Reports indicate that the micro-blogging platform, Twitter (NASDAQ shares: TWTR), is testing in beta a feature that will allow a real revolution, using Bitcoin. According to leaked tweets, the functionality will be facilitated via Jack Maller's wallet service, Strike, which is powered by the Bitcoin Lightning Network.
Bitcoin on everyone's lips!
As reported by MacRumors, the latest Twitter beta update introduces support for providing content creators with Bitcoin tips using the “Tip Jar” feature introduced earlier this year. The report states that Bitcoin is not yet available for selection as a hint option in the release, but a closer analysis of the code suggests that Twitter is in the process of rolling it out to beta users and possibly eventually all users.
Mobile developer Alessandro Paluzzi also leaked an image of what the service will be like. Details in the leaked image indicate that users will be directed through a Bitcoin tutorial that includes details about the Bitcoin Lightning network and custodian and non-custodian Bitcoin wallets.
Based on the image, Twitter is clearly working closely with the Bitcoin Lightning App Strike and will use the service to generate bitcoin bills. As a result, Twitter users will need a Strike account to receive suggestions via the Lightning Network.
The addition of such an option is in line with Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey's promise to investors that Bitcoin was important to the company and would come to Tip Jar in the future. Currently, Twitter allows users to add Bandcamp, Cash App, Patreon, PayPal, and Venmo links to their Twitter profiles.
What is Bitcoin Lightning Network
Bitcoin Lightning Network is a layer 2 scalability solution applied to Bitcoin that uses micropayment channels to scale its blockchain's ability to conduct transactions more efficiently. The way it does this is by taking transactions off the main blockchain and leading them onto its network. These transactions are much faster, cheaper and more readily confirmed than those conducted directly on the Bitcoin blockchain (i.e. on-chain). This is useful to Bitcoin as it solves the congestion problem that has plagued the main chain.
It is therefore not surprising that it is seriously considered on Twitter, as Jack Dorsey has been a voice promoter of Bitcoin and has stated his commitment to driving its adoption. See Bitcoin as "the native currency of the Internet".
Companies from Dorsey, Square and Twitter continue to work on Bitcoin-related projects. More recently in Square, work has begun on developing a Bitcoin hardware wallet, as well as a decentralized Bitcoin exchange. This adds to the fact that Square's payment platform CashApp already facilitates Bitcoin trading.
Dorsey also considered the idea of receiving Bitcoin as a form of payment for advertising. When asked by Elon Musk, during their round table in July, whether the platform would accept Bitcoin as a payment for advertising, while not giving a direct affirmative answer, he did not rule out the possibility. He said that if users want to pay in Bitcoin, the company is obliged to take it into consideration. It remains to be seen what the final outcome will be; there are strong indications that Twitter could eventually accept Bitcoin as a payment.