- Problem: Twitter wants to retain market share and must keep users engaged.
- Solution: Twitter’s Tip Jar feature will accept bitcoin via the Lightning Network app Strike. This could act as a loyalty magnet, potentially encourage better behavior, and help bitcoin move closer to domination.
- Timeline: Tip Jar began rolling out in May. The Bitcoin feature is reportedly being trialed and is coming soon according to Kayvon Beykpour, Product Lead at Twitter.
Twitter to encourage tipping with BTC
We are two-thirds of the way through 2021 and it’s proving to be an innovative year for Twitter.
According to rumors online, the latest Twitter beta version shows Bitcoin payments are being tested through its Tip Jar feature.
Mobile developer Alessandro Paluzzi leaked an image of how the service will look:
The Twitter share price is up slightly in pre-market trading while Bitcoin has once again breached $50k and is up 5% at the time of writing.
Twitter is investing in its users
In recent months Twitter has released newsletters, live audio in Twitter Spaces, Super Follows, and Tip Jars.
Each of these encourages individuals to produce creative content and become influencers in their own right. Furthermore, the tip jar phenomenon entices platform loyalty if the creator can monetize their offerings.
The group Twitter initially envisioned benefiting from Tip Jar includes creators, journalists, experts, and non-profits.
It seems the tip jar is a natural progression in keeping up with the rising ranks of influencers and their quest to make instant money online.
Platform rivals YouTube, Instagram, Clubhouse, and Facebook each already has their own versions of tip jars enabling users to express gratitude to creators.
Now that Twitter is allegedly bringing BTC tips to the fore, it could bring Tip Jar adoption to a whole other level…or could it?
In theory, it should make influencers loyal to Twitter. Better still it could encourage them to behave appropriately to ensure they maintain an appreciative following.
Alternatively, it could fail.
Bitcoin maximalists are hodlers by nature. So, parting with their bitcoin to tip a Twitter persona that has previously been dropping knowledge bombs for free, won’t come naturally.
Twitter’s Tip Jar service was first announced in May (after rumors began circulating at the end of April) and gradually rolled out to select participants.
To be tipped, the user can integrate their Twitter account with a choice of services:
- Cash App
The trouble with some of these third-party services such as PayPal is that they could inadvertently reveal your real name and address to the tipper. With many Twitter users operating anonymously this could pose a problem.
Twitter plans to integrate Bitcoin payments via The Lightning Network. This is faster and cheaper than Bitcoin’s primary network. Users will need to connect their Stripe wallet with Twitter to collect or send Bitcoin tips.
While not everyone yet has access to Tip Jar, those that do can find it on their main Twitter profile page on both the iOS and Android apps. On Android, tips can also be sent within Spaces.
Surprisingly, Twitter takes no cut from the Tip Jar feature.
From day one of Tip Jar’s launch people were crying out for a crypto option, so it makes sense for one to come. Particularly as Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey is a Bitcoin bull and the CEO of Cash App’s parent company Square.
During its Q2 earnings call Dorsey said bitcoin is a big part of Twitter’s future:
Dorsey also said:
“If the Internet has a native currency, a global currency, we are able to move so much faster with products such as Super Follows, Commerce, Subscription, Tip Jar, and we can reach every single person on the planet because of that instead of going down on market-by-market approach.”
Safety Mode and Super Follows
In other news, Twitter is also testing a new feature called Safety Mode. This automatically blocks hateful messages, filtering “mentions” for seven days to prevent the user from seeing messages flagged as likely to contain hate speech or insults.
With the United States under increasing pressure to protect citizens from online abuse, Twitter is attempting to help.
Meanwhile, Twitter’s Super Follows feature allows influencers to offer content behind a paywall, for a fee, which could range from $3 to $10 per month.