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Discussion

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Not without the typo of repeating step 3 🤪

But yeah, we're live with web monetization, this was the PR:

Implement web-monetization/payment pointer #6345

What type of PR is this? (check all applicable)

  • [ ] Refactor
  • [x] Feature
  • [ ] Bug Fix
  • [ ] Optimization
  • [ ] Documentation Update

Description

This is the first step in implementing web monetization.

Web monetization is a protocol which allows websites to accept micro-payments to any page with the payment pointer meta tag. It's not yet standard, but through Grant for the Web, there will be lots of experimentation with this and we're getting involved ourselves.

For anyone that does not have a payment-enabled browser (or browser extension for now), this is just a meta tag that doesn't do anything at all. For anyone that does have payments activated, they'll start streaming tiny amounts of payment into our wallet.

This is the first step just to experiment for the site, but if it's all technically straightforward, we'll soon be adding the ability for authors to plop their payment pointers onto their content to get paid directly with no intervention from us.

This is all lightweight experimentation from us. As you can see from the size of this PR, it's not a huge technical commitment on our part, but if the ecosystem takes off, it will be fun to see what we might do. We'll definitely be following projects like this.

For other live communities looking to implement payment pointer wallets, it's pretty complicated to get going at the moment, so we'd advise to not bother as of yet because earnings will be fairly minuscule early on. The process will be much more straightforward if/when the ecosystem matures and you won't miss out on much while we experiment. Get in touch with us if you're curious about how you might leverage this on your platform in the future.

We're not expecting this to be revolutionary to our end users or our business overnight, but we're excited to play a part in pushing forward some really good ideas.

 

You must have meant:

<!-- Step 4: Profit! -->
 

I think this will reward a more pragmatic approach to content, where some people may get rewards from their posts providing more concrete value, rather than simply getting attention.

There are a lot of really good ideas out there for content monetization, many of which may reform the trash fire that is the majority of the content of the web.

 

So this isn't going to be like Mediums pay walled articles, right? From the PR description, it looks like it would be optional.

 

Damn, that's too bad. My luck, find something great just before things go sideways. 😭

No paywalls, this is just going to be a way to tip authors as you read for folks who have Coil or monetization enabled.

Paywalls are antithetical to how the dev ecosystem works. There could be a different feature on the site which would only work with web monetization but haven’t thought that far out.

Thanks for that. A pit opened in my gut when I thought of that! No slight to the authors on Medium (so many good articles ... it's how I found Dev!), but every time I get redirected to Medium, I immediately back out and forget the article ever existed.

Good to know we're not following that! Joy!

Are you thinking of something like Brave?

You are not that far off though Kelvin. It seems at the moment that monetization on posts where the author hasn’t set up their payment pointer (which isn't possible now, and might not be of interest to all authors, or even possible for them), would go to DEV.TO by default.

This is one of the reason why authors left Medium; the platform was making money out of their content in egregious ways. Then again, nobody ever forced authors to publish on Medium or DEV.TO. I believe this is not going to look good if this is the default, as opposed to be opt-in. Maybe it's the case already? It needs to be a choice authors make; this would also show that they are fully aware monetization is going on, as opposed to assuming they are aware and are OK with it...

I think you'll find that we'll be thoughtful and transparent about anything we do. We've written about some of this in the past.

There is no perfect static terms of service agreement or user experience expectation. As an open source project, every change into this project will be available for scrutiny and discussion.

And as we roll out monetization while simultaneously expanding our generalized open source initiative, different communities built on the platform (thismmalife.com/ etc.) will also be able to implement the monetization system.

Of course, none of this matters if there is not adoption of the technology, so we'll most certainly be working with Coil, GFTW, and everyone involved in whatever ways we can be most helpful.

Hello all, and 100% of post + 20% bonus when Coil is activated?

Agreed. It would be great to have an easy procedure for the authors that are interested though. I'm personally not sure about Coil, for instance, just like crypto wallets. Lots out there, but the real basic info seems buried unless your "in the know" to some degree. Not necessarily purposefully, but as we all know to some degree, there's a lot of assumed knowledge. I mentioned the wallets as a case in point because I'm learning Blockchain development, so at least for testing, I will shortly need one. Rabbit holes full of starry eyes, but not enough concrete info to make such an important decision on. Very frustrating and unencouraging. I keep prodding from stubborn tenacity, but damn!

 

What % is going to Dev.to now, and in the possible future?

 

100% goes to the author on their posts, dev.to collects on common areas like the home page and posts where the author hasn’t set up their payment pointer.

Right now it’s just site-wide which isn’t even that much money right now with such a low percentage of monetizers. We will be seeking to boost the ecosystem, of course.

When will it be possible to set up the payment pointers?

posts where the author hasn’t set up their payment pointer.

😳 And this isn't opt-in? The default will be that for people who are not aware of this, are not interested in it, or possibly don't have the means to set it up in their country, DEV.TO will be making money from their content automatically? The vast majority of all money would go to DEV.TO in this no-opt-in scenario, wouldn't it?

I agree. Those that neglect to set up a payment pointer are losing out on an opportunity. A more fair implementation would be for the platform to accrue the funds into an account that the author could claim once they set up their payment pointer.
There could be some type of notification when users log in to say "Hey, if you set up a payment pointer you will get $X dollars". It would be a great marketing/promo opportunity for monetization providers (i.e. coil).
It is a lot more involved than the simple method of defaulting to the platform so I can understand why DEV has not done it. The amounts are too small at this point to worry about it.

Downside of that is, that if the author left the platform forever, the money I've donated is wasted/frozen forever. If there is a notification informing me, that a donation towards this article goes to dev.to because to author did not set up funding, it is fine for me. This website also has costs incurring simply by hosting.

 
 

Now we just need a 🤑 reaction.

🤑

 

I really do want to broaden the reactions

 

I don't suppose this surprised you? 🤭🤣

 

I was wondering when that shoe would drop.