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Author Topic: Accepting Bitcoins as a freelancer - advice?  (Read 692 times)
kazarak
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September 13, 2011, 04:24:16 PM
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I recently started accepting bitcoins as a freelance writer via my website (www.kstanki.com). I haven't implemented any sort of automated system, I simply discuss price with my clients via email and if they choose to pay with Bitcoin I throw them an address. It's simple and it works, but I feel like it's needlessly clunky with all of the various merchant tools out there. My question is- are there any software/services/tips that can streamline this process for me? I would love to use something like http://www.bitcoinpayflow.com/ but I have no idea how to implement that code. 
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FormerlyAnonymous
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September 13, 2011, 05:14:55 PM
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Unfortunately, my impression is that until recently, the standard answer to this question has pretty much been to accept MyBitcoin.

Surely there are some other options I'm not aware of but for the most part I think you are bumping up against an early-adopter problem here -- so far, to my knowledge, there is no slam-dunk solution to this problem that doesn't involve writing code.

What's worse is that writing you own web-server script code to do something fancy like accept bitcoins into a dynamically generated payment address with a note explaining the reason, is potentially dangerous and requires careful consideration of where you put certain security boundaries and firewalls (in the loose, metaphorical sense of the term), what flows of information could be exploited by attackers and so forth.

However, it is OK (meaning, safe) to simply publish a bitcoin payment address on your site.  You could also use an URL shortening service (like the one in my .sig) to make it more memorable.  The payments will come in unlabeled and into a big pile which is unfortunate.  But if you are looking for a very safe and very simple solution, unfortunately AFAIK this is the state of the art.

payb.tc/formerlyanonymous
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September 13, 2011, 06:32:36 PM
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my 2 cents: generate yourself a list of addresses so that you can use whenever you need to accept a payment from client.
you keep the private keys and can spend the coins as you wish. least effort (virtually zero coding) could be that list in a include file with all addresses but one commented out. when you get a payment, just comment the used one and uncomment the next one. you will have no notifications (like a 3rd party wallet service might offer) but it's your wallet so as long you run your client, you'll see incoming transactions anyway.

You can't build a reputation on what you are going to do.
nmat
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September 13, 2011, 06:49:20 PM
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I think bit-pay has some off the shelf solutions (sort of like paypal). Maybe you should contact them.
kazarak
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September 13, 2011, 07:07:32 PM
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Thanks for the input guys, your ideas got me thinking-

Here's how I plan to condense the entire process a bit:

First, I'll generate myself a big list of receiving addresses.

Next, I'll throw up a form for the client to fill out with required information, and when they submit that they will be given one of the random addresses to send payment to.

In a nutshell: I'll have them submit their own bitcoin address, the price agreed upon, and the email address they used to talk to me (the nature of my business requires that I communicate with each client) and my site will spit back one of my receiving addresses at random and instruct them to send payment to it. All of this information will be sent to an email address of mine for accounting purposes (orders at mysite.com, something like that) and I'll keep records that way.

This seems pretty solid to me, at least it's better than doing it all manually. The only real obstacle is getting Gravity Forms (a WP plugin for form creation) to do what I want, I'll spend some time with it.

Thanks guys.
nmat
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September 13, 2011, 07:41:03 PM
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Why would they submit their own bitcoin address?
kazarak
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September 13, 2011, 07:51:00 PM
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Why would they submit their own bitcoin address?

So that I can connect the email address and their bitcoin address to the transaction, verifying that they paid? Or am I missing something?

Still pretty new to BTC, forgive my ignorance when it comes to subtleties like this.
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September 13, 2011, 07:53:28 PM
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When you pay with bitcoins, the address your payment comes from is not the same address you use to receive. You should not identify transactions based on this.

Just give a different address to each person. When you receive the money on that address, you can connect it with the email.
kazarak
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September 13, 2011, 07:58:34 PM
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When you pay with bitcoins, the address your payment comes from is not the same address you use to receive. You should not identify transactions based on this.

Just give a different address to each person. When you receive the money on that address, you can connect it with the email.

This makes sense, I'll just have them input their email (Maybe I'll also do an Order # system for accounting purposes and have them input that as well) and give them a bitcoin address to send to. I wasn't really thinking clearly about the purpose of using a different address for each transaction... must be my Polish genes.
FormerlyAnonymous
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October 08, 2011, 03:58:58 PM
 #10

Why would they submit their own bitcoin address?

Good point, I think this is mass-protocol-dyslexia triggered by my original reply....

Unless you have some sort of outgoing-payments system where recipients get an e-mail like:

Code:
"
Subject: You've got coin!

OP owes you Bitcoin and wants to pay up.  Just Click
<a href=blah.blah/blah.php?auth=huge_crypto_number>this</a>
link to start the process.

In which case I guess you really do need their address (triple checked to make sure I didn't get it backwards yet again, which would be pretty typical of me -- typically I always guess the wrong Boolean outcome no matter how many times I try to reverse my position until I draw some kind of ridiculously trivial Visio diagram Grin)

payb.tc/formerlyanonymous
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