Given the endless scandals, abuses, and pecadillos of the mainstream banking industry, it comes as no surprise to see a variety of innovations out there. But some are getting truly creative, such as Fidor Bank, a German start-up which will act as a repository of both euros and World of Warcraft gold.
First, the sign-on to Fidor Bank is through Facebook Connect which, at this time, is one of the only banks that allows that. Second, the bank doesn’t just aggregate accounts but, on a single page, a customer can view all their account holdings from savings and investments through to precious metals and even virtual currencies, such as World of Warcraft Gold.
But wait, there’s more! The bank calculates its payable interest rates based on the number of…wha?…the number Facebook likes it receives?
Well, I would have thought this was eccentric, but that’s at least more rational than the way they calculate LIBOR – so why not!
“The Fidor Bank is the first bank in the world where you can help shape the interest of FidorPay. The rule is simple: The more Facebook Likes, the higher the interest rate. The minimum interest rate of your FidorPay account is 0.5% pa. By the 25th of each month, if the bank achieves a certain number of Likes, then a higher interest is paid and calculated, starting in the month at the rate achieved in each case. From 22,000 Likes FidorPay will offer 1.5% interest per annum for the remainder of the year. At the end of 2012, the interest rate resets again to 0.5% pa.”
Given the past several years of breakdown in the rule of law, and virtual theft from taxpayers via bank bailouts, it is completely understandable that people are creating new ways to organize social systems built on trust to coordinate currencies. While the notion of Mark Zuckerberg being privy to our financial transactions along with a list of all our friends and family is pretty creepy, the fact is, Facebook does have one of the most widely accepted infrastructures for a virtual world, and it makes sense that people will build on it.
Every year the “powers that be” allow there to be a lack of rule of law in money matters, the more inventive solutions we should expect.