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Author Topic: 1p2u: a new twist on the micropayments  (Read 3367 times)

zridling

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1p2u: a new twist on the micropayments
« on: September 08, 2009, 11:42:53 AM »
[via Glyn Moody]

micropayments-800wp.jpg

Glyn writes that maybe the reason so many micropayment systems have failed in the past is "a matter of implementation rather than any deep flaw with idea itself." Seems that banks and payment processors like PayPal can kill just about micropayment system before it gets off the ground due to high transaction fees. And since we agree that a place like DonationCoder.com is well worth supporting, I'm curious for your response to 1p2U's idea of creating a revenue mechanism that doesn’t rely upon copyright (or patent):

-- It lets your readers pay you to write your blog!
-- It's a little widget you put on your blog
-- It lets your readers become paying subscribers.
-- Subscribers pay you a penny for each article you write.


Here are some details from the FAQ:
Why would anyone pay me?
Your readers want to encourage you to write!
If you write, they pay. If you don't write, they don't pay.
If you write well they continue subscribing, if poorly, they stop.
Your readers are your new publisher, paying you for your writing.

How does it work?
You register your blog's RSS feed with 1p2U and put the widget on your blog.
1p2U monitors your feed and has a record of your 1p2U subscribers.
1p is due to you from each subscriber each time a new item appears in your feed.
Readers become your 1p2U subscribers by clicking on the 1p2U widget.

Where's my money?
Your subscribers can pay their dues whenever they want - if at all.
As soon as they do pay, you can start withdrawing your earnings.
Your other readers are unaffected and still read your blog without paying you a penny.
You are not charging people to read your words. You are letting people pay you to write them.

What's in it for 1p2U?
1p2U makes money the same way you do.
If you want to encourage the improvement of 1p2U you can subscribe to the 1p2U blog that publishes details of each improvement.
1p2U does not charge commission, does not insert 3rd party advertising, and does not spam or sell e-mail addresses.
1p2U is a project of Digital Productions and uses its Contingency Market web service.

.......................................
Crosbie Fitch is a UK chap who writes a very informed blog on copyright, digital data issues, intellectual monopolies, and other things. Worth checking out.

mouser

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Re: 1p2u: a new twist on the micropayments
« Reply #1 on: September 08, 2009, 11:59:16 AM »
great post and links.

One thing i will strongly disagree with is this:
Quote
..can kill just about micropayment system before it gets off the ground due to high transaction fees.

As i wrote about in my article on experiences after one year at donationcoder.com, i think the focus on payment amounts and fees is completely misplaced.

In short, I believe that the reason that micro-donation and micro-payment systems don't survive is not because of the small amounts or fees -- it's because:
  • People are highly reluctant to go through the considerable effort and distraction of making a payment for something of relatively little value to them
  • People are highly averse to taking the security risk of sending a payment to someone they don't know and fully trust (especially if it's an optional payment)
  • The google-dominated advertisement culture of the web means that most people assume websites are making loads of money from advertising and that they are already doing their financial support part by watching the adverts on the web.
  • There is no culture of optional-support on the web; people seem to view software as either commercial (for which many happily pay), or open-source/freeware which they tend to view as something that no one should ever pay any money for, optional or not.

The first two items can (and i think will) be solved eventually -- by one of the big trusted monopolies like google decides to do a kind of univeral account/payment system that will make it trivial in terms of effort and security to send small amounts money to websites.

The last two items are going to be a matter of slowly changing the culture to think about a model of directly rewarding authors and artists for their creations, even when such payments are optional and of user-chosen amounts.

-mouser
« Last Edit: September 08, 2009, 12:02:27 PM by mouser »

zridling

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Re: 1p2u: a new twist on the micropayments
« Reply #2 on: September 08, 2009, 12:09:15 PM »
I'm glad you revisited those points. That kind of re-education will be needed in the face of current obstacles, among them fear of entering a credit card number online along with the multiple clicks that people suffer through. Compare that to how easy it is to share a payment here with another DC member.

Makes a big difference.

app103

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Re: 1p2u: a new twist on the micropayments
« Reply #3 on: September 19, 2009, 10:24:11 AM »
Do you have any idea how many subscribers you would have to have and how much writing you would have to do to earn a living?

If all 208 of my RSS subscribers were to sign up for this to pay me a penny per post (highly unlikely), and I posted every day (also highly unlikely), I'd make about $759/year

I think only a small percentage (if any) would actually sign up for this, therefore, I'd need 1000's of readers and would have to write all day to scratch out a living that would still be below the poverty level in most parts of the US.

Just to cover the cost of the rent on my apartment (which is pretty cheap for where I live), I'd need 3140 regular readers willing to sign up for this AND I'd have to post every day.

But with my current readership, the small percentage of readers that might sign up for this would likely be 1 (or less), translating to $3.65 a year, at most (with a post a day), but with the way I post, more like $0.50/year.