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Website DIY #13: Payments

Some things we learned about paying people, cross-border: it's really annoying!

We have been using Outvoice to pay contributors, since we knew the founders. (Matt at Hard Times is a co-founder and connected us to the Coil project and, transitively, our grant funding.) It’s gone well so far.

There are pain points that seem to be systemic pain points:

We got our GftW money in USD. Obviously we’re in Canada. So Sam set up a USD account with TD Canada Trust just to manage this money and not transfer the money back and forth, etc. In the end, though, Outvoice was unable to connect to our USD account to pay people directly, so we had to find a workaround. (People get paid from my corporate Visa and I reimburse myself… not great.)

Apparently, this is a nature-of-the-beast problem. Getting money, even USD, across the border is, apparently, a real pain in the ass to do.

(We had tried PayPal and their support is the absolute worst! Indescribably bad and useless. Just staggering. I mean, who woulda thought a company with Peter Thiel and Elon Musk among its founders would be a vapourware gong show of uselessness, false promises, and garbage support? And then there’s Transferwise, which John O’Nolan of Ghost says is plagued by the same garbage.)

So… have access to bank accounts in all countries you’re paying people? I don’t know. Anyway, Outvoice has let us pay people and that’s the most important thing, though I think we’ve lost hundreds in the exchanging and it’s a drag in general. Not sure what the alternative is though. Other than maybe find a US partner next time to hold our money in their account.

More in the series

  1. Website DIY #1: Intro & Domain
  2. Website DIY #2: On Starting A ‘Magazine’
  3. Website DIY #3: Site Setup
  4. Website DIY #4: Monetization (Quick Overview)
  5. Website DIY #5: Newsletters
  6. Website DIY #6: Social Media
  7. Website DIY #7: Pitches/Submissions
  8. Website DIY #8: Analytics/Traffic
  9. Website DIY #9: Accessibility
  10. Website DIY #10: Podcasting
  11. Website DIY #11: Equity
  12. Website DIY #12: Email & Responding To Pitches
  13. Website DIY #13: Payments
  14. Website DIY #14: Admin Tools/Apps
  15. Website DIY #15: Networking
  16. Website DIY #16: Audience
  17. Website DIY #17: Stock Assets (Photos/Illustrations)
  18. Website DIY #18: Finances (How To Lose Money!)
  19. Website DIY #19: Wrap Up: Wins & Losses
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