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Launch HN: Buy Me a Coffee (YC W19) – Give your audience a way to thank you
205 points by jijosunny 10 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 179 comments
Hi HN!

We’re Joseph, Aleesha, and Jijo, the founders of Buy Me A Coffee (https://www.buymeacoffee.com). We make it super easy to accept contributions and recurring memberships from your audience.

A bit of backstory - Joseph and I grew up in India. When I was 12, I started making a little bit of money from my blog, and it had a huge impact on my life. I got to buy books and gadgets, pay for web hosting, none of which I could’ve afforded otherwise. We built our first product in 2010. It was an ad network for bloggers called AdIndigo. There were a bunch of Adsense alternatives doing well at that time, and it grew to serve 6 million impressions at its peak. We later had to shut it down because of the expenses. Buy Me A Coffee is our third (and only successful) attempt at building for the creators.

When we started working on Buy Me A Coffee as a side project, it was a quick way to spin up a page or a button to accept one-time contributions. For artists, OSS developers, and YouTubers, it was an unobtrusive way to monetize their work. They appreciated the simplicity and friendly branding and started requesting more features. Some even noticed that they’re getting more contributions compared to a Patreon or PayPal button. It’s probably because of the no-signup-required payment flow. Supporters also get to leave a note after the payment, and it ends up becoming this ‘wall of love’ for creators.

Today, you can do a lot more with Buy Me A Coffee. You can accept recurring payments and give rewards in return. For e.g. Maria Shriver is using Buy Me A Coffee to monetize her newsletter ‘The Sunday Paper’ (https://thesundaypaper.buymeacoffee.com/) with a link in the footer of every edition. Slowly (https://slowly.buymeacoffee.com/) is a self-funded team using Buy Me A Coffee to accept contributions and feedback from their users. We also built Widgets that allow you to accept payments right from your website. Built-in email features let you share updates and rewards with your audience. We’re also working on a community feature to create a group chat with your supporters. Creators are already doing this with Discord and Slack, and we're excited to build something more focused.

We believe anyone, anywhere in the world who creates something that people find useful or entertaining, should have the option to get paid for their work.

We’re excited to hear all your questions and thoughts about Buy Me A Coffee :) Thank you!






Reading https://www.buymeacoffee.com/terms

These potentially seem like some fairly onerous restrictions, and would potentially exclude nearly all of my favorite youtube channels.

What is your definition of "creators who involve with:" - does this only cover content posted on your site, or any content the creator makes across any publicly available service? To what extent can creators discuss these topics if they don't actively manufacture/promote/distribute them?

Could you be more specific about creators that are "involved in weapons" - is this anything that can be used as a weapon or specific to military/semi-military applications? Would Joerg Sprave's slingshot channel be prohibited? What about someone who makes videos about forging/sharpening knives? Are creators who discuss war journalistically or historically disqualified? Non-miltary RC drone hobbyists like Tom Stanton?

"Chemicals" seems pretty vague. Does this preclude all chemistry and biochem related content? I'm a big fan of channels like NileRed, CodysLab and ThoughtEmporium, would they be prohibited? Would videos which discuss water treatment or concrete chemistry or metallurgy be disqualifying?

"seeds or plants" - are creators who discuss gardening or farming disqualified? Cooking vegetables? Primitive Technology-style makers which discuss creating objects from plant materials?

How do you define "adult" content? Does this include creators working on LGBTQIA activism? Does this include creators who create instructional content while showing non-nipple cleavage? Does this include creators involved in sex-ed/harm reduction campaigns?

Also, are there any geographic restrictions? Can creators outside the US use your service (in countries which are NOT on the US OFAC sanction list)?


> Do not attempt to decompile or modify engineer any software included on Buy Me A Coffee site.

This is also a bit dated policy. I've reported bugs on Patreon before that involved looking at the source code and modifing it, but it did not cross my mind that they'd reserve the right to ban users for doing so. I think this is a case of copying TOS sections from other places which are not a good fit for this service.

That said, Patreon has destroyed their user interface in the past year, profiles on desktop barely contain any information above the fold, so we need competition in this space.


We do have a bug bounty and encourage bug reports from our users (https://twitter.com/PJijin/status/1186904518341955584). The policy mentioned above is to avoid any damages to the creator(s) on the platform. Thanks for the feedback!

I also want to push back on this.

You have a policy that guarantees every single security researcher that inspects your platform will be in violation of your TOS. But you're telling us on an Internet forum that you won't use that policy unless someone does something completely awful. That's asking us to put a lot of trust into you -- trust that you're not willing to reciprocate back to us.

People shouldn't need to break your TOS to report a bug to you, and they shouldn't need to rely on purely your goodwill to protect themselves. Security disclosure is already a really scary process, researchers need explicit guarantees that they won't be prosecuted or sued. If a company tells me that I should just trust them that they won't sue me or ruin my life over a bug report, I stop going through their official disclosure channels, because it's no longer worth the risk. Policies like this are a really good way to get security bugs reported as anonymous Pastebins in the press instead of to your official channels.

I would also note that outside of security research, this bans people from building tools around your site -- browser extensions that automate common tasks or alternate clients that call into unsupported or private APIs. I think that's a really regressive restriction for something as fundamental as a payment platform to have.

Again, maybe your actual policy will be not to go after people who build useful tools -- but in that case, why start out with a TOS that encourages an unhealthy power dynamic, that means you could shut down someone who interops with your service for any reason?

The point of a TOS is to create clarity -- it's an agreement so that both users and platform owners know what's expected of each other. I don't expect a TOS to enumerate literally everything that might happen, but I instinctively recoil away from a TOS that includes onerous restrictions that I'm told to just ignore. A rule that everyone is expected to break is really just a blanket license to selectively punish anyone on your platform for any reason. Why should I as a user trust you with that kind of power?

In regards to protecting creators and avoiding creator damages -- hacking is already a federal crime. What's something that this policy protects you against that couldn't be handled by the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act?


Instead of "you are not permitted to reverse-engineer", maybe "you are not permitted to interact with the server except through the user interface produced by a web browser in accordance with the HTML-based instructions sent to your machine by our web server unless given explicit permission by us"; that effectively prevents people from using that reverse-engineered knowledge to attack your site, whilst still permitting bug reports.

> Can creators outside the US use your service (in countries which are on the US OFAC sanction list)?

It looks like both payment processor integrations (PayPal and Stripe) are US based, so I think it's safe to assume there will be restrictions on sanctioned countries.


Oops, dropped the NOT when rephrasing for clarity, thanks - fixed.

>Also, are there any geographic restrictions? Can creators outside the US use your service (in countries which are NOT on the US OFAC sanction list)?

Yes, Buy Me A Coffee is available to creators in almost all countries. Here is a breakdown of all accepted countries: https://help.buymeacoffee.com/en/articles/3314992-countries-...

>How do you define "adult" content? Does this include creators working on LGBTQIA activism? Does this include creators who create instructional content while showing non-nipple cleavage? Does this include creators involved in sex-ed/harm reduction campaigns?

None of these are against the terms AFAIK. We unpublish creators who promote explicit pornography or nudity. Broadly speaking, we abide by the content restrictions of the vendors and payment processors we work with. More on that can be found here: https://stripe.com/restricted-businesses


> None of these are against the terms AFAIK

How can this be AFAIK? Aren't you one of the founders? If you don't know what your site allows, who does?

At the end of the day, someone has to make the final decision over whether to ban an LGBTQ+ activist. Who is the person who will make that decision on BMaC?

I get that you're beholden to your vendors, and to a certain extent there's nothing you can do about that. But I also assume you're not planning to just forward literally every content decision you have to make to Stripe's legal team for their input. So if a vulnerable person starts using your service, they need a better guarantee than "dunno, we'll have to flip a coin and see." You're still one of the people who are going to be enforcing this, you're still one of the people who have the power to decide how this will work.


To be clear, there are no circumstances under which we'll unpublish an LGBTQ creator. Here's a fantastic writer that I've been following for years who recently joined Buy Me A Coffee - https://www.buymeacoffee.com/pSzjB85

Our community manager deals with account reviews, and she is more knowledgeable to answer the initial question. I shouldn't have said 'AFAIK' either way, my apologies.


> there are no circumstances under which we'll unpublish an LGBTQ creator.

Does that grant them immunity from rules violations, then? I think you said the wrong thing here; what did you intend to say?


IMO the intent is to say that they wouldn't unpublish anyone just because they create content around LGBTQ. However, if they violate any other rules, then they will go through the same consequences as a not-LGBTQ content creater would go through.

You're right. Thank you.

Thanks for the response.

I'd strongly recommend trying to clarify "chemicals" and "plants and seeds" as those are incredibly broad categories that encompass many use cases that stripe does not find objectionable as per the restricted-businesses list you linked. "Pharmacologically active, explosive or poisonous chemicals, plants, or seeds" may be suitably restrictive for your needs.

The "weapons" restriction would also be great to get some clarity on: a large proportion of makers do projects related to cutting tools, replica weapons for cosplay, etc. I think showing how they make blades/saws (that can be used as weapons, but often intended as tools or decoration) or replicas or sporting equipment are not necessarily something that Stripe would find objectionable.

I suspect that stripe does not restrict content related to the discussion of these items, but rather the use of these funds towards the purchase of these items. "build journals" may be permissible, but perhaps more of a grey area. I think their chief concern is the sale of these items. Ex. showing how you built an archery bow and tested it on a sport target seems quite distinct from selling the bow itself. Explaining and demonstrating the chemistry of exothermic reactions is very different than selling firecrackers.

Some clarity would make me more interested in using your service, but I currently am not inclined to sign up as a contributor or recommend your platform as it seems you could somewhat-arbitrarily decide to exclude ~90% of my favorite creators without warning after they have cultivated contributors on your platform.

Lack of clarity can be really disruptive for creators: as getting kicked off of a platform and disrupting an income stream they've come to rely on can be very disheartening - and I've seen this happen to a half-dozen creators on various platforms. Vague terms can lead to many makers to exist in a grey area with the threat of removal at any time, which I think is somewhat harmful.


Noted. We're working on a Community Guidelines page, and I'll make it a point to address these concerns. Thanks for taking the time to share this!

If I provide a service that uses Buy Me a Coffee but outside of that I make a personal donation to cannabis legalization, you reserve the right to restrict my usage of Buy Me a Coffee? In that case I would be a creator that supports cannabis. The phrasing suggests that these terms are dependent upon the creator and not the specifically associated content.

What is wrong with plants?

Natural drugs, maybe? Seems bizarre.

When I click the signup link, I get a message that by signing up, I agree to your terms. But I don't see a link to those terms in the message, and I can't find a link to those terms anywhere else on the main page. I also can't find your privacy policy.

A couple of questions on that front:

- Do your terms include mandatory arbitration agreements for creators?

- Do your terms include mandatory arbitration agreements for tippers?

- Your signup link mentions that you ban adult content. Do you have a clear definition somewhere of what adult content is, or is this following the "know it when we see it" model of platforms like Patreon and Steam?

On the privacy policy front:

- What personal information do you require on signup (for creators and tippers). Can I tip someone without providing them my address/phone number? Can I create an account without providing you my address/phone number?

On the general feature front:

- The site mentions that I can create webhooks, but doesn't mention whether there's a general API for things like adding posts, updating pledges, etc...

This is my biggest personal problems with Patreon -- their interface isn't particularly great, and I can't automate any of the stuff I need to regularly do, so as a result I mostly ignore it or try to handle all of my reward tiers outside of the platform. But on a wider, less personal level, it's also a way to make it harder to migrate between funding platforms and to increase lock-in.


> Your signup link mentions that you ban adult content. Do you have a clear definition somewhere of what adult content is, or is this following the "know it when we see it" model of platforms like Patreon and Steam?

It's a little dismaying that so few -- quite possibly zero -- mainstream creator-payment platforms like this are comfortable with adult content. Patreon seems to still be trying to thread that needle, but there's a near-annual ritual of "OMG Patreon is cracking down the porn" panic. Ko-Fi explicitly (ahem) changed their policy to disallow NSFW content and BMaC here seems to be starting with SFW-only in place.

And, yes, I know the fingers are always pointed at the payment processors here, but that just shifts the question as to why payment processors do this. We're not talking about 1-900 numbers or adult video stores in the divey-ist parts of downtown that are going to face chargeback after chargeback as a cost of doing business; is there truly a good business case for Stripe and PayPal policing somebody's patronage of risqué catgirl comics or what have you?


Once I got a link to the actual terms, I noticed this also includes violent content, which is a little surprising to me.

I try to regularly draw attention to the fact that payment processors are systemically disenfranchising people who produce adult content, and that payment platforms are implicitly cooperating and encouraging that disenfranchisement by silently going along with the processors without even speaking up or openly questioning the standards. But I'm not super-surprised when I see those bans, because pretty much every platform has them.

On the other hand, a ban on violent content is something I haven't seen a lot of, and that makes me question who this service is even designed for. Does that mean anyone producing a comic or writing a book would need to make sure it's the violence equivalent of PG or below? Why would any creative use a platform with that kind of restriction?

Again, there's no hard line describing what that means. You just have to make sure that anything you produce is relatively tame.

It's very, very weird to live in a world where culturally people almost universally celebrate the artistic value and entertainment value of shows like Game of Thrones and Breaking Bad, while simultaneously building platforms where that kind of content just can't exist. It's an almost absurd cultural disconnect that only seems to exist to lock any non-establishment creators out of building meaningful stories that stretch boundaries or challenge viewers.


I haven't specifically investigated the question of payment processing and adult businesses. I have done some research into this issue wrt marijuana businesses and bank accounts. Marijuana is legal in some US states but still not legal at the federal level (last I checked). They have enormous difficulty getting bank accounts.

With marijuana businesses, the issue is that the bank could potentially lose access to the federal system for knowingly issuing a bank account to a business that is violating federal law. This would basically shut the bank down, from what I gather.

My assumption is there is likely a similar mechanism in place poisoning the entire payment system for adult content. If I wanted to work on the issue, I would dig until I found the root cause, which is very likely legal/regulatory and very likely at the federal level in the US. Then put resources into addressing the actual root cause instead of fussing at the payment processors.


While I haven't dug really deeply, I don't think the situations are directly comparable. Adult businesses aren't banned at the federal level, and as long as there's no state law that bans them, there's nothing that legally prevents them from opening a bank account, processing credit cards, and so on.

The problem appears to be specifically with the policies of payment processors. As I understand it, the actual payment processing networks -- MasterCard, Visa, et. al. -- historically charged a significant premium to process transactions for businesses that had a reputation for very high chargeback rates (people calling to cancel payment). Adult businesses had that reputation. From what I've been able to tell, this has persisted to today. It's presumably just easier for payment processors like Stripe and PayPal to ban adult content than to work out multiple rates with their credit card networks, let alone try to make the (correct and I would argue obvious) case that Patreon, Buy Me a Coffee, Ko-Fi, et. al. aren't "adult businesses" even if they allow legal adult content creators on their platform any more than Amazon is an "adult business" if they let you buy books with explicit content.

That's a point I've always wondered about, actually; Amazon does let you buy books with explicit content, both text and visual (a search for Erika Moen's "Oh Joy Sex Toy" right now immediately showed it was available both in paperback and on both Kindle and Comixology!), so it's clearly not as verboten as the crowdfunding platforms make it sound. I know Amazon has the advantage of being Amazon -- MasterCard isn't gonna stop processing their transactions no matter what they sell -- but I also know a few very small publishers who sell erotic comics and that use Stripe and/or Square for payment processing. Again, those publishers aren't really "adult businesses," per se (not all their titles are adults-only).

I would really like a processor like Stripe -- or a competitor, but I suspect size matters in this case -- to step up and not ban legal adult material. Maybe even just in small steps, by explicitly exempting publishers or crowdfunding platforms that aren't exclusively adult.


To be clear, I meant "Stop fussing at people like Patreon and Buy Me A Coffee. The problem appears to be upstream and a real solution would need to somehow address the root cause, which is not these online platforms. Their hands are tied and taking a stand likely means going out of business."

Given that this is a Launch HN, that's all I'm going to say here. This is not really the time and place to hash this detail out.


Payment processors like Stripe rely on creator platforms like Patreon and BMaC for non-trivial portions of their business. That kind of demand is why Stripe Marketplace exists in the first place. If consumers aren't putting pressure on every step of the chain, that pressure won't work its way up to the payment processors.

In other words, if marketplaces themselves aren't going to Stripe and complaining, Stripe will not fix its Marketplace TOS. A really good way to create that demand is to hold businesses that build on top of these processors accountable.

If I build a calendar app on top of Facebook, and Facebook requires me to share all of my user data with them, you can make a reasonable argument that this is all Facebook's fault for having bad terms. But even so, if my users start asking me why all of their data is going to Facebook, that puts a lot of pressure on me to look for other platforms that have better terms, or complain to Facebook that their offering isn't good enough for me.

I'm not saying that Buy Me A Coffee should be abandoned or that I want it to fail. We don't want to block better platforms or decrease competition in the pursuit of perfection.

But even if on net Buy Me A Coffee is a good service, and even if we ultimately want it to succeed, and even if the owners genuinely can't do anything at all, it is still a good thing to force the owners to go through additional friction and to endure additional criticism because of their content decisions -- because if a better, more permissive payment processor ever pops up in the future, owners that have gone through that friction will be able to see a real business case for switching and revising their policies. When Stripe advertises its Marketplace services, platforms like Buy Me A Coffee will have an incentive to say, "yeah, but my users are still going to chew me out over your policies. How can you help me with that?"

Criticism of creator platforms over payment methods creates demand for better payment methods.


Mousing over the word "Terms" in "By signing up, you agree to our Terms." on the sign up page linked me to https://www.buymeacoffee.com/terms .

Mousing over doesn't work on mobile, of course. But "Terms" is a link, so tapping it on mobile works.

But... The link is styled identically to normal text, both on desktop and mobile! There is no way to know that it is a link until you actively interact with it.


Creators are already getting nickel and dimed. One of my big things when I was managing musicians (really my friends whose work I loved) was I continually refused to step into the that thick miasma of profiteering others in the industry practiced.

Many musicians, for example, make less than 50 percent on distribution deals with their labels. I'm leading with this because 5 percent on top of CC payment processors' 30 cents + 2.whatever% is completely unethical from where I'm standing. You can integrate Fosspay [1] with fewer bells and whistles but totally free except for CC processors' cut (exorbitant as that in itself may be).

We need to stop inserting ourselves between creators and their money. It isn't worth whatever valuation we're fetching and it doesn't justify making us rich while creators gratefully accept their pittance.

[1] https://github.com/ddevault/fosspay

EDIT: The word "free" is tossed around so frequently on https://www.buymeacoffee.com/ko-fi-alternative I feel I have to re-check my own reality of what free means. The service is very much not free when the price is being extracted from every purchase a customer makes.


This is essentially a Luddite argument. This particular product isn't going to be "inserting" itself anywhere, it's just a new way for creators to get paid. Over time, products like this expand the number of "creators" who actually get paid and make it easier to scale to bigger audiences.

Nobody is stopping you from putting your hat out on the street or signing with a huge label like you'd likely have to do a few decades ago.


And nobody's going to help money get from consumers to creators for free.

> I'm leading with this because 5 percent on top of CC payment processors' 30 cents + 2.whatever% is completely unethical from where I'm standing. You can integrate Fosspay [1] with fewer bells and whistles but totally free except for CC processors' cut (exorbitant as that in itself may be).

In what way does the existence of BuyMeACoffee stop anyone from using your solution? There's a reason someone does choose BuyMeACoffee instead of Fosspay. What you suggest is removing options for the creator, in what way is that good for them?

> You will need a number of things set up before you start:

> 1. An approved Stripe account

> 2. A mail server

> 3. A domain name and an SSL certificate

> 4. A web server to host fosspay on

Are you going to give theses creators the mail server, the domain name and the web server for free? Are you going to offer the maintenance of theses servers for free too? Let say they find a managed server for 10$ per month (which would be amazing), they would need to make more than 200$ a month in donation for it to be equivalent to 5%.

> It isn't worth whatever valuation we're fetching and it doesn't justify making us rich while creators gratefully accept their pittance.

Then they shouldn't take the offer... BuyMeACoffee doesn't own the market, they doesn't seems to have any monopoly tendencies, Fosspay will keep existing while BuyMyACoffee is there.

Why don't you start offering a platform for free to artist? Maybe do it for 2.5% instead, there not that many artist that can make 400$ of donation a month! If you believe that the valuation of 5% is that outrageous, it's because you believe the same can be done for much cheaper, than do it for much cheaper and offer it!


Hey, this is Jijo from Buy Me A Coffee. Thanks for the feedback! We believe 5% is a reasonable fee to build and maintain a platform that allows creators to connect with their audience and generate more income.

One way to look at it is the % of additional revenue they earn because of Buy Me A Coffee.


And I thought stripe's fees were murderous...

Stripe fees are murderous? Stop it.

They're companies. Stripe built exceptional payment processing software that makes it simpler for everyone. They deserve it.


How do you differentiate from https://ko-fi.com/? My partner has been using this for a year or so, and hasn't had much revenue.

Buy Me A Coffee is more than a simple donation button/link. We help creators set up memberships, publish members-only content, website widget and more. You can read the full comparison here - https://www.buymeacoffee.com/ko-fi-alternative

That said, we're big fans of all creator monetization companies like substack, patreon, ko-fi, etc.


One of the features you list over Ko-fi is a mobile app.

Why on Earth would I need a mobile app to use this? What does it provide that a well-designed mobile site doesn't?


I have no idea, but I'd assume the mobile app would be for use of the people receiving the money. Which would be a nice add if I were a content creator. But that's just a guess.

Edit: As for your notion that an app isn't necessary when there is a well-designed mobile site, I def agree. However, that's just not the case anymore, how else do you expect companies to so easily collect your personal data! /s

Edit2: Id wager some companies intentionally don't focus on having a nicely compatible mobile site. For example, my bank's website sucks when I visit from a mobile web browser, however their app is great. I believe this is their intention, in order for people to download their app. Which has obvious benefits for the company; in particular, the data collection


I make most of my rent drawing comics and getting via Patreon and I’ve never had any use for their app. YMMV.

yeah agreed. I prefer to not have to use an app if I don't have too. Or unless there's some great benefit that the app has that the mobile site doesn't

This goes beyond "similar".

The giant image on that page seems to be obscuring the Ko-Fi side of the table.

See here: https://i.imgur.com/MClWgIX.png

on Desktop, Firefox 70.0.1. 1440p monitor.

EDIT: happens on Chrome as well.


So how are you different to Patreon?

buymeacoffee.com has a single use coffee cup in their logo, while ko-fi.com has an environmentally friendly reusable cup. Might sound trivial because it is just virtual, but some may argue it is an indication of thought processes and values.

Nice idea though. You could have a Buy Me A Coffee link on your own site for those who like the idea but aren't customers.


it's literally the same idea

I bet Google's founders are glad they didn't consult you first when they were creating a search engine.

They had a pretty easy to understand value proposition - “our results are more useful than existing search engines’”.

“We have a different pricing model” is a lot less compelling. But it has worked before!


I'd respectfully disagree that that is the only difference. I've been through the BMC payment flow and would much prefer to use theirs over the competitor mentioned above. I wasn't even referring to the pricing model, although you're right, that is another difference too.

we'd all be better off if Google didn't exist, and you know it

This hits me with nostalgia. I had made the first buy me a beer / coffee plugin for the wordpress ecosystem back in 2007. People consistently were earning more from donations than from adsense through the plugin.

The idea wasn't originally mine. Paul Myers on the warriorforum used to have "buy me a beer" in his signature. I just ported it to wordpress. Its amazing to see you guys doing well.


whoa, it's great to hear from you. I'm pretty sure I've used your plugin on one of my blogs. thank you!

I’ve been following Buy Me A Coffee since it publicly launched (not today) and it’s great to see that a side project can get support from YC. It’s not an easy space.

I work winters as a snowboard instructor. Over a typical winter I’d teach literally hundreds of people. Every once in a while I’d get a gift card, if guest is American, I might even get a cash tip, but generally, it’s Snow School pay. So, I thought something like Buy Me Coffee might come handy...

Being the summer software developer that I am, I ended up building something from scratch. It has a slightly different “flavor” than Coffee, mainly trying to make it work better in real-life interactions. But it’s in the same problem space.

It’s here: https://www.feedback.land

Profiles look like this: https://www.feedback.land/ronilan

I run the experiment last winter. I’d have printed “business cards” with QR codes in my pocket (app makes a printable version for you) and I’d hand them out at the end of lessons (mittens snowflakes and all).

Bottom line. Got some feedback. That’s it ;)

Might give it another try this winter, but I’m generally off to other interests. If anyone has interest in the product/software (node/Mongo/react) contact is in HN profile.


To the stranger who left me feedback with an astute observation (but no email).

The box Abe is building won't work. He's got it wired wrong. And if they fix that I’ll start actually taking pieces out of it. It's just a gimmick. It doesn't work anymore. Your double will say they have to move on to something else. And mine will agree. They're friends.

It’s been a decade.


cool idea. I always thought it would be awesome to figure out IRL non-cash tipping

edit: and somehow make it not awkward, cumbersome, or time-consuming


There's a company called Mezu which does this - you'll never reveal your identity or personal info the people you tip and vice versa. https://www.mezu.com/

love it! and thank you for being an early user!

> unobtrusive way to monetize their work

I have seen this movie before and I know how it ends. [waves at Patreon]

Help me understand why this a venture scale business and not a non-profit, a benefit corporation, a co-op or some other model I am unaware that does not demand venture-scale returns.


By connecting creative economy types online and across the globe with their audience so that they can more easily engage in transactions/commerce is the definition of "venture scale". The only thing that separates business from non-profit is the tax designation, and how much ROI you plan to make for yourself/funders/public.

I see you getting downvoted, but I am fine with taking your comment at face value.

Here's the problem. Patreon, Buy Me a Coffee, etc are another middle man between creators and supporters.

That's another mouth to feed on top of Stripe/PayPal and possibly a Credit Card Company.

There is a very good reason PayPal has for eternity pushed/prodded and dark patterned users to death trying to get them to pay via bank transfer instead of credit card--credit card fees are business killers.

Now, why does this matter?

Even at venture scale, a Patreon/Buy Me a Coffee is the 2nd or 3rd middle man to the game. That means they need massive volume, but it's not enough. The perverse incentive cat is out of the bag and the good natured startup that just wanted to empower "creative economy types" starts doing all sorts of things that are in the company's best interest and not in its users' best interests.

Here is an HN thread from 18 days ago discussing the Patreon's CEO view that "the company's generous business model is not sustainable."

https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=21550645

So I asked OP, in frustration because this seems like a failure to learn from history (very recent history at that!), but also in earnest--why should Buy Me a Coffee be a venture-backed business and not some other model.


What's wrong with Patreon?

There are two big problems with Patreon that come to my mind immediately. One is repeated issues with kicking creators off for poorly explained reasons.

The other is that they seem to hate the idea of batching transactions. For me the biggest draw of Patreon is that I can have 10 $1 pledges and only pay one credit card fee each month. But they keep messing with the backend and they've forced new creators into a completely different system that does separate charges. According to them they don't even make more money off this, so why are they so stubbornly insistent on charging these pledges a 40% overhead?

Overall they don't listen very well, and they grabbed this big pile of VC cash to do god-knows-what with and motivate them way too much to increase fees.


> Patreon CEO says the company’s generous business model is not sustainable

https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=21550645


No pricing information before sign-up?

It's not likely that this is a novel idea to anyone signing up, so the number one thing they want to know (surely?) is 'how much are you skimming'.

Personally I'm not willing to sign-up first in the hope that maybe more 'how do I actually use this and what does it cost me' information is available afterwards.


sorry for the confusion. It was there until we recently redesigned our homepage to focus more on our creators and less on the features. We're planning to add an FAQ section on the homepage.

>we recently improved our homepage to focus more on our creators and less on our features.

I would reconsider that move imho.

I doubt many contributors are going to browse the homepage and try to contribute.

They will most likely only visit the subdomain of the contribution page they are trying to donate to.

New registrants on the other hand, who are interested in your service and it's features, will most likely visit the homepage first.


>I doubt many contributors are going to browse the homepage and try to contribute.

I agree. Our goal was to showcase the most common use-cases and types of creators who use us, and not for discoverability.


So... what is the pricing?

We charge a 5% platform fee. This is on top of the payment processing fee charged by Stripe and PayPal.

How does this compare to other major players, seems a bit pricey

Being in YC, I assume your plan is to be headquartered in the US, or at the very least, do business with US customers/entities.

I notice your team doesn't involve any compliance people. As you probably already know, you are a MSB in the US, do you have plans to expand your required compliance policies? Does your team already file on any potential BSA/AML concerns?

Or is this like a "when we get to that bridge we will cross it" type of thing?

As you grow larger, regulators will inevitably take notice. And I know this is probably a super boring question for mist people here, but as someone who works in BSA/AML compliance for a tech startup MSB -- I am very interested to hear what you have to say regarding this!

Love the site btw, the simplicity of the payment flow is A+. I could see this taking off.


first off, thank you for the kind words!

Payment fraud and AML - we're a PayPal and Stripe Partner and do not hold the money that we process. We use their marketplace products to handle payments, fraud and compliance so that we can focus on the product.


>Payment fraud and AML - we're a PayPal and Stripe Partner and do not hold the money that we process. We use their marketplace products to handle payments, fraud and compliance so that we can focus on the product.

If someone pays with paypal, can I still get the money in my stripe account? If not, what's the main benefit over using your service versus just using paypal and stripe directly? Do I still need to create a paypal account and a stripe account to use your service?


Yes, you need a PayPal or Stripe account to start receiving payments. The main benefits are the community and publishing features. You can share rewards or exclusive content with your supporters.

Also, a significant portion of the activity that we see is driven by gratitude. People love supporting a creator and leaving a positive note.


When I started using buy me a coffee(6 months ago?), the payment portal was Payoneer. Is my payment portal still valid or I need to migrate to Paypal/Stripe?

It is still valid, but we'd recommend connecting PayPal or Stripe for all these new features like instant payouts :)

Ahh interesting, thank you for the response. And yes the more I thought about it, the more I realized that you're basically a non-custodial payment processor (and idk even know if you'd be considered that). What type of business do you categorize as? Are you a payment processor? Or are you simply a UI markup for paypal/stripe? Im not implying one is better than the other, just curious

edit: now that I think about it, I would imply that one is better than the other. Because if you are just a UI/UX improvement on paypal/stripe, then you would be out of the regulatory umbrella of FinCen I believe.


I’m sure they use a third-party payment processor who handles AML for them.

yeah good point. especially since they don't have a sign-up, makes me think they're more non-custodial in concept, which eases their AML requirements

I've been using this for a few days now on my own blog [1], but so far it isn't "catching on". That is to say, the revenue I seem to be making from a donation system like this is still many times smaller than a traditional advertising system or promotion of reflink services.

This isn't an issue with Buy Me a Coffee, I think it's a fundamental issue with how we perceive value of things we read & ingest online. It's hardly ever apparent how much time the author spent on a piece and the consumption of it might only take 2 minutes. Most people don't value online content to be valuable - after all, anyone can do it - right?

In my case, with ~10.000 pageviews/day (mostly helpdesk-style articles) I get about 1 coffee donation per day. Detract any costs by CC processor and the service itself, and what's left is about 0.70€ (that's 70 cents).

[1] https://ma.ttias.be/blog/


Hey, I just came across your tweet [1] and wanted to say that we think about this a lot. The most effective way to attract more contributions is to offer something extra or exclusive. Obviously, this is not possible for everyone, so we designed Buy Me A Coffee in a way that every supporter and their comment gets featured on the top. We then notify the creators and encourage them to reply. This way, the act of supporting itself becomes the reward.

Thanks again for the feedback, and thank you for your blog!

[1] https://twitter.com/mattiasgeniar/status/1202111712264163328


Nice personal site. I like the design.

You really need to optimize tge landing page for mobile clients. Im using a powerful android phone and it struggles to load. Just shows a blank page.

You should also remove the letter by letter animation on the headline. I don't have time to read all of nouns you have listed. Just cycle through whole words using a faster tick speed.

And better yet, turn this landing page into a static one without any JS. Conversion numbers will be more reliable because people wont be quickly bouncing while waiting for the page to load.


> Im using a powerful android phone and it struggles to load.

I'm on a powerful 8-core desktop with a dedicated GPU and the page really stutters while scrolling. I'm not sure what the deal is since there really isn't anything super graphically intensive on the page.


I don't use JavaScript and the page scrolled fine. No links worked, but it scrolled smoothly.

We do! Sorry for the bad experience. It's a fairly new design implementation and we have a lot of work to do to optimize the homepage.

Fixed!

Broken for me in latest mobile Chrome.

Holy shit, you folks have gotten a lot of negativity out of HN today. I don’t have anything negative to say. Congratulations on making it into YC and getting to launch! You’ve got a great story.

I’m about to launch something that could use this. I’ll sign up in a few days.

Best of luck and congratulations on your launch!!


haha, thank you so much!

I'm at jijo@buymeacoffee if you have any questions while setting up your page.


Congratulations on your announcement, I’ve been following you and Buy Me A Coffee for a while.

If I remember correctly, you got accepted to YC with a different idea — some sort of podcast app. Can you explain why you decided to pivot back to Buy Me A Coffee?


Agreed. This is a little weird. I wonder if they got YC's "OK" to use the Launch HN tag with (YC W19) for a product that was not actually within the batch. It's a little deceiving.

We are the same company/team, and our goal is to help creators get paid for their work. With Brew, we focused on audio creators. Everything we built so far revolved around this vision :)

I don't want to speak for YC, but the partners want you to iterate and succeed. Many of the successful YC companies (Reddit, Brex) got accepted for a completely different idea.


I’m not trying to imply anything nefarious is going on. I am genuinely interested in the story.

Thank you!

Our insight after getting into the audio space was that podcasters are relatively happy with monetization. This is obviously not a popular opinion, but that's what we saw first hand. Ad rates are pretty good, and unlike other content types, listeners enjoy host-read ads. Meanwhile, Buy Me A Coffee started getting a decent amount of traction even among podcasters, so we wanted to go all in and build it out :)


> If I remember correctly, you got accepted to YC with a different idea

That'd be Brew [0]: https://brew.com

As for the pivot, I'm not sure it qualifies as a pivot since buymeacoffee.com predates brew.com. Separate businesses, and it seems to me they're simply re-announcing buymeacoffee again [1] and possibly shifting focus to make it the main product.

Another YC company https://kyte.ai (AI for SMS inboxes) did that recently and pivoted to https://khatabook.com (Credit/Debit Book Keeping app for Indian SMBs) [2].

Of course, https://brex.com famously did the same, too (not launch with the idea they applied / did YC with) [3].

[0] https://www.ycdb.co/company/brew-com

[1] https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=16484040

[2] https://www.ycdb.co/company/khatabook

[3] https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=17418813


Yes, which is why I said “pivot back”. It doesn’t seem like Brew is still a focus — and I’m curious /why/. Is it simply because BMAC already had adoption and a new podcast app is a hard sell? Is Brew still in development?

I did a similar project for a hackathon several years back, we made a service that let you buy someone a drink (presumably alcoholic) at a bar near where they live. Creators would choose the bars and patrons would sponsor a beer/wine/etc at a particular bar. We would recover payment processing fees from bars which would sell us drinks at a significant discount (so the $5 beer you bought for someone cost us $2 - $3). We incentivized bar owners by pointing out that most people would only be redeeming one or two drinks, after which they would likely pay for additional ones.

Thankfully none of us quit our day jobs to pursue the idea - aside from personally receiving ~$200 of free drinks at an SF bar where we knew the owner (presumably funded by hackathon participants who enjoyed our presentation), we couldn't get bars to sign up - nobody wanted to train their bartenders on how to accept our virtual drink coupons, especially without a guarantee of a large audience. We did sign up a couple content creators, which is how we learned that even a large following doesn't translate to much patronage.


The implementation looks pretty slick to me!

If you're taking care of most/all the technical details, the only blocker that would prevent me from this kind of service is the unknown legal/compliance work I'd need to do in order to start taking this kind of money and have access to those users' data - is that something you can provide guidance on?


thank you, raul! yes, we have spent a fair bit of time to tackle these for our creators. Please drop me a line at jijo at buymeacoffee. We'd love to get you started!

I've been a user for over a year. It has worked well for people to use as an alternative to github sponsors and open collective. When i joined i got a single letter vanity page... https://www.buymeacoffee.com/j probably not what they would have intended...

:) yeah, we stopped accepting usernames with less than 3 chars, but thank you for being an early user!

How do the instant payments work? Is my paypal going to get shut down for months due to a "fraud" alert being triggered from having tons of random payments sent to me?

This seems like a great way to quickly cash out stolen credit card numbers to a bank account - how do you differentiate between something like that and simply a creator that got to the front page of Reddit and had a huge spike of legitimate traffic? If you fall over in the latter case, I'd be extremely pissed. (And if your answer is to rely on Stripe's fraud detection, it's very likely they will block exactly this kind of spike in usage from an otherwise unknown account).

Finally, can you actually make money from a credit card payment of $1 when you only charge a 5% fee?


Hi great story! I have been watching Buy Ma Coffee for a couple of years now and I had no idea it was a side project. How do you monetize Buy Me a Coffee? Do you just take a cut from the contributions made? or do you have a different model?

thank you! Yes, we take a 5% cut like Kickstarter.

>thank you! Yes, we take a 5% cut like Kickstarter.

So if someone donates $1, I would receive 95c in my bank account?

How do you make money on this when Stripe is likely charging you quite a bit more than 5c in transaction fees?


They charge 5% besides any Stripe or Paypal fees. The users connect their own Stripe and Paypal accounts and Buy Me a Coffee charges a platform fee.

This seems like a great service! I will definitely be setting up an account to cover the cost of running my podcast.

If you don't mind me asking, What makes Buy Me a Coffee different from setting up a Patreon or a go fund me?


awesome - we'd love to have you on the platform!

technically, the biggest difference is that you can also accept one-time payments using Buy Me A Coffee, and not just memberships. We see more than half of the payments from one-time contributions. More comparison here - https://www.buymeacoffee.com/patreon-alternative


The community feedback and rewards features are really interesting and remind me a lot of the Twitch model which is wildly successful. How do you plan to bridge the gap between user's eagerness to donate to a twitch streamer versus their historically poor record of donating to a blog via a donate button? I think its definitely possible but the form-factor of the content (video w/validation through a strong emotional reaction by the streamer versus the abyss of blog comments/email) really matters.

Twitch partially inspired many of our features. In fact, a big chunk of our active users are YouTubers who don't have a viable alternative to monetize directly (https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=buymeacoffee.co...). Same with Instagram influencers and Podcasters. Our goal is to help them connect with their "superfans" through shout-outs, rewards, and exclusive content.

To answer your question, we have seen that users are more eager to pay when creators host their best work on the platform. Here's an example - https://freebird.buymeacoffee.com/


Appreciate the reply, and I do think this idea has legs if grown thoughtfully and realistically. Hope to be a happy user some day!

I came across your twitter profile a couple of times, wasn't it called brew before? It was initially something like a patreon clone then became a podcasts app if IIRC and now it looks like you're back to buy me a coffee. Can you talk a little about the journey of what you learned through the different pivots and what you learned along the way? Can you also talk about your experience in YC? Good luck.

I'm getting about 90% whitespace on the home page (using a Pixel 2). I have to scroll loads to get to the bottom 5% of content. Just an FYI

fixed -- thank you for taking the time to report this!

If Patreon were to add a feature to do one-time, no sign-up required contributions to any of the orgs currently using it, would this be survivable for you?

Do you have ideas of ways to increase value to make using your service over others more worthwhile or is the one-time, no sign-up required contribution process the primary feature right now?


that's a great question! broadly, I think it's an overkill for certain types of creators (say an Instagrammer or Twitch streamer) to launch a Patreon. Buy Me A Coffee is a far more casual and friendly way to accept contributions from your fans. We also differentiate from Patreon in a lot of ways. For e.g., creators love that we're putting fans/supporters in the front-and-center (like Twitch), which also encourages more contributions.

A copy of Patreon to encourage your favorite creators to get addicted to a substance that has very negative side-effects when you quit it.

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/this-is-how-yo...

Well done.


Does "buy me a coffee" support, or plan to support, the option to send money directly to charities rather than creators? I feel like this would make both the creator and the consumer feel their money is doing the most good, as it's both thanking the creator and helping someone in need at the same time.

Part of that could be to create a new class of payee, and then add an integration so that a creator can internally redirect payments to a particular payee. As part of the redirect you register something separate from a "payment" that you would display for the creator's page ("N people have donated Z dollars to Y on behalf of X"), and then the final payee would also have its own independent "payment" register ("N people have donated Z dollars to Y"). Don't know what the tax implications (if any) would be.


Awesome stuff ... looks great! Tiny bug when I go to: https://thesundaypaper.buymeacoffee.com/ and I press the burger icon and explore creators then I get a 404.

Hope that helps and keep kicking asses!


noted, thank you!

Buy Me a Coffee tells exactly the kind of story that DLT (blockchain) startups often tell - connect creators with their fan base etc., just the "let's cut out the middlemen" is obviously missing.

I totally get why you'd go for Stripe to build a mature, scalable product open to as many users as possible. But just out of curiosity: did you spend some time thinking about DLT to cut out middlemen, did you actively decide against it, are you experimenting with it - what's your stance?


I am looking for a service that will allow me to directly pay creators at the same price as an ad impression, paying per page view. So far ways to pay creators are almost always based on dollar increments, but I would have much more use for a service that lets you pay in increments of $0.001. Today this is basically impossible because payment fees make direct payments of this scale impractical, but it could theoretically be solved the way the ad industry does - by paying a lump some once a month.

Have you seen BAT and Brave? Seems like exactly what you're describing.

Flattr did exactly this.

Been using it for a while and like it so far. A downside for me is that from every $3 coffee paid by supporters, I only receive $2.39 in my Paypal account :(

>Been using it for a while and like it so far. A downside for me is that from every $3 coffee paid by supporters, I only receive $2.39 in my Paypal account :(

Their pricing page claims the fee is only 5%. Is this not true?


From what I've read in this thread it sounds like:

Donor $ -> PayPal/Stripe, subtract Coffee's taste with Coffee never touching the donor's money per their comments in this thread -> Creator's PayPal/Stripe minus any PayPal/Stripe fees.

I'm guessing that's just PayPal taking their cut from the creator on top of Coffee taking their cut. It looks like they had an idea, got into YC, then were like "eh, let's just be Patreon 2: Electric Boogaloo." and then did the payment processing the simplest way they could.

This effectively makes it: "Don't pay the creator via PayPal/Stripe, instead let us act as a pseudo-affiliate and go ahead and keep 5% of that for ourselves and then we'll tell PayPal/Stripe to pay the donor for you. In exchange we'll tell people that visit our website that you supported the creator".

It appears they add no value to the transaction that can't already be obtained from Patreon. They're just a much smaller outfit, with a horribly buggy website with partially baked features and apparently consistently unpleasant mobile experience.


We charge a 5% platform fee. This is on top of any transaction fees charged by PayPal or Stripe.

True, the payment processing fee for micro-transactions is pretty high. PayPal and Stripe charge a flat $0.30 + 2.9%.

We designed the 'pay what you want' model on Buy Me A Coffee to tackle this problem.


Okay, deep breath, this will be unpleasant.

1. Do you ban creators for "hate speech"? 1b. If yes: What is "hate speech"?

2. Will you ban creators for content published outside your platform? (e.g. erotic content published on other platforms but not mentioned in their BmaC profile)

3. Will you ban creators for content completely unrelated to your platform? (e.g. drunken Twitter rants)


As someone who will eventually have to deal with this, is there an advantage to using "Buy Me A Coffee" over just implementing a Stripe/Pay Pal interface for myself (assuming I have the skills and time to do so)?

I'm mostly interested in payment workflow discussions. I actually don't care about sales/marketing possibilities.


Love the feature where creators can message their supporters. Congrats on the HN launch!

thanks - glad you like it! :)

Hey, just wanted to let you know your developers page is not working: https://developers.buymeacoffee.com/

Hey there, thanks for letting me know. Developer features are in beta -- I have removed the link from the footer.

I really hope this is the way content creation funding goes in the future.

Connecting with the audience directly is always a great outcome for creators!

5% fee + "Payment processing fees charged by PayPal and Stripe are also applicable."

So a donate button from paypal is equivalent but the creator can save 5%?


Among the other things their terms say something in tune of:

  If you hurt us in any way you are liable for damages

  If we hurt you: f.. off, tough luck

> Membership-only content.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LTJvdGcb7Fs :)


I'm not sure "useful content" should be the only metric. Think of all the things you learn in school that you think are useless until later.

There are already two "buy me a coffee" websites - Open Collective and Patreon - for any project other than (or used by) Webpack and Babel.

What is your motivation of doing YC now? and how do you plan to scale your market share?

Nice! I tried something similar with pint.me a long time ago with some friends in Bend.

So you've made ko-fi.com

But with VC funding!

I cannot find any info about rates, or how expensive this is

We charge a 5% platform fee. So if you earn $50 on Buy Me A Coffee, we'll take $2.5 as our cut.

Does this work in Canada? I like coffee.

Yes!

Great work, thank you!

Thanks!

>We do not allow adult content

I just expressly wanted to un-thank you for this.

Sincerely hope you would either change this - or fail. It's 2019, and "adult" content creators could do with less of this nonsense.

Erotic content creators (let's call things what they are) drink coffee too.


We hate to do this, but payment providers have clear terms around hosting adult content. I sincerely hope this will change one day.

Thanks for the response and consideration - and my apologies for wrongly assigning the blame.

Several questions:

1. Which payment providers specifically?

2. What do you mean by "hosting", and what are the rules?

3. Do I understand it correctly that adult content creators can use your service as long as their actual buymeacoffee.com page does not show "adult content"

3a. If so, it would be better if you clarified this with a <see more> link after the "no adult content" blurb.

4. Since the restrictions come from payment providers, you would be better off telling what the restrictions are and where they come from to avoid confusion.


to answer #1

- stripe: https://stripe.com/restricted-businesses

"Pornography and other obscene materials (including literature, imagery and other media) depicting nudity or explicitly sexual acts; sites offering any sexually-related services such as prostitution, escorts, pay-per view, adult live chat features; sexually oriented items (e.g., adult toys); adult video stores and sexually oriented massage parlors; gentleman’s clubs, topless bars, and strip clubs; sexually oriented dating services"

- paypal: https://www.paypal.com/us/smarthelp/article/faq569

"We don’t permit PayPal account holders to buy or sell: Sexually oriented digital goods or content delivered through a digital medium. Downloadable pictures or videos and website subscriptions are examples of digital goods. Sexually oriented goods or services that involve, or appear to involve, minors. Services whose purpose is to facilitate meetings for sexually oriented activities."

- amazon: https://pay.amazon.com/help/6023

"Adult Oriented Products and Services — includes pornography (including child pornography), sexually explicit materials (in all media types such as Internet, phone, and printed materials), dating services, escort services, or prostitution services."

so on and so forth. it's questionable whether this site would break those rules, since they aren't directly selling anything. otoh, it's likely the payment processors would shut them down and so probably not worth the risk.


TL;DR: this does NOT answer #1 as buymeacoffee.com is not a store. It's a donation platform. You do NOT pay for any goods or services there, "adult-oriented" or otherwise.

As you said: they aren't directly selling anything. In fact, they are not selling anything at all, directly or not.

"it's likely the payment processors would shut them down and so probably not worth the risk" --> so.. FUD. As I said, we need less of that. One way to avoid it is getting an explicit answer from the payment provider, and quoting it on the TOS on BuyMeACoffee.

BuyMeAcoffee, are you simply deflecting the blame on payment providers? Please tell us what restrictions made you make this choice. It still doesn't seem to be a reasonable one.

_________________

I fail to see how Buy Me A Coffee would fall under these restrictions, as the payments are not made in exchange for any of the restricted categories.

The payment is for coffee, if you wish. Joking aside, no goods or services are being sold on buymeacoffee.com pages. You get nothing for paying. You can't violate these TOS if the recipients happens to do something "adult-oriented".

So, to clarify:

1. These ToS don't restrict the kind of content that may be displayed on buymeacoffee.com page, just the kind of transactions.

2. Buymeacoffee.com is a donation site; the payments are not made in exchange for any goods or services, sexual ("adult") or otherwise.

3. PayPal/Stripe do not restrict who can get the money. What the recepients do outside of the transaction is none of their business anyway.

Therefore, I repeat the question: what makes you restrict "adult content" on your pages?

Restricting the kinds of content that recipients create would be even more nonsensical. In the same vein, it would be stupendous to say that you can't sell a rug on eBay because you also posted an adult cartoon on deviantart.com at some point in your life.


If I had an upvote button, I would on this response.

I was critical of your previous comment, but these are the questions I think deserve an answer for this general concern. Good on you, and thank you for asking them.


> If I had an upvote button

You don't have an upvote button?


I used to, but did something change a while back with how HN handles profiles and upvotes? I just don't see an upvote button...maybe I really, really don't see it? lol

FWIW, I’m in the same boat. Something got mixed up on the backend and they gave me two downvote buttons by mistake.

I don’t believe it’s up to them, but their payment processor. E.g. if you would use Stripe for adult content, you wouldn’t be able to process any payments at all quite quickly.

That's a bit jilted, no? It might not be the popular stance, or even one the founders philosophically/morally agree with individually. However:

- They appear to be forthright with this information. (That's certainly better than terminating users.)

- Aren't they at the mercy of the payment processor?

If the demand still stands for a "buy-me-a-coffee-for-erotic-content", then couldn't anyone else create that service? I empathize with your frustration, but I reject the sentiment that Buy Me a Coffee has intentionally done anything wrong.


That was absolutely jilted, but I think we made amends in the above comment thread :)

Sure did :) and I went back to mention that in a later comment.

It's all good!


like someone else said, it's likely not up to them. i had looked into starting a market place for that kinda stuff, since they're constantly kicked off of every other platform. but almost no payment processor allows you to do it.

[flagged]


I downvoted you, for a number of reasons.

1) There is no collective 'we'

2) there is no collectively defined 'filth'

3) 'your filth' seems like a personal attack.

I hope they figure out how to include everyone in their service, rather than a discriminatorily chosen group of people at their payment processors' whims.

Meanwhile payment processors are okay with 'filth' at every other level of their businesses -- don't paint them as wholesome, they're just legally cautious.

Also, for the sake of this discussion, let's re-evaluate what adult content is; it's not just pornography.


>No, it's ok, we've had enough of your filth

1. Who is "we"?

2. What my filth?

3. Game of Thrones, until the unfortunate last season, has been one of the most successful ever, and it was notorious for "adult" content (read: sex and violence). It is mainstream.

So please get off the high horse, there is clearly enough demand and acceptance of "adult" content in mainstream culture.

Individual artists would benefit from the ability to get paid in the case they don't luck out and get HBO to back them, though.


> your filth

That got personal, I like selling adult books like Don Quijote, Brave New World and 1984... but keep getting banned on other platform.


Why such a puritanical view? When payment providers rescind access at whim, nobody wins.

Nice. A lot better than alcohol.

"But me a coffee" isn't literally coffee. It's a way of asking for $5 or so but making it sound more palatable as "well you are just buying a mate a coffee" which people normally do rather than "you are transacting $5 on the internet to a stranger" which people might be more reluctant to do.

But the money won't be spent on coffee, otherwise the influencer will OD. "Buy me a chance to escape the rat race" might be a more accurate title.


well, users can also use buymeabeer.com if they like :)

that's pretty funny. :)

as a creator myself I would be interested in a buymeamacbook.com platform

lol ok i should add this to feature requests - https://building.buymeacoffee.com/feature-requests

Can't you do that with an Amazon Wish List?

I have always made sure to recommend to my fellow influencer friends about Buymeacoffee and they are thanking me for a wonderful product you have implemented!

Awesome work guys! Thank you team BMAC !


that's awesome - thank you so much!



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