Social Media Tipping

In my opinion, one of the most interesting potential uses for digital currency is for tipping people over the internet. Rather than just clicking a like button or up-voting a post, people are now able to send very small 'micro-payments' to the creator of a particularly useful or entertaining piece of content, to a friend as an acknowledgement for help or a kind comment, or as a reward for small acts of usefulness or kindness.

The reason why we have never been able to do this before is because traditional payment methods impose transaction fees which make accepting regular payments of a few pennies or less uneconomical. Another reason is because it is simply a hassle to log in to your online banking or Paypal account just to send a tiny payment - it doesn't seem worth bothering. Digital currencies not only have very low transaction fees, they are also much easier to use for tipping; because a digital currency is essentially composed of numbers within a software program, it can be integrated directly into the websites and apps that we use use.

This is already being done on many of the most popular social media sites, from Reddit to Facebook to Twitter, through the use of 'tip bots'. These tip bots make it easy for anybody to send or receive small tips in their chosen digital currency simply by writing a post on the site. For example, using the FedoraCoin Twitter tip bot is as simple as tweeting '@tipfedora tip @DeanScottWalsh 1000'; you can also get an address for making deposits from an external wallet, or withdraw your balance to a different wallet, just as easily by sending a single tweet. Many different coins, especially those which have an emphasis on tipping like DogeCoin and FedoraCoin (TiPS), have tip bots for the three social media sites listed above, and probably for other sites too.

These tip bots are opening up a whole new world of interaction on social media sites. Did your friend post an inspiring Facebook status update? Send them a tip! Saw a tweet that genuinely made you laugh – send the person who posted it a tip! These tips can be for tiny amounts – often less than a single cent – meaning that it is easy to be free and generous without breaking the bank. For people receiving the tips, it is often the feeling that somebody places real value on what they have posted that provides the largest reward, rather than the money itself, but if someone often posts really great content then those small tips can add up to a useful amount of money.

There is no limit to the number of different ways that social media tipping can be used. I have already mentioned a couple above, but some others may be:

  • Acknowledging a friend's efforts in organizing something, like night out or other social event.
  • Rewarding people for following your or sharing a post you really want to get out there.
  • A super easy way for businesses to run give-aways through social media.
  • Helping artists, writers and media producers you like to make a living from their work by acknowledging your appreciation with a very small gift.
  • A quick and easy way to donate to charity via your social media account.
  • Selling services directly on social media – get an expert consultation through your favourite social media site by sending payment with a tipbot, for example.

Not only is this a good way to add value to our online social interactions (pun intended!), its also a great way to introduce people to the idea of digital currency. Many people still don't trust digital currencies like Bitcoin and perhaps don't really understand the need for them. Social media tipping is a genuine advantage which people can easily understand, allows people to interact with the whole idea of digital money using a platform they are familiar with, and gives many people the chance to try out a coin with money that has been given to them without having to put their hard earned wages on the line.

Categories: E-Currency | Cryptocurrency

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