Sunday, July 3, 2011

Donate to WikiLeaks with Bitcoins. Tell MasterCard, Visa, and PayPal to Screw Themselves.


Updates (Friday, July 8):

1.
Some people may not be comfortable with using MtGox to trade bitcoins. There are two other alternatives:
Both of these sites still allow transfers from Dwolla.


2.
As of Thursday, June 7, 2011 there is an opening to donate to WikiLeaks through credit card via DataCell. WikiLeaks announced this on their FaceBook Page and Twitter. It is unclear how long this option will stay open. Visa has already taken steps to shut this door, though there are reports that Visa continues to accept the transfers anyway. The announcement was made on DataCell's website here.

But even without Visa, DataCell is still accepting donations using MasterCard and American Express here. For how long? Who knows? There is a currency transfer from Euros, but the donations go through. MasterCard, as of this writing, has not responded. Note that MasterCard previously denied WikiLeaks transfers. American Express has never had the opportunity to reject WikiLeaks donations. It will be interesting to see how American Express responds.



WikiLeaks explains the banking blockaid and their legal action against it here.
Go here to try to donate via credit card to WikiLeaks. If that doesn't work, there's always bitcoin (see original article and instructions below).


Updates (Tuesday, October 25):


Another way to support Wikileaks is to use the website "Flattr." This site has you store funds there, and then use those stored funds to donate to charities or wherever makes a "Flattr" button available to click. Wikileaks, has such a button.

So, here's how you do it:

1. Go to Flattr and set up an account.
2. Add funds via however (accepts PayPal and credit card as well). You're limited to donate 50 Euros per month. That's more than $50 for our inflated US currency, but it automatically does the exchange rate.
3. Go to Wikileaks' donate page here: http://shop.wikileaks.org/donate
4. Click on the "Flattr" icon.
5. This pops out text that includes a green donate button. Click on that.
6. Enter the amount you want to donate. You may have to use a penny under the given range and use a comma rather than period to separate dollars from cents.

And that should do it.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I think we know why we're here.


 So what do  we do about these companies?

Screw MasterCard,Visa, and Paypal

Who would have guessed that a site dedicated to whistleblowing would piss off the largest corporations in the world? You? Well, okay. Good guessing.

So what do you do when these corporations control the way you donate money to Wikileaks? Apparently, you bypass these jackasses and use Bitcoin. WikiLeaks suggests it. You could also write a check and cross your fingers that it actually gets to WikiLeaks. Don’t want to write a check? Okay, keep reading for info on the bitcoin.

What’s a Bitcoin?


"What the fuck is a bitcoin," you ask? Well, after you calm down your language, I’ll tell you.
A bitcoin is a file that is recorded on a public ledger so that it is identifiable and not counterfeited. It has value because it is limited in supply; people perceive that it has value; and, importantly, people trade it for value. People also had to do work to get these coins. A person created a supply of bitcoins that he allowed to be “mined”. These coins are mined by average computer Joes that use mainly their graphics cards to solve complex problems. Over time, the problems they solve have steadily gotten harder. This helps with inflation and the predictability of bitcoin supply.

None of that makes sense? Okay, here’s a video:


What’s that? Bitcoins remind you of pogs, and you think they’ll crash? That actually doesn’t matter for your purposes. You just want to donate to WikiLeaks, right? Then you don’t need to hold on to your bitcoins. Just get them and donate them, so you don’t take on any real risk. If you want to keep some for later, then that’s up to you. WikiLeaks will thank you either way for the currency and continue doing their hard work.

How to Get Some Bitcoin to WikiLeaks.


Here’s how this is gonna happen:
  1. Set up Dwolla account and deposit funds. (there’s some waiting and confirmation stuff here)
  2. Set up MtGox account and transfer funds from Dwolla account. 
  3. Use MtGox account to buy some bitcoins.
  4. Transfer bitcoins from MtGox account to WikiLeaks, or transfer to online wallet and donate from there.
Off we go.

1.    1. Set up Dwolla account deposit funds. (US only; Otherwise, see next step)


Good job. Now sign up for an account. Don’t forget that you’re dealing with real money, so you’ll want to avoid that 12345 password. You’re going to need an account to transfer money from. It’ll ask you to confirm two deposits in your bank account as well as confirm your e-mail. You’re getting your routing and account number mixed up? Okay, here:

After you confirm the deposits, you’ll need to get money into your Dwolla account. There’s that transfer time . . . such a pain, I know. Just think of how much WikiLeaks has done for you. You can bookmark this page and continue when you get the confirmations. Also, you’ll need to transfer enough to purchase at least one bitcoin. The going rate can be found at: https://mtgox.com/, which hangs between 15-20 US dollars.

2.     2.   Set up MtGox account and transfer funds from Dwolla account.

You’ve hung in there. Good work. Go to the Bitcoin exchange market: https://mtgox.com/
Now set up an account with that clever alphanumeric password.
Click on “add funds”. It’s on the left side of the page. You have a bunch of options. If you’re from another country, use one of these:
  • Redeem MtGox code
  • Liberty Reserve
  • Cash or Check
  • Euro Bank Transfer (Europe)
  • Australian AUD Deposit (AU)
  • International USD Wire
You’re on your own there if you're not using a Dwolla account.

For those in the US that used the Dwolla account, click on that radio button and click the hyperlinked number following “account number”.

This takes you to your Dwolla Account.

You’ll see steps numbered in blue circles. The first text box will have your MtGox account number in it: MTGOX#12345X. The default is to send money from your Dwolla account to this account, so you’re good. Step 2 is to check how much you want to transfer. That’s your call. Go ahead and complete your transfer.

3.      3.  Use MtGox account to buy some bitcoins.

You’re ready to get some coins.  Click on “trade” in the left of the MtGox site. You’re asked for the number of bitcoins you want. You have to figure this out by looking at the going rate.
Look at what bitcoins are going for in the row showing the lowest asking price. Round up to the nearest cent. Divide the amount you want to spend by this going rate. That’s the amount you’re buying.

Now take the going rate number and put it in as your asking price. Note that your transaction wait will be shorter if you offer to pay a few cents higher than the lowest asking price. You can wait around if you want to save some pennies, or you can offer a few cents higher. You won’t necessarily pay the amount you offer. It’s just the max you’ll pay.

Click “Buy Bitcoins”.

You’ll see your dollar balance get lower and bitcoins get higher at the top right of your screen as the trades go through.

4.      4.  Transfer bitcoins from your MtGox account to WikiLeaks, or transfer to an online wallet and donate from there.

You’ve got your bitcoins. Kickass. Time to spend them. You can (A) make your transfer to WikiLeaks now, or (B) you can hold your money in an online wallet and transfer it from there.

A.
Click on “Withdraw Funds”. Click on the number of bitcoins you want to donate. The number must be one or greater. Keep that in mind to avoid stranding $10 or so left in the account. Now put in WikiLeaks’ bitcoin address in the box: 1HB5XMLmzFVj8ALj6mfBsbifRoD4miY36v. (Bitcoin address link goes to WikiLeaks’ page showing its number)

WikiLeaks says thanks.

If you click on account history, then you can see the withdraw transaction, though it doesn’t say the destination. 

B.
Okay, so you want to keep some leftover coin. The easiest option is to set up a virtual wallet. Go to https://www.mybitcoin.com/

Click on sign up, use your good password, and open your account. You have your own bitcoin address now to receive and transfer bitcoins.

Now go back to https://mtgox.com/. Click on “Withdraw Funds”. Click on the number of bitcoins you want to transfer to your online wallet. The number must be one or greater, and you might as well transfer it all if you’ve chosen this step. Now put in your bitcoin address from https://www.mybitcoin.com/ in the box. Transfer it on over.

Now you’re dealing with your coin at https://www.mybitcoin.com/. Click on “Send Payment”. Select however many bitcoins you want to give to WikiLeaks and insert their bitcoin address the box: 1HB5XMLmzFVj8ALj6mfBsbifRoD4miY36v. (Bitcoin address link goes to WikiLeaks’ page showing its number)

WikiLeaks says thanks. You can click on “view history” to see the exchange.

Way to be persistent! You must really like WikiLeaks. Good for you. And if you're wondering how else you can store/spend any leftover bitcoin, you may start your search here: http://www.weusecoins.com/getting-started.php.


Updates (Friday, July 8):

1.
Some people may not be comfortable with using MtGox to trade bitcoins. There are two other alternatives:
Both of these sites still allow transfers from Dwolla.

2.
As of Thursday, June 7, 2011 there is an opening to donate to WikiLeaks through credit card via DataCell. It is unclear how long this opening will stay open. Visa has already taken steps to shut this door. The announcement was made on DataCell's website here.

But even without Visa, DataCell is still accepting donations using MasterCard and American Express here. There is a currency transfer from Euros, but the donations go through. MasterCard, as of this writing, has not responded. Note that MasterCard previously denied WikiLeaks transfers. American Express has never had the opportunity to reject WikiLeaks donations. It will be interesting to see how American Express responds.

WikiLeaks explains the banking blockaid and their legal action against it here.

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