[Bitcoin-development] Floating fees and SPV clients

Mike Hearn mike at plan99.net
Tue Dec 3 13:20:36 UTC 2013


On Tue, Dec 3, 2013 at 12:57 PM, Taylor Gerring <taylor.gerring at gmail.com>wrote:

> Why should there be two classes of transactions? Where does paying a local
> business at a farmer’s stand lie in that realm? Transactions should work
> the same regardless of who is on the receiving end.
>

Lots and lots of people are psychologically trained to expect that they pay
the sticker price for things. Yes in recent times some places have started
to show additional fees for using credit cards, but only as a way to try
and push people onto cheaper forms of payment, not because customers love
surcharges. It's for that reason that many merchants don't do this, even
when they could - I pay for things with Maestro Debit all the time and I
don't think I've ever seen a surcharge. That system obviously has costs,
but they're included.

This is just a basic cultural thing - when I buy something from a shop, the
social expectation is that the seller should be grateful for receiving my
money. "The customer is always right". When I send money to a friend, the
social expectation is different. If my friend said, hey Mike, could you
send me that 10 bucks you owe me from last weekend and what he receives is
less than 10 bucks, he would probably feel annoyed - if I owe him 10 bucks
then I owe him 10 bucks and it's my job the cover the fees. That's why
PayPal makes sender pay fees in that case.

Maybe we need new terminology for this. *Interior fees* for included in the
price/receiver pays and *exterior fees* for excluded from the price/sender
pays?

Fees are only confusing because existing clients do a terrible job of
> presenting the information to the user. In Hive Wallet, I’m of the opinion
> that we should inform the user in an intuitive way to let them make an
> informed decision.
>

Have you thought through the UI for that in detail? How exactly are you
going to explain the fee structure? Let the user pick the number of blocks
they need to wait for? What's a block? Why should I care? Why shouldn't I
just set the slider all the way to the other end and pay no fees at all? Is
the merchant going to refuse to take my payment? Gavin just said that's not
possible with Bitcoin-Qt. I'm thinking for bitcoinj I might go in a
slightly different direction and not broadcast payments submitted via the
payment protocol (and definitely not have one wire tx pay multiple payment
requests simultaneously, at least not for consumer wallets).
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