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Re: Balanced - a system on which to build a marketplace

From: Kumar McMillan <kmcmillan@mozilla.com>
Date: Sat, 2 Mar 2013 16:38:32 -0600
Cc: "public-webpayments@w3.org" <public-webpayments@w3.org>
Message-Id: <02E4086B-46F3-4440-A553-5480E3E573B0@mozilla.com>
To: Manu Sporny <msporny@digitalbazaar.com>

On Mar 2, 2013, at 11:20 AM, Manu Sporny <msporny@digitalbazaar.com> wrote:

> On 02/14/2013 11:45 AM, Kumar McMillan wrote:
>> Not sure if this came up on the list already: 
>> https://www.balancedpayments.com/
> 
> I don't think it's hit the list yet, thanks for the link Kumar. :)
> 
> I had a chat with the Balanced guys a few weeks ago, they were really
> nice and friendly. I asked that they join this group if they'd like,
> don't know if that ever happened.
> 
> We found out about them through GitTip. GitTip uses Balanced to process
> payments and did a fantastic job helping Chad Whitacre out when he had
> fraudulent transactions on his service:
> 
> http://blog.gittip.com/post/35057426257/stolen-money-on-gittip-part-1
> 
> It's a really interesting fraud incident partly because it was
> documented and put up publicly. Many fraud incidents are never reported
> to the public, so that blog post provides really great insight into what
> happened. Kudos to Chad and Balanced for handling the incident so well.
> 
>> This isn't decentralized by any means but the concept is it enables 
>> you to build a marketplace where you sell goods on behalf of other 
>> merchants. This is an important use case in web payments because it 
>> provides an incentive to the marketplace by way of transaction fees.
> 
> Yep, totally agree, which is why this was one of the first use cases we
> focused on for PaySwarm (technically, it started back in 2006 as a part
> of the work on Bitmunk's legal peer-to-peer music resale feature):
> 
> http://payswarm.com/specs/ED/use-cases/2011-10-25/#independent-distribution-and-pricing
> 
> The PaySwarm marketplace solution is decentralized. Here's a rough
> outline of how it works. Let's assume that the marketplace is a Web App
> Store:
> 
> The software developer creates a PaySwarm Asset that describes the item
> that they're selling (name of the app, who created it, images,
> description, etc.). They add sale restrictions to the asset: the license
> the app is available under as well as required price (or required
> minimum and maximum price), the validity of the offer period, and the
> deposit location for the funds upon purchase of the Asset. The Asset is
> digitally signed and placed somewhere on the Web (or physical media).
> 
> The Web App Store retrieves the asset and creates a listing for the
> asset, ensuring to add the required payees for the asset and ensuring
> that the prices charged and licenses used with the asset follow the
> requirements outlined by the Asset owner. The Web App Store adds their
> fee to the Listing. The Listing is digitally signed and placed on the Web.
> 
> A customer then comes by and clicks the "Buy" button, a purchase request
> (containing the Asset and Listing) is sent to the customer's PaySwarm
> Authority. They are shown the purchase details and agree to buy the app.
> The digital receipt is sent back to the Web App store, which can then
> initiate the download and install of the app.
> 
> Note that close to 80% of this is currently implemented in the current
> release of PaySwarm. The only thing missing is the ability to create
> sale restrictions on the Asset and the checks for the PA to ensure that
> the sale restrictions are being honored.
> 
> Kumar, is this the sort of thing you were thinking about wrt.
> decentralized App Stores?

Yeah, pretty much. It seems like the owner of the asset should enter explicitly into a relationship with the App Store otherwise they may not be happy that all these third parties can add extra fees to their assets. I guess that's what you mean by creating sale restrictions?

Also, I think there will be legitimate cases where someone wants to sell something through a marketplace but doesn't know how and doesn't care. In the app store example, let's say a developer wants to sell an app through Web Store Foo but the developer doesn't want to do all the asset signing / crypto, etc. Balanced fills this need nicely: all you have to do is securely enter your bank account details, list your goods through the marketplace, and you get paid. It should be that easy. Maybe offering third party asset management tools is the way to solve this.

Kumar

> 
> -- manu
> 
> -- 
> Manu Sporny (skype: msporny, twitter: manusporny, G+: +Manu Sporny)
> Founder/CEO - Digital Bazaar, Inc.
> blog: Aaron Swartz, PaySwarm, and Academic Journals
> http://manu.sporny.org/2013/payswarm-journals/
Received on Saturday, 2 March 2013 22:39:01 UTC

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