[Politech] Jim Davidson on the (many) alternatives to Paypal [fs]

From: Declan McCullagh (declan@private)
Date: Tue Sep 28 2004 - 21:07:06 PDT

-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Re: [Politech] Paypal reportedly penalizes opinionated 
liberals, conservatives
Date: Mon, 27 Sep 2004 16:06:06 -0500
From: Jim Davidson <davidson@private>
To: Declan McCullagh <declan@private>
CC: dgcchat@private

Dear Declan and Friends,

Thanks for your messages.  This week has been especially interesting
to me.  I've long regarded PayPal as a very poor choice for people
interested in online payment systems.

Difficulties with PayPal are pretty widely reported on sites such as
http://www.paypalwarning.com/ and elsewhere, but alternative payment
services are not so widely known, it seems.  I report on the many
alternatives in the free market money section of my Indomitus Report
every week.  See http://indomitus.net/ for details.  The free sample
issue covers a large number of the alternatives.

Briefly, these include e-gold.com with several million accounts, some
$30 million in current circulation, and around a billion dollars a
year in throughput.  Numerous sites with tutorials, such as
  http://ezez.com/  which is my personal favorite.  For the offshore
enthusiast, there is 1MDC.com which works with e-gold but stores data
about your transactions in Anguilla. Both e-gold and 1MDC offer
excellent automation systems for shopping carts.

e-Bullion.com has about 250,000 accounts, some $12 million in
They offer gold, silver, and "e-currency" which is a dollar transfer
service.  Their Cryptocard security is top-notch.  They recently moved
their servers to Switzerland, a respected financial privacy haven.  A
good quality automation system is available for shopping cart

GoldMoney.com has a bit more gold in circulation than e-gold, but only
about 15,000 accounts.  Corporate governance is excellent and the system
is audited.  Their servers are on the Channel Isle of Jersey, a worthy
financial privacy haven.  A truly outstanding automation interface.

Pecunix.com is much smaller in terms of circulation and users, but has
excellent security features and will encrypt all communications to your
PGP key if you wish.  Servers on New Zealand.

LibertyDollar.org offers gold and silver specie, paper and digital
warehouse certificates.  We aren't deeply enthusiastic about their
automation interface.  Servers in Indiana and metal stored in Idaho,
so a bit domestic.

Evocash.com offers an online payment system comparable to PayPal in
that it is a dollar transfer service.  Probably several million
Circulation figures are unpublished.  Servers are probably in Spain.

A lot of people seem to like MoneyBookers.com.  Online casinos seem
to like Neteller.  Overseas, we've seen a lot of interest in former
Soviet countries in WebMoney.  There's also quite a bit of activity
in interchange, such as cyfrocash, myicis.com, cambist.net, and
open2exchange.com which offer various online exchanges.

The short of it is that there are many online payment services to choose
from.  It simply isn't the case "that PayPal is a de facto monopoly
for internet payments."  Rather, PayPal seems to be a widely used
system that has a lot of problems.  It may have the most market share,
but it also has the most trenchant critics and a great many fundamental
deficits.  But, at least founder Elon Musk is interested in space
launch services with his SpaceX.com company.  Maybe he can do unto
NASA as his PayPal system has done unto so many merchants and consumers.
No one would more richly deserve a lot of difficulty than NASA.


"NASA delenda est" http://houstonspacesociety.org/

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