Popular social media platform Twitter is reported to be working on a tipping feature that could transform its platform into a micropayment processor.
Citing two sources close to the company, The Information reported yesterday that the company is working on a new feature that will allow users to “tip” each other via their tweets. Although a Twitter spokesperson reportedly said that no such feature is under development, some outlets have gone on to report that the company is working on a Bitcoin tipping feature for its users. It remains to see how this new service would be accepted by the community.
If Twitter does enable tipping feature, we should all get together and tip a random person $1. With strings. They'd be rich & never have to work again. Caveat: this person must now run a Twitter poll for every life decision and let the hivemind decide their fate. Our own avatar.
— Adam Singer (@AdamSinger) January 15, 2020
An Interesting Way to Change Twitter
Of course, the major reason why this news has been circulating is that Twitter chief executive Jack Dorsey has been an avid fan of cryptocurrencies for a while now. He’s one of the most vocal pro-Bitcoin members of Silicon Valley’s higher echelons, and he has done his bit to promote the widespread adoption of the asset.
Square, the payment processing company that he started some years back, has made a significant pivot to accommodate crypto as well, thanks to Square Crypto and the Cash App. In the third quarter of last year, the company announced that it was able to make $148 million off Bitcoin sales alone.
Bringing Decentralization to Social Media
Dorsey himself has been working towards changing the landscape of social media platforms. Last month, he announced on Twitter that he would be funding research into BlueSky, a decentralized social media platform that will present a paradigm shift from what we have come to know.
In the tweet, Dorsey explained that he was inspired to build a decentralized social media platform by a proposal from Mike Masnick, the founder of Internet-focused blog Techdirt. He also added that a decentralized blockchain platform could help solve some of the most significant problems that conventional social media has faced- especially when it comes to content moderation.
Tipping is good for impulse-giving, but who pays? Do users get twitter feed ad revenue shares to give back? If this is asking users to pay to tip, it won’t make a big dent.
— BrendanEich (@BrendanEich) January 13, 2020
He explained, “Centralized enforcement of the global policy to address abuse and misleading information is unlikely to scale over the long-term without placing far too much burden on people.”
Thus, the company would be investing to help bring some of these solutions to light with BlueSky. The project will be developed by a group of 5 people, who will be led by the current Twitter Chief Technology Officer Parag Agrawal.