We’re Missing an Entire Universe of Web Payments: How to Fix the Web for Creators

Amber Case
11 min readAug 7, 2020
Fixing the web involves taking care of Creators.

Creators have three options for surviving online: closed marketplaces, recurring subscriptions and invasive advertising. It’s time for something new.

You’re in an arcade.

This arcade has a million machines.

Instead of coin slots, the games have different payment methods. Some are ad-supported, frequently pestering you with annoying pop-ups. Others won’t let you play until you enter your credit card. Some require a monthly subscription, and the rest have an up-front cost that is too much for casual use.

Some people will pick a few machines they like, and most will give up. Why can’t you just pay a quarter for a quick match against a friend? Why do you need to buy a game for a whole month, remember to cancel the subscription before it gets automatically renewed, and then go through the same process with another game?

This is the state of online transactions.

A lot of people are leaving the arcade.

There are other ways to do web payments.

We know that modern web experience is mostly terrible. Instead of individual creator sites, most…

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Amber Case

Design advocate, speaker and author of Calm Technology. Former Research Fellow at MIT Media Lab and Harvard BKC.