In 2014 it was possible to pay with Bitcoin for a few cents per transaction. At the time many projects popped up online and so did the original version of satoshis.place. Originally inspired by the 2005 million dollar homepage satoshis.place was promoted as a free advertising platform that allowed users to claim some space on a webpage for a custom advertisement. Paid on a per pixel basis, with bitcoins.
That the website was years ahead of its time became clear when reddit launched reddit place about a year ago. It was a similar concept that allowed users of the discussion platform to paint pixels on a canvas for 72 hours. The page resulted in a widely reported war of different groups of people accross the globe, all defending ‘their place’ on the canvas while others continuously tried to paint over their message, art or digital graffiti.
Reddit place quickly became one of the most interesting social experiments
As Bitcoin became more popular in the recent years the price per transaction rose accordingly, making micro payments no longer cost efficient. To solve this scalability issue a group of developers, led by Elizabeth Stark, created a scaling technology on top of Bitcoin called the Lightning Network. After years of development and testing the technology is getting used more and more in real-life situations and an early and fun example is satoshis.place.
Within seconds I was able to write something on the canvas and pay for it
As I have a full node that runs Lightning Network at home I could not resist the temptation and use the website to place a small ad. Within seconds I was able to write something on the canvas and pay for it to make it stick. For 106 satoshi’s, or approximately 0.007 USD, I temporarily was the proud owner of an extremely cheap online advertisement campaign. That’s right. A fun advertisement for less than a dollarcent, including transaction fees.
Can you find my ad?
Bitcoin is slowly maturing as it becomes possible to handle millions of transactions per minute while transactions fees stay extremely low. It is becoming possible to use the technology on a much, much larger scale and allow new types of usage, such as micro payments or real-time streaming money. A new period is inescapably forthcoming with many new and fresh use-cases that will spark disintermediation and disruption worldwide.
Recently a similar advertisement project already started in the real world. Near London, in the city center of Kingston, a large advertisement screen allows advertisers to place their promotional material while accepting bitcoins as a payment method. The future is now.
Also published on Medium.