Bitcoin, the favorite digital currency of those over-concerned with privacy, is making a strong debut as the favorite means of payment for extra services with WordPress.
Automattic, the company that backs WordPress, will allow users who want a bite of the premium features (such as custom skinning support) to pay for it with the untraceable currency known as Bitcoin, according to the news broken by Andy Skelton.
The inclusion of Bitcoin as official payment has nothing to do with privacy or anonymity, as some conspiracy theorists could imagine, but rather comes to complement other payment systems that may not work for residents of specific countries.
â€œPayPal alone blocks access from over 60 countries and many credit card companies have similar restrictions. Some are blocked for political reasons, some because of higher fraud rates, and some for other financial reasons,â€ said Skelton. Â â€œWhatever the reason, we donâ€™t think an individual blogger from Haiti, Ethiopia, or Kenya should have diminished access to the blogosphere because of payment issues they canâ€™t control.â€
However, the announcement has deeper implications than simply expanding payment options for some regions. Bitcoins have been around for quite a while, but they did not get the necessary traction to penetrate the underground and become something even close to a payment option of choice. This happens mostly because governments discourage the use of Bitcoins, as theyâ€™re the exact opposite of real-life currency: untraceable, prevents over-spending and is totally decentralized.
The introduction of Bitcoin as a favorite payment mechanism by one of the most prominent software giants on the Internet might prompt other businesses to consider the same move and increase the visibility of a great currency thatâ€™s still lurking in the dark.