Donations, Stripe, and other things

As some of you already know, PayPal suddenly and unceremoniously decided to end a very friendly working relationship with us that lasted 14 years (and included the occasional personal christmas card.) We have asked repeatedly for an explanation of this behavior, but have been stonewalled at every turn, and have received only form emails telling us that we needed to be “pre-approved” for an account. When we asked what we need to do to be pre-approved, they emailed back and said that they are “not granting pre-approval at this time”.

So friends, it appears as though our relationship with PayPal is over, just like that. Since we still rely on user support to keep Soulseek up and running, we have turned to Stripe as our new payment system. Stripe is a San Francisco-based payment system that has been around for 7 years, and is used by companies like: Kickstarter, Pinterest, Instagram, fitbit, Indiegogo, Twitter, Instacart, Ted Talks, Lyft, TaskRabbit, PostMates, The Guardian, Wired Magazine... just to name a handful.

Despite the fact that Stripe is every bit as reliable and trustworthy as PayPal, it is clearly not as well-known, and a number of our users have contacted us saying that they are not comfortable with it as an alternative.
As a result, we are looking to integrate any other payment solution that you, our users, feel more comfortable using. And so we want to hear from you! Is there a service that you would like to see integrated? Is there something that we can do to make the decision to donate easier for you?

Please let us know!

Thanks, Roz and Nir Arbel


psynaturecybine's picture

Is there any reason why we can't use regular bank payments?

Hi there, we are not exactly sure what you mean by "regular bank payments" can you explain?

psynaturecybine's picture

bank transfer like swift

As far as I understand it, SWIFT is used for bank-to-bank transfers, and for large amounts of money. Handling users' personal banking information is something that we are not entirely comfortable with. If you think that there is a way to transfer donations using SWIFT that is excludes us from handling the donation directly, please let us know!

You can always use bitcoin as a payment system......

Stripe actually takes Bitcoin!

psynaturecybine's picture

PayPal sucks. I hope you guys did not have much money on the account...

They actually did not seize the assets in the account, they just will not allow us to accept donations using their system.

Maybe you could create some sort of a dummy app in AppStore for iOS that would count as a donation? Doesn't have to do anything other than some silly stuff that would actually count as a donation. Just display a SoulSeek logo or something and "Change colour to red and get 30 day privileges for $5" or something, etc. Or maybe you could use one of the donation systems (rather than a money transfer company). I wouldn't really be too comfortable with any of those alternatives either (PayPal sucks as it's really ruthless, but it is an established brand and I believe they're quite secure - and won't disappear any minute with my Credit Card details), and unfortunately I couldn't do a direct card payment as the commission is too high (international transfers etc.). Isn't there any way you could register with PayPal again with a different name, e-mail etc., just claiming you're something else entirely so they won't catch wind of that?

We are not really in the habit of trying to deceive, so trying to "sneak into" a PayPal account is really not an option for us.

I have some experience using swift since I have a few friends into bitcoin and other techie stuff, I have to say, no matter how trustworthy they seem it is always good to have a second bitcoin wallet, e.g electrum client, for backup just in case swift needs to go down or halt bitcoin payments as they bitcoin network is supposed to be going through a 'stress test' at the moment. As such, having another wallet address for donations would be good to stay on the safe side. Also the electrum wallet doesn't need to sync the whole blockchain.

We are currently exploring other additional options, but it is a complicated process, so stay tuned for future developments!

I just (to test the water) made a 'Stripe' payment to Soulseek, and I do not like the fact that you cannot create an account to hold the bank details. That strips off the transparency that makes PayPal so good.

Do you mean that you want to "create an account to hold the bank details" because it is more convenient for you? We were thinking that Stripe is easier to use because it does not force the user to create an account.
We are wonder what you mean by "transparency"?

Not having to enter debit card details for each transaction. That's where PayPal scores high.

Perhaps transparent is the wrong word. I was trying to get at the point that you just tell it to send the money and it does. Having a secure place to have the details stored.

Stripe does offer a "remember me" option. Would that address it?

I've tried to donate but i'm receiving the message 'card denied', and my card is ok. what's happening?

We're not sure. Every once in a while Stripe seems to reject credit cards that are otherwise perfectly fine. We added a billing address step to Stripe payments in the hope that that would fix it, but it doesn't seem to have eliminated the problem... sorry for the inconvenience. Thank you for trying to support us!

Since my Message Board post seems to remain unanswered - is there any donation method established so far? How can I donate, as I want to do my monthly payment but seemingly can't - the SoulSeek website still has the PayPal button so I'm completely lost.


Sorry, been a busy few days. Stripe is the way to go for now. We need to fix the Donate page linked to from the sidebar, it's only intended to be used if you can't donate through the client. Clicking the 'Support Soulseek' button in SoulseekQt will take you to the right page.

Made a donation using Stripe - had no issues and seemed really easy. I do prefer the fact that they don't have my card details stored. Good choice!


roomx's picture

Yep. Stripe works fine

Wow, this Stripe thing .
Well i am usually very well about those things , but i didn't understand any shit about how this Stripe thing works . So unfortunately i cannot continue with my donation .
What is the easiest way to pay i don't get it. it asks me many crazy things to be registered and i have no idea how this coin way of payment works to be honest .

Too bad.I'm not really comfortable with the address thing or entering my cc info to what seems to be a stratup I've never heard of..

Stripe's been around since 2011:

Stripe Wikipedia page

And provide payment processing for many known companies:

But if you're still worried about giving them your credit card information, they offer a bitcoin option which we use in the donation form (second tab on the top.)

If PayPal isn't accepting donations for you any more then it might be a good idea to remove the donate form on this web site (not in the client software), as it appears to still be sending people to Paypal today, 21 November? Or make it point to Stripe instead?

I've still got 311 days to go before my next donation comes up, but I've come across a service that's used by some German and Dutch usenet services called - it's fairly steep to pay money into using cards, but it's more or less free if you pay into it by bank transfer, it's free from Ireland anyhow. I've had no problems with it so far and I've used it for about a year now, so maybe it might be worth investigating as a fall-back? Their HQ is in the Isle of Man, which is a tax-haven related to the UK, but I don't think that it's part of the UK, or even a member of the EU.

There's another UK-based service called, though when I put it into my browser it now appears to be called, that's used by many online betting sites, but also by the likes of Skype, but my advice would be to stay away, based on my past experience with them as

The donate web page should be fixed now, sorry it took so long. Thanks for the warning about Moneybookers/Skrill, we actually tried them a little while ago and it didn't work out. We'll take a look at Neteller.

Thanks, Nir

I tried to donate 3 times now and each time, after I've input my details, it goes right back to the donate page without putting the payment through.

No notification (email or on-screen) as to what's gone wrong or if payment was successful. Nothing! Is this system working okay for some coutries only? I'm based in Europe. (!!??)


I had the same looping problem. It was invoking Internet Explorer so I copied the URL address into Firefox and it worked. Apparently Google Chrome works too!

Why can't I download your app? I did with windows 8, I upgraded to windows 10 and can't download your program into my programs ? Please help, I miss the music ! Please help!

Works on Windows 10 - I've been running it for quite a while. 2015.8.3 client....

Donations via Stripe didn't work for me at first as the Soulseek client was opening the the payment page in the Internet Explorer browser.

So instead I opened it in Chrome and the correct Info page popup showed up. Payment went through correctly this time.

There is also this:

But I know nothing about it unfortunately. I think they are trying to compete with PayPal.

google pay or google checkout won't work....? ;)

If the explanation is true then WOW, PayPal really is a brutal company. That is awful - 14 years and not a single ounce of respect.

How about paysafecard .. i use it all the time for my premium downloading accounts.

Stripe doesn't work for me either.
1. I press the 'Donate' button on the first screen.
2. Takes me to the 'Enter Details' screen
3. I enter my details and press 'Donate'
4. It goes back to 1. with a message about cancel or retry. Says don't use retry if you've already entered details.
5. Retry doesn't work, Cancel drops you out.


We could buy you Amazon gift card (-:

Not a fan of CC info on Stripe. I like the bank debit idea. Miss my premium donation account.

i want to add you to my flattr donation list. Is that possible ?

Flattr looks very interesting, I'll look into it.

Man I miss the premium account. Donating no issue for me just not a fan of the Swift CC action. Bank account debit(PayPal) was my comfort zone.

Stripe are 100% trustworthy but be prepared for your account to go the same way as the Paypal one.. from personal experience they have a similar stance on 'grey area' payments. Bitcoin is your best option IMHO. :)

maybe Stripe is trustworthy... I'm using Paypal since 13 years and I used to do my slsk-donations via Paypal since 13 years.
I read about the problems and I read that EEF helped to solve those problems with Paypal.
Today I tried to give another donation to slsk via Paypal and evgerything seemed to work fine, but I'm registered to Paypal with a Mastercard...and trying to give a donation to slsk, my Mastercard isn't accepted. And that's strange. It seems that Slsk never had a problem with Paypal, but rather with Mastercard!!..
I'm very busy with paying via Paypal (with attached Mastercard-acount) and usually having no problems at all....
I'd like to support Slsk in the future, but as safety of payment-data is crucial, I'm not willing to try new services like "stripe".
Does anybody have an explanation, why Paypal doesn't accept Mastercard for donating to Slsk????