Flattr, a Swedish micropayments company, is discontinuing a Twitter-related payments service after apparently running afoul of Twitter's advertising rules.
"Recently Twitter contacted us and told us that we are violating their … terms," said Linus Olsson, a programmer who works for flattr, in a blog post.
It's the second time in the past week Twitter has stopped a payments service. On April 10, Twitter ordered Ribbon to stop in-stream payments on the social networking site. Ribbon is working with Twitter to restore the service, the company told PaymentsSource this week. Twitter did not return requests for comment on the Ribbon or flattr shutdowns, and flattr did not return requests for comment by deadline today.
Flattr acts as a form of a digital tip jar, allowing users to optionally give what it calls "microdonations" to people who create digital content. Flattr users fund their account with a fixed amount each month. During the month, users "flattr" creators by clicking a button next to the creator's content. The user's funds for that month are then divided among all of the creators selected.
Flattr's issues with Twitter began when the microblogging site contacted flattr and said the company is violating its rules governing advertising, which cannot resemble or be confused as a Tweet, flattr said. Twitter prohibits ads from having "tweet" actions, such as "follow," "retweet," "favorite" or "reply," flattr said.
Flattr suggested it forgo its 10% transaction fee, but "that did not help," Olsson said.
Flattr is available on sites such as Github, Vimeo, Soundcloud, Instagram, Flickr and YouTube. Users "Like" a creator on these sites to donate funds.