Simon Willison’s Weblog


Micropayments on the way

24th October 2002

Craig Saila:

In the “Wouldn’t it Be Great” category: Vin Crosbie, in a posting to online-news, says he’s been hearing rumours that next month MasterCard and Visa will start handling small (micro?) transactions online.

I’ve been saying (offline) for a long time that what the web really needs is a micropayment system backed by a huge (and trustworthy) financial company. This could be just the break the micropayment movement needs. I’m still slightly worried by the implementation details; for micropayments to work there needs to be a single-sign-in mechanism of some kind and anything like that is likely to have all kinds of security and privacy concerns. Then again, the Amazon tip-jar / honor box model has been working pretty well since its introduction. It’ll be interesting to see where this goes.

This is Micropayments on the way by Simon Willison, posted on 24th October 2002.

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