WordPress to accept bitcoins due to PayPal, credit card blocks

The blogging platform said accepting bitcoins will open up payments from countries not served by PayPal and credit cards

WordPress said Thursday it will accept bitcoins, opening up the blogging platform to payments from users in countries not supported by PayPal or credit card companies.

WordPress is free, open-source software, but the company Automattic offers paid-for features such as blog designs, custom domains, hosting partnerships and anti-spam measures.

As with many Web-based services, payments for those features are dependent on credit card transactions and eBay's PayPal service. But WordPress wrote on its blog that PayPal doesn't serve more than 60 countries, and credit card companies have restrictions due to political, fraud and other reasons.

"Whatever the reason, we don't think an individual blogger from Haiti, Ethiopia, or Kenya should have diminished access to the blogosphere because of payment issues they can't control," WordPress said. "Our goal is to enable people, not block them."

How Haiku is building a better BeOS
What's your idea worth? Building a social knowledge market with Barter
AmigaOS 4 developer interview: Why it endures and what the future holds
Syllable OS: Creating a better desktop operating system
Open Source Spotlight - OpenStack: Building a more open Cloud

Bitcoin is an electronic currency that uses a cryptographic system to verify transactions. A bitcoin has no physical representation, such as government-issued paper or metal currencies, in that the coin itself is an encrypted number that is stored on a person's computer. It has a fluctuating value based on market demand, and as of Friday, was worth around US$11.20.

Hackers can steal bitcoins from a person's computer, but the system is generally immune to many of the kinds of fraud affecting PayPal and credit card companies.

Merchants benefit since there are no chargebacks: If you spend a bitcoin, the transaction cannot be reversed due to unauthorized fraudulent spending unless the merchant decides to send it back to the purchaser. Transactions are verified by the bitcoin system within an hour, and merchants do not need to collect sensitive personal information from users.

Since bitcoin's debut in 2009, a small but growing number of merchants are accepting the currency, but it has not seen mass adoption in part due to a lack of easy-to-use software tools, an unstable exchange rate and concerns over how governments may regulate it. Bitcoins can be acquired through exchanges, which often require cash bank transfers.

WordPress said it is using BitPay.com, a Florida-based company, to handle its bitcoin transactions. BitPay provides an API (application programming interface) for e-commerce sites that processes bitcoin transactions and handles the exchange from bitcoins back to cash, which is transferred to the merchant.

"With Bitcoin we join a new digital economy that doesn't leave anyone behind, essentially making financial transactions open source -- something WordPress.com is behind 100 percent," WordPress said.

Send news tips and comments to jeremy_kirk@idg.com. Follow me on Twitter: @jeremy_kirk

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags internete-commerceWordpressInternet-based applications and services

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jeremy Kirk

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?