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A couple months ago I installed Flattr (https://flattr.com/) on my blog at the request of a reader. For those unfamiliar with Flattr, it is a micropayments service that allows consumers of web content to make small donations to content producers by clicking on widgets analogous to a retweet button.

That same reader did in fact flattr one of my posts shortly thereafter and I haven't thought about it much since. Given that it is a relatively obscure service I was pretty skeptical that anyone else would use it.

After almost 2 months it turns out that I have been flattred four times amounting to total donations of a little over $2 (after subtracting their 10% processing fee). In monetary terms the amount is insignificant but still I am impressed that it has achieved any traction whatsoever.

Does anyone else out there use Flattr? Had you heard of it previously?
Flattr is a social micropayments system enabling you to easily share money to support things you like and to get support from your fans.
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Greg Linster's profile photoJeff Sayre's profile photoPelle Wessman's profile photo
5 comments
 
I tried Flattr about two years ago when it was still in beta. I uninstalled it about four months later as I did not like the closed ecosystem that required users to pay into their system to be able to give others micro payments.
 
I really like the concept and I tried using something similar called http://tiptheweb.org/ with no luck. However, I've had several people "tip" via my PayPal donation button. One reader was generous enough to give me $25.
 
+Jeff Sayre: The closed ecosystem is very hard to avoid - I would love it if we could open up and allow transactions between different micro-payment systems, but as far as I understand it's not only a technical challenge but actually something that is hard, if not impossible, to do with the laws we have today regarding money laundry etc.

We do try to be as open as we can when it comes to our social side though - exposing as much data as we can through our API:s and also utilizing standards like Activity Streams and OStatus to increase interoperability with other networks so that we ultimately in the future can be a part of the open social networks that eg. StatusNet and Diaspora are building.
 
+Jeff Sayre: Both Open Transact and PaySwarm are interesting and something we would like to support in some way eventually - until then we're trying to take inspiration from them when building new resources for our own API.
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