Advertisement
Engadget
Why you can trust us

Engadget has been testing and reviewing consumer tech since 2004. Our stories may include affiliate links; if you buy something through a link, we may earn a commission. Read more about how we evaluate products.

Square accepts your political donations with a tweet

You can now donate to a political candidate without leaving Twitter, thanks to a new venture between the social network and payment company Square. Once candidates have registered with Square, they just need to tweet a "$Cashtag," which will automatically add a "contribute" button to the tweet. When Twitter users click the button, they'll be able to choose an amount, add a debit card number, then send the donation or retweet the $Cashtag to followers. According to the WSJ, Republicans Ben Carson and Rand Paul have already agreed to sign up, as has Democrat Bernie Sanders.

Square introduced $Cashtags earlier this year as a simple way for folks to send money to each other using its Cash.me system. (PayPal recently revealed a "me too," system -- excuse the pun -- called "PayPal.me.") For its part, Twitter has been testing a way for folks in France to send money using tweets. Both companies profit from the donation scheme, as Square takes a 1.5 percent commission on donations, and Twitter charges a fee for promoted tweets. It's hard to blame them for wanting to cash in, though -- some pundits think candidates could spend as much as $5 billion on the 2016 presidential campaign.