The Human Rights Foundation has just announced that it will be accepting Bitcoin donations via BTC Pay Server. Unlike other payment processing services, BTC Pay Server is an entirely open source project than can’t censor transactions.
Previously, Bitcoin payment processing companies have been the subject of controversy. With a middleman facilitating transactions, using Bitcoin with such a service might forfeit both the peer-to-peer and censorship resistance of payments.
Human Rights Foundation Accepts Bitcoin with BTC Pay Server
A great project that helps with privacy + doesn’t collect your information. Special thanks to @artdesignbySF for his design work.
— Human Rights Foundation (@HRF) March 9, 2020
It’s not the first time the organisation has welcomed donations via cryptocurrency. A Wikipedia page, updated in November last year, detailing different charitable organisations accepting Bitcoin listed the Human Rights Foundation.
NewsBTC was unable to find any information about how the organisation accepted Bitcoin prior to today’s announcement. It’s not clear if Human Rights Foundation worked with a different payment processor or simply used the cryptocurrency with a standard wallet.
On the organisation’s new donations page, Human Rights Foundation states:
“We are happy to take your Bitcoin donation via BTC Pay Server, a self-hosted, open-source cryptocurrency payment processor. It’s secure, private, censorship-resistant and free.”
The Human Rights Foundation has previously celebrated Bitcoin as a potential tool in the fight for freedom. For example, the non-profit published guidelines to help journalists and activists use the cryptocurrency more privately.
The Problem with Other Crypto Payment Processors
A lot of different companies and charities claim to accept Bitcoin and other crypto assets these days. However, they do so using a payment processor.
The reason for this is that although a lot of companies would like to appear friendly to Bitcoin, they aren’t prepared to risk actually holding it. Payment processors appeared to make it easier for an individual company to look like they accept Bitcoin when in fact they receive fiat.
The payment processor receives payments in crypto, exchanges it to fiat, and pays the fiat currency to the company providing the goods or services being paid for. Serving as a middleman between the transaction, the payment processor can actually censor the payment on whatever grounds it deems fit.
It might sound like a theoretical “what if” and it would never happen. Yet, NewsBTC has previously reported on problems between the Hong Kong Free Press and the crypto payment processing service BitPay.
The journalist group actually ditched the latter following delays in payments. Given that censorship can and does happen when working with a payment processor, it’s encouraging to see Human Rights Foundation exploring ways of using cryptocurrency that preserves the potentially revolutionary qualities of Bitcoin. BTC Pay Server, being code, and not a company, does just that.
Featured Image from Shutterstock.