Facebook Wants Its Money

By Andrew Greiner
|  Wednesday, Jun 3, 2009  |  Updated 4:11 AM CDT
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Facebook Wants Its Money

Time to pay up Facebookers.

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As if “25 Random Things …” weren’t annoying enough, Facebook is experimenting with a way to get you to pay for its sometimes-infuriating digital goods.

 In the coming weeks Facebook will roll out a new internal payment system that aims to make it easier for third party developers to get at the social networking sites’ 300 million users’ money, according to the Financial Times.

“Over time, this will be very significant,” said Ray Valdes, an analyst with Gartner Research. “Social networking sites have suffered with monetizing [their services], but this leverages [the fact that] users are there on Facebook.”

Up until now third party applications hoping to collect a little scratch had to send their users elsewhere on the web for payment.  Now the payments will stay in-house

The payment system is currently being tested on three applications but it’s expected to be used on more apps this summer.

The good news for Facebook is that by offering an internal pay system, they’ll be able to take a cut of every transaction which could allow the social networking site to move away from an advertising based revenue model and into a commerce based one.

The bad news for users, next time someone forwards you a virtual cocktail or sends out a superpoke, the application may ask for your credit card information instead of a pledge to send it 20 friends.

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