Micro-blogging site Twitter has started rolling out a new Tip Jar feature on its Android and iOS apps, which will allow users to send money directly to their favourite Tweeters. To use the tip jar, users need to tap on a newly-added dollar bill icon next to someone’s username when viewing their profile on one of Twitter’s mobile apps. Users will be able to toggle the tip jar feature too, in case they don’t want people randomly sending them cash. Android users will also be able to send money to their favourite tweeters in Twitter’s Clubhouse-like feature Spaces. The Twitter Tip Jar supports a variety of payment options and links – Bandcamp, Cash App, Patreon, PayPal, and Venmo. Twitter is not taking a cut from transactions that are taking place in Tip Jar. The feature is live for users of the Twitter mobile app for both Android and iOS, and users can start sending or receiving tips on the platform starting now.
Twitter’s new Tip Jar initiative will allow users to monetise their Twitter profile. The company, in its blog post, said that the feature is only limited to a certain set of people including Creators, Journalists, Experts, and Non-profits. However, it said that soon, more people will be able to add Tip Jar to their profile and it will expand to more languages. Currently, only English language tweets can receive tips. “We $ee you – sharing your PayPal link after your Tweet goes viral, adding your $Cashtag to your profile so people can support your work, dropping your Venmo handle on your birthday or if you just need some extra help,” the company said in its blog post. “You drive the conversation on Twitter and we want to make it easier for you to support each other beyond Follows, Retweets, and Likes,” the company said.
Twitter has, since a long time been used to promote people’s ventures, gain more followers, and even get donations in some cases. We have all come across viral tweets, where the author has plugged their work, or social media profile, or a petition form, or in some cases, links for donations or tips in a threaded tweet. Hence, it makes sense for Twitter to introduce a Tip Jar feature, so that such users can make an extra buck, if their tweet goes viral.
The only way to access Tip Jar right now is by navigating to a user’s profile. This means that sending someone money for a tweet will take a bit more effort than just liking or comment, or eve re-tweeting a tweet.
It is not known as to how safe adding payment details on Twitter is, as spotted by security expert Rachel Tobac (via The Verge), sending tips through PayPal using Twitter Tip Jar allows all senders to see the recepient’s address, an issue both Twitter and Paypal are expected to find a solution to. Twitter later responded to the issue, saying, “updating our tipping prompt and Help Center to make it clearer that other apps may share info between people sending/receiving tips, per their terms.”