On Thursday (August 18), David Marcus, Facebook’s former Head of Messenger and Head of Crypto (more specifically, the Head of the Novi digital wallet), is a big fan of Bitcoin; unfortunately, with his latest praise of Bitcoin, he seems to have upset some supporters of Bitcoin.
Between May 2018 and December 2021, Marcus was working at Meta Platforms, Inc. (previously known as Facebook, Inc.) on the Novi digital wallet project.
According to a report by CoinDesk published on July 1, on this day, Meta announced on the Novi website that “the Novi pilot is ending soon” and that Novi would “no longer be available for use after September 1.” Per the report, “beginning July 21, users will lose the ability to add money to their accounts and “Novi’s WhatsApp account and the Novi app will also become unavailable.”
The CoinDesk report went on to say:
“Novi, originally known as Calibra, had been Meta’s wallet for its libra stablecoin (later renamed diem) revealed in June 2019. Its role shifted as regulatory pressures forced the stablecoin project to change course. Novi became a money-transfer pilot for crypto-based remittances in 2020 – but it never got beyond the U.S. and Guatemala.”
On 30 November 2021, Marcus took to Twitter to announce that he was leaving Meta at the end of 2021:
Then, on May 12, Marcus announced on Twitter that he had created a new company called Lightspark in order to “explore, build and extend the capabilities and utility of Bitcoin”, and that they were going to start by focusing on the Lightning Network.
He went on to add:
“Downturns are good moments to focus on building and creating value with mission-aligned people. We’re excited to dive into Lightning, learn more, and work alongside the community. We’ll share more about our work as we make progress!“
On July 18, Marcus called Bitcoin “the most secure and trusted form of decentralized store-of-value and settlement.”
Well, yesterday, with just four weeks left until Ethereum’s “Merge” protocol upgrade, which is when the Ethereum network is making the transition from proof-of-work (PoW) to proof-of-stake (PoS), Marcus was praising Bitcoin again, but this time in a way that some Ethereum supporters seem to have found offensive. Marcus essentially told his over 103K Twitter followers that Ethereum’s upcoming Merge event makes him glad that Lightspark is building on Bitcoin (which he implies is a more stable and predictable platform). One of those that criticized Marcus’ tweet was Mike Dudas, Founder and General Partner at 6th Man Ventures.
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