October 8, 2010 4:45 PM   Subscribe

We've just launched the public beta version of a new rewarding service called YouTipIt. With YouTipIt you can reward others monetarily for their online work. We are completly independent, the only corporate link is PayPal, which handles the payment services for us. I'm posting this here for two reasons: A) I'd appreaciate any feedback whatsoever. We've been working on this for months, and I'm sure many of you out there can give us a fresh perspective on things. B) We are looking content creators of any kind, willing to try it out and add a Junket to their site. If you are content creator (we call them buskers) and you are not able to work our site, please drop us a line, and help us find out where we might be failing.
posted by AyKarsi (11 comments total)

OK honestly this is a nice idea and I'm sure the functional implementation is nice but the website is awful. I do not want to have to watch a video to find out what it is you want me to do. You really need to spend some time focusing on UI and your communication there.

Also, while "busker" is a fine term, "Junket" is not meaningful - why not use the vastly more transparent term "tip jar"?
posted by DarlingBri at 1:50 AM on October 9, 2010

thanks for the open feedback! You say that the website is awful. That hurts :) No honestly, I really appreciate it. When you say awful, are you also refering to the colors and layout?

The video was actually just planed as helper for those, who are too lazy too read, and should only suplement the about text. You really have a strong point there, that we should communicate the core of the service on the start page in text, instead of the video..

We actually had been considering the term tip jar in an early phase, but thought that a word creation would suit our needs. We will definetly consider renaming it.

thanks again!
posted by AyKarsi at 5:56 AM on October 9, 2010

I don't mind the colours - but the typography needs some work. Also it's inconsistent to underline the 2nd level of navigation, when the first is not underlined.

The main content area wold benefit from some more padding.

On the top page on the right side the thumbnails would look better in a uniform size.

I think the design issues are important because of your likely competition and because as soon as you have anything dealing with money it helps your cause to look a certain level of slick, which the site isn't quite up to yet.
posted by gomichild at 11:47 AM on October 9, 2010

AyKarsi: "thanks for the open feedback! You say that the website is awful. That hurts :) No honestly, I really appreciate it. When you say awful, are you also refering to the colors and layout? "

Yes. Please note that you have under 10 seconds to communicate with a visitor before they lose interest or move on. In that time frame, you need to appear professional, communicate your proposition clearly, and show your product. The formula for doing this is very well established; following it is not complicated. is a fine example of a site where the design may not be award winning but the positioning and communication is clear and effective. I can come up with 30 other examples if it would be helpful, but you don't need them - you browse and buy into these services every day.

While I understand that designing a site that will serve your app well can be daunting, don't re-invent the wheel - look at the rides you take all the time and how they work.

Also, I'm sorry but your logo is pants. I'm fine with "font as logo" but we're talking about MONEY here - you need to be credible. Grafitti does not communicate that core value.
posted by DarlingBri at 1:37 PM on October 9, 2010

To be honest, it's hard to see this going any other way than Tipjoy did.

You'll have a big chicken-and-egg problem in gaining any traction because it's not compelling for sites to sign up for this unless there are lots of potential tippers using it, and not much point for would be tippers to sign up when there are few sites using it.

On top of that, there is no culture of tipping for content online anyway, and places that have experimented with such things don't see a lot of tipping happening. The way most people express appreciation of good content is through commenting, liking (a la Facebook and Tumblr), and sharing links.

You'll need to find a way to solve those problems if you're going to get anywhere. Maybe find something that can be for you what ebay was for Paypal.

The words "busker" and "junket" also don't work for me. "Busker" has mixed connotations at best... maybe you come across a better class of busker than I do. And "junket" is not a made up word as you seem to think, but an existing word that has a meaning which doesn't fit, and has negative associations anyway.

For that matter where I come from "tipster" means someone that gives betting or stock tips, not someone that gives money.

I wish you well with the project, but I believe you'll need to do some serious thinking if this is ever going to fly.
posted by philipy at 5:54 PM on October 9, 2010

You might benefit from spending a few collaborative hours here if you want to look at the issues philipy is pointing out.
posted by DarlingBri at 7:41 PM on October 9, 2010

I'm not signing up for something so that I can give someone a tip. Likewise, I'm not asking someone else to sign up for something so they can leave me a tip.

Also, I'm in the US. If you want users over here at all you're going to have to give us numbers in USD. It seems a bit weird that you're talking about cents and not using USD.

As a side note, I'm assuming that you mean Euro Cents. Most other people over here won't assume that. They'll see cents, prices in Euros, and assume it's not for them.
posted by theichibun at 11:01 AM on October 11, 2010

I agree with pretty much everything above, especially philipy and DarlingBri.

I would not have made it through the FAQ page if I didn't have it in mind that I wanted to come back here and be helpful. I need something that grabs me faster and explains to me more clearly why I am going to invest the time in this - it looks cumbersome to me, just reading it felt like work.

The logo doesn't connect me to the product, and the terminology is off to me somehow, like it doesn't connect.

So I can only log in by sharing my account info from another login? I like that that is easy, which is a plus, but when you are dealing with money it needs to be stepped up a notch, and I don't have the level of trust yet where I'm presumably going to give you my Twitter info to log in.

I like the idea, keep working on it!
posted by mrs. taters at 9:39 AM on October 12, 2010

Honestly I think the only people on the web that could possibly solve the micropayment problem are Facebook. Many many people have tried what you're trying in one form or another.

But good luck. I'd love to be wrong. Content creators need money.
posted by keratacon at 6:37 PM on October 14, 2010

I like the concept, but it needs work.
1) Why would I use this instead of Paypalling a creator directly by way of a donate button? I'm not sure if there're extra fees in Europe and that's where your numbers are coming from or what. I don't use Paypal all that much, but I know that to send and receive money, assuming it's coming from a bank account or a Paypal account, is free in the U.S. If you're a business, they have a micropayment rate for businesses accepting under $12 per transaction that is cheaper than your rates, if I'm understanding their site correctly, which would apply to credit cards, too. Why would a creator or a tipper want to pay unnecessary fees? This is a real question, because either I'm misunderstanding Paypal's site or your site for your whole fee schedule to even make sense. If it really does make sense, make that fairly prominent in your "About" or "FAQs," perhaps with some comparison numbers.

2) The site needs to be proofread. There is an instance of who's/whose on the main index page. I didn't go looking for errors, but if there's an error on the first page, it probably needs to be looked over.

3) The term junket is very strange to use there, as I can't make any common usage of the term apply. The term busker is also a lot more derogatory in my area than I think you meant.

4) This is a minor detail, but if you're going to advertise to both European and American audiences, write out the numbers and fees both ways.
posted by wending my way at 4:54 PM on October 25, 2010

I don't have much to add to the above suggestions, but I do think you should take a look at Flattr if you haven't already. If nothing else, they've already faced the issues you are facing now. Whether they'll ever really take off is debatable but they seem to be doing ok for now.
posted by blue funk at 4:55 AM on November 5, 2010

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