February 20, 2015
Stripe and Bitcoin
We’re excited to see our friends at Stripe enable thousands of merchants to accept bitcoin payments alongside their existing elegant credit card services. Now Stripe customers can increase security, lower fees, and speed up settlement globally by making a few small changes in services they may already be using, such as Stripe Checkout.
This is progress. Anyone using Circle or a bitcoin wallet can buy goods and services from participating Stripe merchants without joining a network, without applying for membership, and without funneling their payments through a central fee-charging authority.
People no longer need to ask permission to participate in global payments, and developers no longer need to ask permission to innovate on top of payment rails. An ecosystem is emerging in which anyone can innovate and improve asset transfer in a way that helps us all, without relying on any person or any company’s permission to do so.
That fact may seem obvious. After all, that’s how the Internet and open protocols want to work: delivery of data from one point to another isn’t a business model, it’s a nearly-free utility upon which new business models grow. Contributing content to the Internet does not require permission. Anyone can send an email, share a photo, write an app, create a Web site, or join a global discussion.
But that simply hasn’t been the case when it comes to payments and asset transfer. Up until now, the Internet of e-commerce has entailed using HTTP only to connect a series of closed networks to one another through monolithic fee-charging central routers. It’s similar to those days when we could send digital messages to friends so long as we all happened to be on the same dial-up online service. To no one’s surprise, email built on open protocols is more useful and less costly.
So now we finally have payments routed from the beginning through an open protocol and on an open, easily-audited ledger -- not simply closed networks stovepiped to the Internet, but an actual open network for value transfer.
We’re thrilled to see Stripe contribute to this ecosystem!
If you’re a developer, check out their official documentation.