A user who was upset about the ongoing fires in the Amazon tried to donate $100,000 in Bitcoin (BTC) to the environmental group Amazon Watch. However, BitPay rejected the generous donation due to it being ‘too large.’
One kind user has had their BTC donation rejected due to BitPay’s own ‘approved volume limitations.’ Environmental group Amazon Watch, the intended recipient of the funds, said that the amount was rejected for being ‘too high.’
@BitPay @BitPaySupport a donor, no doubt upset about horrific #AmazonFires tried to donate $100,000 to our account today and it was rejected as too high. We want to reach out to this person to resolve this issue, but have no way to do so. We need your help, ASAP. Thank you.
— Amazon Watch (@amazonwatch) August 23, 2019
BitPay has responded to the problem and told the activist group that they needed to readjust the setting in the merchant dashboard. Once doing so, they would have to wait for the new volume to be approved. The bureaucratic-like process angered some people online, who felt that it was the antithesis of what Bitcoin was all about.
One Twitter user (@alex_kaul) suggested that Amazon Watch switches to BTC Pay Server, an open-source alternative which does not take a percentage cut of funds being sent nor places restrictions on transactions.
Why BitPay for Bitcoin donations? If you respect your donors, then switch to @BtcpayServer.
— Alex Kaul (@alex_kaul) August 23, 2019
However, it can be even easier. As another user (@infeza) mentions, all Amazon Watch needs to do is create a Bitcoin address and make it public. This way, anyone can send as much as they please. The environmental group would then just verify the transactions themselves for free — what Bitcoin is all about.
Regardless, the entire situation underscores an important rule: if you don’t own the keys, you don’t own the funds. BitPay is intended to make the transactional process easier for merchants. However, let’s not forget that it is essentially a centralized entity. Apart from charging fees, it can also easily place restrictions on how much BTC is sent and where it’s allowed to go.
One user, moved by the ongoing fires in the Amazon, decided to donate $100,000 in BTC on a whim. The fact that this needed to be ‘approved’ should be a clear sign that Bitcoin needs to stay decentralized.
For grassroots organizations like Amazon Watch, it might be more worthwhile to simply create its own BTC wallet and accepted the donations directly. Hopefully, it can reconnect with the generous doner and have them resend the funds.
Do you agree that BitPay is too limiting and has no business in limiting transactions? Let us know your thoughts below in the comments.