions with the millions that have been engaging with the ministry through the television broadcasts.  

 

I would also love for you to check out some of our Facebook Pages from Community Bible Church:

Community Bible Church (Global)

Community Bible Church Online Church

Community Bible Church Gold Canyon

Community Bible Church Borgfeld 

 

Here are the Facebook Pages for several of my ministry clients as well:

Nick Vujicic

Life Without Limbs

Emotionally Healthy Spirituality

Awesome Marriage

Tammie Head

The Leaven

Rockbridge Seminary

Key Ministry

How to Get Your Facebook Page Verified

Most people think that you need to to have more than 20,000 followers for you to get your page verified on Facebook, but that’s just not true! I’ve seen several Pages and heard stories of people telling how they got their page verified with only 700 to 1000 Page Likes. It’s not about how many page likes you have, it’s all about how authentic your page is. What’s even more surprising is that you don’t have to spend tons of money for ads for this, a small budget is enough.

Here are some things that may help you become qualified to get your Facebook page verified:

  1. Put a lot of info in your profile. Get your page info completely filled out, if possible. Pick an appropriate category for your page: a blogger, business person, public figure, etc. Link your personal Facebook account to this page and make your profile picture from your personal account public by default so that people can view it. In the info section include a long description of who you are and what you do.

  2. Post content regularly. It’s pretty obvious- but you need to post on your page! It doesn’t need to be updated everyday but at least post a few times a week.

  3. Run boosted posts or ads for a week. Advertise your posts by running boosted posts or ads. You don’t have to spend a fortune. You can run ads for as low as $2 a day for a week.

There are two different ways to request your page to be verified. You can request using a phone verification method or by using business documents.

Steps to Verify your Facebook Page via Phone:

  1. Click Settings at the top of your Page

  2. From General, click Page Verification

  3. Click Verify this Page, then click Get Started

  4. Enter a publicly listed phone number for your business, your country and language

  5. Click Call Me Now to allow Facebook to call you with a verification code

  6. Enter the 4-digit verification code and click Continue

Steps to Verify your Facebook Page via Business Documents:

  1. Click Settings at the top of your Page

  2. From General, click Page Verification

  3. Click Verify this Page, then click Get Started

  4. Click Verify with Documents

  5. Upload a picture of an official document showing your business' name and address (bills from your company work great for this)

After Facebook receives your verification code or business document, they will review your info to confirm that it matches public records and will contact you about your verification status within a few days. Keep in mind that you're not required to verify your Page.

It typically takes 3-6 days for Celebrities, Sports, Music and Politics for your page to be verified and 7-45 days for a Business/Organization Category.

I hope this helps you get your Facebook Page verified! If you still have questions, please comment- I’d love to help.

 

Facebook Live is Here

Have you tried Facebook Live yet?  It’s now available to all individuals in the United States and to many Pages.  It seems that they are slowly rolling this feature out to Profiles around the world and to Pages that are verified.  

If you were a Periscope user you likely noticed that traffic has dropped significantly over the past 3 months and much of this is due to the integration of Facebook Live.  I love how Facebook set this up in such an easy to use way through your mobile device.  

To get started streaming live simply go to update your status and click the icon shown below: 

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Create a title and start streaming!  It really is that easy and immediately after you’re done streaming, the video is available for anyone to view anytime.  It’s so easy I won’t get in how to do it, but I will share a few ideas on how you can use it:

  1. Church Services - if your church is not yet streaming this is a great way to start.  Set a smartphone up on a tripod and you are 2 clicks away from Live Streaming your church services!

  2. Bible Studies - this format will work best in a master teacher Bible study format where anyone anywhere can participate by viewing the teaching while also engaging by asking questions through the Comments.

  3. Motivational Messages - this is where I see the greatest opportunity for Pastors that have a 3-5 minute motivational message to share that message anywhere anytime from their phone while also engaging with those who have comments and questions about the topic.

  4. Office Hours - who doesn’t want to ask their Pastor a Question?  Setup a dedicated time for “Office Hours” and turn on Facebook Live and answer questions whatever they might be.  

  5. Special Events - ever wanted to act like a news report live on scene?  Now you can while at Youth Camp, baptisms or other special events that the whole congregation might not be able to be physically present to participate in, but would love to see what’s going on.  

What are some other ideas?  I would love to hear your thoughts or creative ways that you have seen people use this exciting new feature on Facebook.