24 Sep 2021 · 3 min read

Tweet and Get Bitcoin - Twitter Enables BTC Tips Over Lightning Network

Source: Adobe/natanaelginting

Jack Dorsey-led social media giant Twitter is launching its Tips feature, allowing 18+ years old users to tip each other with bitcoin (BTC), among other means.

According to the company, people can now tip with BTC using Strike – a payments application built on the Bitcoin Lightning Network that is now being used in El Salvador.

The new feature is being rolled out to iOS users first, while Android devices should support Twitter tips "over the coming weeks."

"People in the eligible markets will have to sign up for a Strike account and add their Strike username to receive Bitcoin tips over the Lightning Network. You can use any Bitcoin Lightning wallet to send tips to someone’s Strike account," per the company.

At 04:24 UTC, BTC trades at USD 44,336 and is up by 0.4% in a day, while almost all other major coins are in red today.

 

Per Twitter’s website, people for whom the Tips option is available will see the money icon on the profile pages of people who have set up Tips on their profile. It instructs users how to set the service up, adding that:

“When you add a third-party payment service to your profile, please note that your username on that service will be publicly linked to your Twitter account. Information about you, including, but not limited to, your full name, address and your tip may be shared with the recipient or others, subject to the terms of the third-party payment service.”

While Twitter doesn’t charge fees, third-party payment services may, they said.

It’s also unsurprising that a major news like this would come with a variety of opinions.

One aspect being discussed is how many people will actually be able to use this. While Twitter has more than 353m monthly active users, the Cryptoverse stresses that being a Twitter user alone is not enough to activate the tipping service – users state that one needs a Lightning Network wallet, as well as actual BTC in it in order to tip, while the receiver needs Strike, a custodial wallet that comes with the know-your-customer requirement for withdrawal.

Speaking of wallets, a point of confusion popped up when it comes to which wallets are supported for sending and/or receiving tips. Users online claim that they've managed to send tips using certain other wallets, but that Strike is needed for receiving the tip. 

Furthermore, many of those who do have BTC haven’t tried Lightning payments yet, as Alex Gladstein, Chief Strategy Officer of the Human Rights Foundation tweeted

Per Gladstein, some trial screenshots suggest that the team may include a “functionality where users can plug in their own non-custodial Lightning wallet straight into Twitter.”

There were also Apple / iPhone-related complaints already. Some said that there needs to be a way to change the default Lightning wallet opened by Twitter when a tip is sent, others added that they had to keep “clicking copy wallet address instead of open wallet,” adding: “Blame Apple for that one,” and “It’s not Twitter, it’s iPhone.”

“Bitcoin maxis having a field day today,” wrote Carl Vogel, Senior Product Manager at Paxos. “Twitter integration of Lightning is great for [the] industry,” he said, adding: “but expect measured adoption for some time due to friction points for mass-market.”

Naturally, there are some discussions specifically between Ethereum (ETH) and Bitcoin supporters, with the former camp arguing that, should non-fungible tokens (NFTs) be added to Twitter, they “aren’t going to be on Bitcoin, they are going to be on Ethereum.” However, NFTs are also available on other blockchains that are competing with Ethereum.

This is a reference to the reports that the company is planning to enable users to connect their wallets and authenticate the ownership of NFTs they tweet with a special badge.

Lastly, there were also some tax questions posed:

Cryptonews.com has reached out to Twitter for comment. 

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Learn more: 
- Twitter Reportedly to Enable Adding Bitcoin & Ethereum Addresses to Profiles 
- Dorsey Justifies His Pro-Bitcoin Stance, Says He Is ‘Not Trolling’ Ethereum 

- Technically Capable Bitcoin Has Other Mass Adoption Challenges To Solve 
- Twitter's Bluesky Finds New Lead, Square Building the Bitcoin Wallet Team 
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(Updated at 5:12 UTC with a video. Updated at 09:09 UTC with additional details and comments.)