When you want to transfer money over the internet, there’s usually one name that comes to mind: PayPal. With the company’s troubled past, stemming from seemingly unnecessary account freezes and cagey communication with its users, a lot of folks are seeking an alternative way to send money.
For instance, take Monday’s public kerfuffle between hobby humor site Regretsy and PayPal. After a wildly successful Christmas gift-exchange program for children, Regretsy found itself in a bit of a pickle with the global payment-processing company. PayPal had frozen the donation funds in Regretsy’s account and had requested all money be refunded.
This echoes similar events from PayPal’s past, including a Hurricane Katrina fundraiser on the website Something Awful, as well as donations made to document repository Cryptome.
PayPal responded to Wired.com’s inquiry about the situation with this comment:
For reference, we have clear guidelines for any business who uses PayPal to accept donations. For example, we require certain documentation to prevent misuse of the donated funds and, if the recipient claims charitable status, to determine whether they are properly registered. As a regulated payment service, we’re also required by law to follow these guidelines.
We appreciate that this can be an inconvenience, but we have a responsibility to all our customers -– both donors and recipients; or buyers and sellers. In this instance, we recognized our error and moved as swiftly as possible to fix it.
If this is true, good on PayPal for releasing the funds. But if you’re not convinced, there are other ways to transfer money during the holiday season and beyond. Read on for some great PayPal alternatives.