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PayPal Reinstates Fund For WikiLeaker Manning

Soulskill posted more than 3 years ago | from the saw-which-way-the-wind-was-blowing dept.

Censorship 92

itwbennett writes "PayPal has lifted a temporary restriction placed on the account of Courage to Resist, a group raising funds to support the legal defense of US Army Pfc. Bradley Manning, who was arrested for allegedly downloading classified information and providing it to WikiLeaks. As you may recall, PayPal was embroiled in controversy late last year when it shuttered an account for WikiLeaks amid the controversy over the expose of US State Department documents. PayPal communications director Anuj Nayar said in a blog posting that the decision 'had nothing to do with WikiLeaks.'"

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92 comments

Slashdot Wins! (3, Interesting)

Shikaku (1129753) | more than 3 years ago | (#35315682)

Crowdtality!

Re:Slashdot Wins! (5, Insightful)

Duradin (1261418) | more than 3 years ago | (#35315860)

Yes, they totally made that decision because a site full of people who hate their service and don't use them anyways (publicly) had their sensibilities hurt. That was just as successful as /.'s campaign to topple the lame Apple.

Tempest, meet Teacup. Teacup, Tempest. I think you two will get along famously. Oh, you met over Other OS? I'll leave you two to it then.

Re:Slashdot Wins! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35316930)

Fuck you. /discussion

Re:Slashdot Wins! (1)

datsa (1951424) | more than 3 years ago | (#35322128)

Maybe people who read this site have more influence than you think? I mean, who sets up Paypal on most websites? Computer people do. The kind of people who are more likely to read Slashdot. Maybe the next non-technical person will decide not to use Paypal on my recommendation, because I'm up on stories like this (99.9% of the country has no idea about Paypal v Bradley Manning - are you kidding me?) and I can warn them that Paypal might freeze their account if they don't like their business.

I cancelled my acct (1)

BitterAndDrunk (799378) | more than 3 years ago | (#35447962)

I was a pretty heavy eBayer/PayPal user until this occurred. I'd had reservations but let the convenience outweigh them until this incident.

Cancelled the account and let them know why in both the feedback form and the survey they sent out.

So basically, this is my doing. You're welcome, America.

Re:Slashdot Wins! (1)

Compaqt (1758360) | more than 3 years ago | (#35316032)

Yeah, well, we needed a win after the huge loss of Nokia to the dark side, which is still getting hundreds of comments per story within a short time after being posted.

Credibility anyone? (3, Insightful)

Killjoy_NL (719667) | more than 3 years ago | (#35315728)

[quote]PayPal communications director Anuj Nayar said in a blog posting that the decision 'had nothing to do with WikiLeaks.[/quote]

If anybody believes that, I have another bridge to sell them.

Re:Credibility anyone? (5, Funny)

olsmeister (1488789) | more than 3 years ago | (#35315748)

Do you accept Paypal?

Re:Credibility anyone? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35315776)

I give you mod points, you give me new keyboard and a new soda.

Re:Credibility anyone? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35329936)

No. I only accept Bitcoin.

Re:Credibility anyone? (3, Funny)

Kingrames (858416) | more than 3 years ago | (#35315786)

Someone should have stood behind him with a sign that said "[Citation Needed]".

Irony (1)

AliasMarlowe (1042386) | more than 3 years ago | (#35316122)

His credibility is outweighed by the irony of the blog's phrasing.
It referred to the "Courage to Resist PayPal" account!

Re:Credibility anyone? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35315814)

It could well be.
Paypal tends to analyse and shutter things on a regular basis when they gain huge amounts of money in certain ways.

If anyone remembers, another case of such a closure due to increased exposure was when popularity of the game Minecraft exploded.
They shuttered Notchs paypal account that contained 6 digit figures if i remember correct, simply because it rose up so sharply in such a small amount of time.

While i probably agree with you since i have extreme hatred for the service, it might honestly just be because of that.
It is a sad nuisance we have to live with since they people (the producers) keep using it instead of the various better systems out there.

Re:Credibility anyone? (2)

Galestar (1473827) | more than 3 years ago | (#35315882)

It is a sad nuisance we have to live with since they people (the producers) keep using it instead of the various better systems out there.

Please excuse my ignorance, could you point me in the direction of these better systems?
Main criteria (IMHO) is the ability to send payments without giving the seller your CC #

Re:Credibility anyone? (2)

tlhIngan (30335) | more than 3 years ago | (#35316260)

Main criteria (IMHO) is the ability to send payments without giving the seller your CC #

There's lots of systems for that - Google Checkout, Amazon Payments, etc. None of them expose your credit card number to the seller.

There aren't many systems for accepting credit cards on an ad-hoc basis. If you're a store, it's easy - get a merchant account, use Google Checkout or Amazon Payments.

If you're Joe Average, it's pretty much impossible to accept credit cards - the requirements for a merchant account can be excruiatingly high (minimum transactions a month, minimum amount charged a month, possible data security, etc).

eBay would be dead in the water without Paypal, which is why they bought it. Online auctions would be a PITA if the buyer had to go the post office, get a money order, send it off, wait a week for seller to receive it, wait another couple of weeks for it to clear, then wait another week for the item to arrive. What would take a week at most with a normal retailer takes a month though eBay. (An alternative would be to have eBay process the transactions for you but that would involve a ton of complications - something best left to entities like Paypal).

And for those saying CC are protected, yes, but how many CC processors get breached? Sure you're not responsible for the fraudulent purchase, but damn is it inconvenient to have to replace your card - reset all your payment methods with Amazon and other companies, any direct billing to credit cards have to be reset (nevermind if the billing date comes up just after the card gets cancelled), etc. Horrendous pain. And no, direct withdrawal from a bank account is not an option (and an even stupider idea).

Temporary credit card numbers are an option, if your bank provides it (a lot don't). And some idiotic merchants require a payment method before showing you a bloody subtotal.

Paypal is one of those necessary evils. They're not great, but damned if there's another way to take money by credit card. The ability to accept a random amount from a random person at a random time - it's the one big niche that neither Google nor Amazon seem to be trying to enter, for whatever reason.

Re:Credibility anyone? (1)

BitZtream (692029) | more than 3 years ago | (#35316534)

If you're Joe Average, it's pretty much impossible to accept credit cards - the requirements for a merchant account can be excruiatingly high (minimum transactions a month, minimum amount charged a month, possible data security, etc).

If by excruciatingly high you mean as easy as $25/month and giving someone the account number to put the funds in/withdraw from ... then yea, its hard. Yes, they withdraw funds from the account ... if you haven't sold enough stuff to cover the $25/monthly service fee.

Me personally, I just want to authorize.net and signed up. Now I can take credit cards on my phone and process everything right then and there, I can also handle automatic recurring payments and echecks, do address verifications ... every single thing anyone else can do for CC processing. Of course, I do have to get the CC#, so if you want something without giving a CC# then you're going to need a trusted third party like paypal or google checkout.

SOMEONE actually has to know where the money is coming from and where its going. There are no anonymous financial transactions, not even with cash.

If you want lower prices, you just have to do enough volume.

Like most things in life, its not hard, it just requires that you put at least A LITTLE REAL EFFORT into find it.

Re:Credibility anyone? (2)

Belial6 (794905) | more than 3 years ago | (#35316892)

https://squareup.com/ [squareup.com] Another way for individuals to take credit cards.

Re:Credibility anyone? (1)

on the 8ball (447914) | more than 3 years ago | (#35322342)

Square is a great new low-cost option for ANYONE to accept credit cards, if you have a smart phone.

No minimums, no monthly fees, just sign up, link to your bank account, get their card reader which plugs into the microphone jack of your smart phone, and take credit cards. Swipe fee is 2.75 percent, phone/internet rate is 3.25 percent. Very good option. I just signed up.

Re:Credibility anyone? (2)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#35316914)

eBay would be dead in the water without Paypal, which is why they bought it.

Almost excruciatingly false.

eBay could have set up its own payments system where you deposit money ahead of time and debit your account as you buy things there.

eBay could also have set up a fungible payments system that could be used with any website, mimicking Paypal in every way (except the crusty ways).

They realized that Paypal was popular, well-understood, easy to use, expensive to replicate, and cheap to own.

So they pwned it. L33terally.

Re:Credibility anyone? (1)

RockDoctor (15477) | more than 3 years ago | (#35323294)

Online auctions would be a PITA if the buyer had to go the post office, get a money order, send it off, wait a week for seller to receive it, wait another couple of weeks for it to clear, then wait another week for the item to arrive.

What is this about waiting for a postal order to "clear"? They are, to all intents and purposes, cash. Just take them into the post office with some proof of identity that matches the name on the P.O. (if it's crossed), and walk away with the cash.

Or ... are you possibly in a country that seceded from Britain before the Post Office was formed.

Re:Credibility anyone? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35315820)

Is it getting warm under your tinfoil hat?

Re:Credibility anyone? (1)

vrmlguy (120854) | more than 3 years ago | (#35315832)

My sources disagree with what Paypal is saying. http://www.quora.com/Can-PayPal-withdraw-money-from-a-linked-Bank-account [quora.com]

Re:Credibility anyone? (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#35316952)

You explicitly authorize Paypal to make withdrawals in certain situations when you open the account. Funding your account from your bank on your orders, getting money from your bank to cover payments they're making on your orders, and covering chargebacks of money you collected through them, are authorized.

You do not authorize them to do it capriciously. That is what they were being accused of by people who either did not understand the terms of service or chose to slander the company.

Re:Credibility anyone? (1)

1s44c (552956) | more than 3 years ago | (#35322862)

You explicitly authorize Paypal to make withdrawals in certain situations when you open the account. Funding your account from your bank on your orders, getting money from your bank to cover payments they're making on your orders, and covering chargebacks of money you collected through them, are authorized.

You do not authorize them to do it capriciously. That is what they were being accused of by people who either did not understand the terms of service or chose to slander the company.

Paypal do attempt to withdraw large sums of money from linked credit cards and bank accounts. The amounts they attempt to withdraw are greatly in excess of the disputed amount. I know because they tried, and failed, to pull that on me. In the end they sent a debt collection agency after me who were actually far more reasonable than paypal themselves. The agency accepted they didn't have any case and backed down after I talked to them.

The dispute was due to someone claiming I never sent them goods I sold them on ebay. I had signed proof of delivery but that wasn't enough for paypal.

Morals of the story:
Don't deal with paypal. If you ever do close the paypal account, and any linked credit cards and bank accounts right away.
Don't sell on ebay unless you have plenty of time, need the money, and won't get too upset if you get robbed.
Don't buy on ebay unless you have plenty of time, and don't really care if you lose the money and the goods.
Debt collection agencies can be reasonable if you show them proof that they won't win a court case.

Re:Credibility anyone? (4, Insightful)

pixelpusher220 (529617) | more than 3 years ago | (#35315848)

Indeed - from the blog meaculpa

In a press release issued today, the Courage to Resist organization claimed that their resistance to follow our policy is because PayPal sought to withdraw funds from their checking account. To be clear: PayPal cannot take such action without the authorization of an account holder

from the statement by Jeff Paterson of Support Network.

They said they would not unrestrict our account unless we authorized PayPal to withdraw funds from our organization's checking account by default.

So Paypal, first doesn't call him a liar with that statement, and secondly claims they would never take money from Support Networks bank account without authorization in order to refute the claim that they requested specific authorization to remove money from Support Networks bank account.

Simply priceless.

Re:Credibility anyone? (1)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | more than 3 years ago | (#35317418)

PayPal sought [the authorization] to withdraw funds from their account. That's the thing. I seek to enter your house... I stand at the door yelling. Or ring the doorbell. In any case, I don't just walk in. Doesn't mean I'm trying to break in; just means I'm seeking to enter.

I don't see a logical disconnect here. PayPal wants an account to use to draw funds out of, for chargebacks or refunds or whatever. Paypal wants this when you do massive transactional volume and might owe PayPal a lot of money in some forseeable situation. They said, "Link us to an account we can draw money out of in certain situations, and authorize us to do so."

Also, where was this original claim that they're refuting? I don't see it. As I understood (as of yesterday), the issue WAS that PayPal froze their accounts for non-compliance in this respect; they said specifically that they wanted an account with withdraw authorization.

Re:Credibility anyone? (4, Informative)

pixelpusher220 (529617) | more than 3 years ago | (#35318016)

Also, where was this original claim that they're refuting? I don't see it. As I understood (as of yesterday), the issue WAS that PayPal froze their accounts for non-compliance in this respect

from PayPal's blog [thepaypalblog.com]:

"We recently placed a temporary limitation of the Courage to Resist organization’s PayPal account as they had not complied to our stated policy requiring non profits to associate a bank account with their PayPal account (for the vast majority of non-profits, this is not an issue)."

So PayPal is claiming that this was only because they wouldn't 'link' a bank account with their PayPal account. No explanation of why this only happened after 3 years and coincidentally closely followed CTR sponsoring Manning.

Next you have CTR's spokesman saying that after the account suspension, they did provide the bank info, but that PayPal wanted even more - the permission to withdraw funds directly from the bank account. This is the relevant part that PayPal has not addressed. Did they actually request this? If so, they haven't mentioned it in their blog post. They simply cite the 'link an account', not grant us debit authorization on said account.

No one is going to give a 3rd party processor that type of permission and it is not in PayPals User Agreement. They specifically say they will take you to collections if you owe them money but do not remotely mention they will dock your account directly.

From the PayPal User Agreement Actions They May Take [paypal.com]

"10.3 Reimbursement for Your Liability. In the event that you are liable for any amounts owed to PayPal, PayPal may immediately remove such amounts from your Balance. If you do not have a Balance that is sufficient to cover your liability, your Account will have a negative Balance and you will be required to immediately add funds to your Balance to eliminate the negative Balance. If you do not do so, PayPal may engage in collection efforts to recover such amounts from you."

So even if you OWE THEM MONEY they aren't saying they can go directly into your bank account and take it. Yet they asked for this very permission of CTR.

Re:Credibility anyone? (2)

doconnor (134648) | more than 3 years ago | (#35315888)

I understand PayPal blocks accounts for all kinds of questionable reasons which aren't political. "Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity."

Re:Credibility anyone? (2)

GooberToo (74388) | more than 3 years ago | (#35316014)

"Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity."

This is slashdot. The masses are too busy creating malice with their stupidity.

Re:Credibility anyone? (4, Insightful)

Compaqt (1758360) | more than 3 years ago | (#35316078)

"Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity."

With all the recent disclosures, does that apply anymore for anyone other that a naif?

Would you believe a plan to destroy a journalist's career simply because he supports Wikileaks? All just stupidity? The emails say otherwise [salon.com].

Re:Credibility anyone? (1)

Kazoo the Clown (644526) | more than 3 years ago | (#35317594)

Would you believe a plan to destroy a journalist's career simply because he supports Wikileaks? All just stupidity? The emails say otherwise [salon.com].

I'm not so sure that's what they say. We could just have a maverick loose cannon at HB Gary who went too far afield in his zealousness to grab a big contract, and whose sense of ethics is, shall we say-- AWOL? Despite the fact that the presentation was prepared "in conjunction with several top security firms," no doubt the presentation was thrown together by one individual, likely this same maverick, without any of the brains of these security firms awareness before it was too late. While it's possible they were all on the same page, even a couple of idiots could do damage all by themselves if they are salivating over landing a huge B of A contract to do some "black ops" -- and even if B of A execs saw the presentation, they could have been too naive to know exactly how far over the line some of these proposals are (if they understand them at all), and what was either legally permissible or what an outfit supposedly "in the business" could get away with or how far afield these big named security corps might go. Quite possibly, the fact that these other security firms name was on the presentation was the credibility HB Gary needed to sell it to B of A, in order to assuage fears that this might be risky behaviour...

Not to excuse any of them, but I'm hesitant to read more into it than is there, and I think there's no question that stupidity is a significant component in any case.

Re:Credibility anyone? (1)

rainmouse (1784278) | more than 3 years ago | (#35316716)

I understand PayPal blocks accounts for all kinds of questionable reasons which aren't political. "Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity."

It didn't stop them from blocking the KKK. Actually I went to double check on the official KKK site and they still have support from Visa and Mastercard but no longer Paypal. I guess the bad press gave them a change of heart.
In order to find out their payment details I added a thousand dollar donation to my card and went to payment options and the cheeky bastards saw fit to add a further 250 dollars to the total on my fake donation for 'shipping'!

It's a scary site though, a real eye opener. They sell hate filled rascist t-shirts varying from XXX large down to shirts for 2 year olds. (Sorry getting a little off topic but my point was that Paypal were still supporting these guys when they cut off Wikileaks).

Re:Credibility anyone? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35320564)

In PayPal's case, their stupidity rises to malice. They just arbitrarily freeze any account, at any time, for any reason, then make it difficult for you to contact them to resolve it.

Seriously, I'm astonished that some other bank hasn't come up with a competitor to utterly crush PayPal into the dust, or if they have, that they refuse to market it . Even the notoriously bad customer service of most credit card processors treats you like royalty compared to PayPal, and everybody who has ever had an account on PayPal with over a thousand bucks in it knows it.

Re:Credibility anyone? (1)

1s44c (552956) | more than 3 years ago | (#35322870)

I understand PayPal blocks accounts for all kinds of questionable reasons which aren't political. "Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity."

They block accounts for one reason; they want to keep the cash in the account. It's not stupidity, it's ( technically legal ) theft.

Re:Credibility anyone? (5, Informative)

LordLimecat (1103839) | more than 3 years ago | (#35315930)

Then you apparently didnt actually read the earlier story, where the explaination boils down to,

  • CTR claimed nonprofit status with paypal
  • Paypal has a policy requiring a bank account to be associated with such accounts
  • Paypal warned CTR that they were not in compliance with said requirements
  • CTR ignored said warnings, and had their account frozen

Source for claims (here [thepaypalblog.com])

We recently placed a temporary limitation of the Courage to Resist organization’s PayPal account as they had not complied to our stated policy requiring non profits to associate a bank account with their PayPal account (for the vast majority of non-profits, this is not an issue).

In a press release issued today, the Courage to Resist organization claimed that their resistance to follow our policy is because PayPal sought to withdraw funds from their checking account. To be clear: PayPal cannot take such action without the authorization of an account holder, nor does it ever take such unauthorized actions.

But no, CTR and slashdots sourceless claims are totally more credible than that. And its totally bogus for Paypal to ask CTR to follow the same requirements as everyone else.

I can agree the unfreezing has a tenuous link with Manning-- all the attention around this non-story has made paypal choose the path of least resistance, which is to reinstate the account and lift the restrictions.

Mod Parent Up (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35315990)

Their explanation makes sense. Not everything has to be a conspiracy.

Everything involving 2+ people is conspiracy (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35316156)

Since most things can be viewed as bad by some group of people you can then label almost anything being done by more than 1 person as a conspiracy by definition.

Some places in the USA have successfully gone after single individuals and jailed them on conspiracy charges involving only themselves. So, its possible to legally conspire with yourself.

Therefore almost everything can be called a conspiracy. The only real affect being that Westerners immediately lower the credibility of whatever is classified as a conspiracy (its impact is subliminal, just like saying THINK will actually stimulate more thought.)

Re:Everything involving 2+ people is conspiracy (1)

tqk (413719) | more than 3 years ago | (#35317000)

Since most things can be viewed as bad by some group of people you can then label almost anything being done by more than 1 person as a conspiracy

Why did you even bother to make this post?!? What a buncha' party line drivel!

Try to bring something to the conversation, not just spout platitudes.

Re:Mod Parent Up (2)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 3 years ago | (#35316634)

Their explanation makes sense. Not everything has to be a conspiracy.

Think of how much ad revenue Slashdot would lose if this philosophy were widely adopted.

Re:Mod Parent Up (1)

sco08y (615665) | more than 3 years ago | (#35317440)

Their explanation makes sense. Not everything has to be a conspiracy.

Think of how much ad revenue Slashdot would lose if this philosophy were widely adopted.

Not much. I suspect people who are conspiracy minded probably tend to block ads.

Re:Mod Parent Up (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 3 years ago | (#35317846)

Not much. I suspect people who are conspiracy minded probably tend to block ads.

It doesn't matter if they block it, their comments still drive ad-revenue.

Re:Credibility anyone? (1)

pixelpusher220 (529617) | more than 3 years ago | (#35316076)

well CTR claimed that PayPal requested permission to withdraw cash from their bank account. PayPal did not refute this in their post. This by indications is not part of their standard requirements, only that an account be associated with the PayPal account. Not that PayPal gets withdrawal rights to the account.

The only defense for the block PayPal offered was that they would never remove money from a bank account without permission. Which they had previously requested. So what exactly is PayPal denying again?

Re:Credibility anyone? (2)

LordLimecat (1103839) | more than 3 years ago | (#35316148)

Paypal very clearly in the second paragraph stated

Courage to Resist organization claimed that their resistance to follow our policy is because PayPal sought to withdraw funds from their checking account. To be clear: PayPal cannot take such action without the authorization of an account holder, nor does it ever take such unauthorized actions.

Seems like a refutation to me.

Re:Credibility anyone? (2)

sarastro (467532) | more than 3 years ago | (#35316234)

I don't think it is a refutation. Paypal did not deny they requested withdrawal permission,
they only denied that they could withdraw without permission.

Nice way of talking around the main question.

Re:Credibility anyone? (2)

pixelpusher220 (529617) | more than 3 years ago | (#35316414)

PayPal refuted that they intended to withdraw funds without authorization. But CTR made no such claim. They claimed it was requested PayPal be able to withdraw funds by default. They are different statements.

CTR also claimed that the request for permission to withdraw funds was made as a condition of reinstating their account. PayPal still has not said whether this requirement is part of the standard agreement; my guess is if it were they would have said so. The wordsmithing being done doesn't look good for PayPal.

If PayPal can just willynilly debit *your* bank account, I don't see them being in business very long...

Re:Credibility anyone? (1)

BitZtream (692029) | more than 3 years ago | (#35316572)

. PayPal still has not said whether this requirement is part of the standard agreement; my guess is if it were they would have said so.

It is, and they did say so, but you just didn't read that part. Its pretty clearly stated in the ToS and in the previous article about this subject.

Re:Credibility anyone? (2)

pixelpusher220 (529617) | more than 3 years ago | (#35316886)

It is, and they did say so

please cite where they said this.

From the PayPal User Agreement Actions they may take [paypal.com]

"10.3 Reimbursement for Your Liability. In the event that you are liable for any amounts owed to PayPal, PayPal may immediately remove such amounts from your Balance. If you do not have a Balance that is sufficient to cover your liability, your Account will have a negative Balance and you will be required to immediately add funds to your Balance to eliminate the negative Balance. If you do not do so, PayPal may engage in collection efforts to recover such amounts from you."

So even if you OWE THEM MONEY they aren't saying they can go directly into your bank account and take it. Yet they asked for this very permission of CTR.

Re:Credibility anyone? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35316816)

Paypal requested permission to withdraw cash from their bank account. They did not refute this.
What your quote says is: "To be clear: PayPal cannot take such action without the authorization of an account holder, nor does it ever take such unauthorized actions."

It's not a refutation. What they are saying is "We can't take money from your account unless you give us permission. Oh, btw, can we have your permission? No? Oh, ok, we'll freeze your account."

Re:Credibility anyone? (1)

tqk (413719) | more than 3 years ago | (#35317104)

Courage to Resist organization claimed that their resistance to follow our policy is because PayPal sought to withdraw funds from their checking account. To be clear: PayPal cannot take such action without the authorization of an account holder, nor does it ever take such unauthorized actions.

Seems like a refutation to me.

Sounds like massive communication problems on both sides. If you need to talk to one of your customers, don't you follow up? Don't you check your mail and other communications gateways? Or, do you ignore incoming contacts, and cut off your valued customers when they fail to live up to your letter of the law?

Typical miscommunication cockup. Humans don't generally tend to communicate all that well. We shouldn't be designing systems that expect them to.

Re:Credibility anyone? (1)

1s44c (552956) | more than 3 years ago | (#35322880)

Paypal very clearly in the second paragraph stated

Courage to Resist organization claimed that their resistance to follow our policy is because PayPal sought to withdraw funds from their checking account. To be clear: PayPal cannot take such action without the authorization of an account holder, nor does it ever take such unauthorized actions.

They terms or service are so huge no-one would notice that just signing up allows paypal to make up numbers and withdraw them from customers bank accounts.

If you deal with paypal you will get robbed, it's just a matter of time.

Re:Credibility anyone? (1)

DarthVain (724186) | more than 3 years ago | (#35316550)

Someone is the last story on this topic today, said that they worked at PayPal and that it was far more likely that they didn't have their paper work in order for being a non-profit, and that without that paperwork properly documenting them as a non-profit, PayPal would shut them down, and has many others for the exact same thing in the past.

So yes, the truth is out there, you just have to wade through a river of shit to find it.

Re:Credibility anyone? (1)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | more than 3 years ago | (#35317452)

But no, CTR and slashdots sourceless claims are totally more credible than that.

Three men make a tiger.

Re:Credibility anyone? (1)

AK Marc (707885) | more than 3 years ago | (#35320742)

My understanding is that they hadn't followed the rules for years and the enforcement against them was lax until they started the most recent push and then it was swift and decisive. So yes, they hadn't been following the rules, but they hadn't for years.

Also, a "linked" account is "linked" by giving PayPal authorization to withdraw funds whenever they feel like it. They "promise" to only do so in certain circumstances, but the ability to do so is not functionally restricted at all. They could do it for plenty of illegal/unauthorized reasons and you'd have to sue to get it back, and even though it would technically be felony fraud, from the people that have had their money seized, no one will prosecute them for it.

Or are you stating that my statements of what they "could" do are incorrect? That the facts are correct but it never happens that way?

Re:Credibility anyone? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35338658)

And I almost cancelled my Paypal account thanks to this fiasco. WTF slashdot?

Re:Credibility anyone? (1)

thegarbz (1787294) | more than 3 years ago | (#35322488)

If anybody believes that, I have another bridge to sell them.

They came out and said that there was a breach of the terms of services for donations. They quoted the direct line in their terms of service. They asked the customer to rectify before the account will be reinstated. The customer did, Paypal did. In the long list of Paypal's evils this has to have been the lamest 2 days worth of bitching about them I have ever seen.

Resistance is future. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35315822)

Where is this "The Courage to Resist PayPal" account Anuj Nayar talks about?

S.O.P. (2)

meerling (1487879) | more than 3 years ago | (#35315874)

Sorry, but Paypal has done a lot of questionable things, and only retracts them if they get enough bad press.
Is his story true? I don't know, it could be, but then again...

Paypal should really do a little more investigation when these issues crop up, and contact the account holders to try and fix or at least clarify any issues before locking an account. It wouldn't take much more work in the short run, but it would save a lot of work in the long run, not to mention legal and public relations bills.

Re:S.O.P. (1)

1s44c (552956) | more than 3 years ago | (#35322902)

You don't understand their business. If they lock a number of accounts then only unlock the accounts where someone made a big stink they still have huge extra income to add to their bottom line. If they don't lock too many accounts they can discredit their victims as crooks who were asking for it.

This extra income is what pays for management bonuses at paypal and may be what is keeping the whole company afloat.

'nothing to do with WikiLeaks' (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35315890)

"PayPal communications director Anuj Nayar said in a blog posting that the decision 'had nothing to do with WikiLeaks.'"

Bullshit.

Re:'nothing to do with WikiLeaks' (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35316228)

+1 great post!!!!1

Let me be clear ... (1)

Compaqt (1758360) | more than 3 years ago | (#35316012)

Is that the new code for "let me be totally inscrutable"?

Obama starts off his weasel worded sentences in the same way.

And it's both sides of the aisle. David Cameron (UK PM) does the same thing.

If you believe that... (1)

woboyle (1044168) | more than 3 years ago | (#35316018)

If you believe what PayPal said, then I have a real deal for you on a slightly used bridge...

Re:If you believe that... (1)

1s44c (552956) | more than 3 years ago | (#35322904)

If you believe what PayPal said, then I have a real deal for you on a slightly used bridge...

Just don't accept payment for that bridge via paypal or you will lose the money and they will wipe out your bank account..

Conspiracy (1)

BJ_Covert_Action (1499847) | more than 3 years ago | (#35316104)

Obviously this is just part of the government conspiracy to out wikileaks supporters^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H terrorists! At the behest of the U.S. government, Paypal allowed the account to be opened, only to seize the funds shortly thereafter. This caused all of the terrorists to come out in support of Manning and wikileaks temporarily so all of their IP addresses could be gathered. Now that the NSA has handed over the relevant data to high lord of the internet police Joe Biden, PayPal can release the account once again, to lure in more unsuspecting terrorist supporters!

If you're smart like me, you'll only post in support of wikileaks anonymously on niche sites that nobody visits like slashdot!

*dons tinfoil hat*

From the Article (2)

indy_Muad'Dib (869913) | more than 3 years ago | (#35316166)

"To be clear: PayPal cannot take such action without the authorization of an account holder, nor does it ever take such unauthorized actions."

What a line of bullshit, they have stolen from me twice to the tune of $5300.

4 years and I'm still fighting these fuckers over this.

i even won in small claims court due to them not showing up and haven't received a penny, and i likely never will.

Re:From the Article (1)

1s44c (552956) | more than 3 years ago | (#35322912)

"To be clear: PayPal cannot take such action without the authorization of an account holder, nor does it ever take such unauthorized actions."

What a line of bullshit, they have stolen from me twice to the tune of $5300.

4 years and I'm still fighting these fuckers over this.

i even won in small claims court due to them not showing up and haven't received a penny, and i likely never will.

I feel for you. They tried to rob me for a much smaller amount.

I see people who should know better using paypal all the time. If I warn them they just come back with crap about how convenient it is.

So What (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35316190)

Regardless of the amount of money PFC Manning raises through PayPal, he is still going to be tried under the Uniform Code of Military Justice in front of military personnel. It is not going to be a jury that could be swayed by the trickery of defense lawyers. Unless he has a solid case that disproves his actions, relying on reasonable doubt alone likely will not clear him.

Re:So What (1)

hubie (108345) | more than 3 years ago | (#35316990)

I've heard it said that because of this, he doesn't have to pay for his defense. If that is true, just what is this defense fund raising money for, and what is going to happen to the money that is raised? Anyone know if this organization has addressed this?

Re:So What (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35317868)

He has hired civilian defense, I'm not sure I would trust using .mil provided defense in a case like this given the huge conflict of interest.

Arbitrary and capricious decisions (1)

pyrr (1170465) | more than 3 years ago | (#35316208)

I believe the Paypal spokesperson when she says that the decision to freeze the accounts had nothing to do with the Wikileaks controversy, and it's obvious that the reversal is mostly due to bad publicity or maybe they just had one of the two people in the organization with common sense adjust the policy in this specific case. The arbitrary and capricious manner in which Paypal makes decisions really isn't suited to a company that is handling people's money. In this case, they probably really didn't care about the controversy, they just wanted to have a bank account on file for the customer so they could drain it if there ever was some sort of dispute.

It's a reasonably useful service and my favorable experiences, both as a sender of money and receiver of money outweigh the bad ones. But they just don't seem to have matured to the point where they can be taken seriously as an institution. "The World's Most-Loved Way to Pay and Be Paid" is the stupidest motto ever. I'm sorry, "love" isn't a factor I consider when transferring money in a commercial transaction. "Trust" would describe what I'm looking for, "Secure" would also be an appropriate adjective, even "Easiest" might work. And if I don't want to link a bank account because I'm paranoid about what they'd do with it, that's my prerogative. There's a recent story on the Consumerist blog (consumerist.com) about Paypal "finding" in a user's favor, but debiting more and more money from their account. That's why it might be a bad idea to trust Paypal with your banking information. I would just expect an agency that transfers money and handles sensitive financial information to be a little less incompetent in their fiduciary duties.

Re:Arbitrary and capricious decisions (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35371880)

Have you got any evidence PalPal are making arbitrary and capricious decisions about this policy? PalPal's statement indicates that the account was unfrozen after Courage to Resist actually complied with the PayPal policy.

This is Big (0)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | more than 3 years ago | (#35316754)

Paypal probably* did this because they received a National Security Letter.

Now, the action they took was trivial to work around (spend 20 minutes opening an extra bank account that is cleared daily), so I don't see the giant fuss in the cat-and-mouse game that is the modern police state.

But CTR didn't get that and made a big stink about it. OK, fine.

Now, because of the PR disaster, PayPal is likely* defying a secret order from the government. This changes some things about how people will think about PayPal.

* NSL's are secret and nobody is allowed to talk about them, so the best we can do is go on prior information and make informed guesses. Transparency fail, obviously.

Re:This is Big (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35318640)

Your tin foil hat is on too tight, it's cutting off blood flow to your brain.

OK, WTF slashdot. It's been 28 minutes since you last successfully posted a comment

Re:This is Big (1)

JSBiff (87824) | more than 3 years ago | (#35321324)

How can the government prevent you from talking about a national security letter? Wouldn't that be making a law prohibiting the exercise of free speech? We're not talking here about some government employee with a security clearance who *agreed* to keep state secrets here.

An NSL is something sent to you as a business without you requesting the letter or consenting to it. At that point, if you want to tell other people about it, by what Constitutional power can Congress possibly prohibit you from talking about it?

Re:This is Big (1)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | more than 3 years ago | (#35321408)

At that point, if you want to tell other people about it, by what Constitutional power can Congress possibly prohibit you from talking about it?

It's the Patriot Act [wikipedia.org] - the Constitution is suspended, didn't you hear? We got turrists who hate us for our freedoms.

Oh yes they can and do take money (1)

BudAaron (1231468) | more than 3 years ago | (#35316836)

We had a PayPal account some years ago. At that time the easiest way to get free software was to order using PayPal and then dispute the payment. PayPal would immediately take the money out of our bank account until the dispute was resolved. It always went in favor of the buyer so we lost thousands of dollars. It got so bad that PayPal zeroed our bank account. They then closed our account permanently. Worse, I had family members unrelated to our business who's acconts were also closed because they were relatives. So yes - PayPal can and does take money out of your linked account without asking unless they've changed their policy.

Buy the Bullet (0, Flamebait)

DaveAtFraud (460127) | more than 3 years ago | (#35317284)

Time to burn some karma!!!

Is there a corresponding site for those of us who wish to donate to a fund that will buy the bullets that the firing squad will use when they take the traitorous little bastard out and shoot him? And, if so, does the site accept PayPal?

Cheers,
Dave

Re:Buy the Bullet (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35319934)

Bradley Manning must have allegedly done something right if it's gotten all of the nut jobs THIS pissed off.

America FUCK YA!

WTF is up with /. and PayPal? (1)

Krater76 (810350) | more than 3 years ago | (#35317748)

They hate America! Or, err, hate those who hate America! Oh, I'm so confused. Someone please tell me how I should feel.

I think I missed the /. memo notifying me to add PayPal to the list of companies I'm supposed to hate.

All joking aside, looks like PayPal had a legitimate reason to suspend the account. The organization was forced to step through a few other hoops to get around thee reasons and are good to go. How was this ever a story in the first place?

This is like when they suspended the Mojang (Minecraft) account and everyone got all up in arms. But look at it from PayPal's view, an account with very little history goes from zero to and insane amount of money in a short amount of time. It tripped their BS alarm and they locked it down to save them money since they are the ones who get fucked in cases of fraud. It got sorted out and it's all good now.

Re:WTF is up with /. and PayPal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35317838)

It tripped their BS alarm and they locked it down to save them money since they are the ones who get fucked in cases of fraud.

I believe that is generally untrue, it is PayPals users who bear the brunt of the fraud, thus the massive /.rage towards them.

Re:WTF is up with /. and PayPal? (1)

Krater76 (810350) | more than 3 years ago | (#35319812)

As far as their credit transactions, they can get pretty hosed fairly quickly.

Scenario: I am someone who accepts credit card payments via PayPal.

In the case of a legitimate business (like Mojang/Minecraft) they give the purchaser something for the money they told PayPal to charge them for. Once that transaction has occurred, the business takes the money from PayPal. Transaction complete (I'm completely ignoring fees, taxes, etc.). Now, Paypal finds out that the transaction was fraudulent and has to return the money to the customer, either through a refund or is forced via a chargeback. Unless they require the business to give the money back, they are going to be out that money (and extra in the case of a chargeback).

In the case of an illegitimate business, let's say they pretend to sell stuff. They take money from customers via PayPal, never deliver, and close up shop. The business is gone - took the money and ran. PayPal is now be forced to refund or chargeback because the customer never got their product or service and be out some serious cash.

I work in this space, although not straight to the customer like PayPal, and the levels of fraud are ridiculous. Credit cards are insanely profitable for criminals and the reason transaction fees for businesses are so high is because whoever is indemnifying the transaction can get hit hard with fraud and lose a ton of money. There aren't a lot of solutions to the problem either which is the most frustrating thing.

Re:WTF is up with /. and PayPal? (1)

jack2000 (1178961) | more than 3 years ago | (#35322638)

Sure there is. Remove all privacy inherent in hard cash. Don't have untraceable money. Use cryptographically sound multi-factor authentication with a ridiculous number of bits in the key.
Make "money" revoke-able so when some one looses a case in court and is required to pay money if they don't WANT to, the governing body could revoke that money as simple as pressing a button.

Re:WTF is up with /. and PayPal? (1)

fireylord (1074571) | more than 3 years ago | (#35322954)

Sure there is. Remove all privacy inherent in hard cash. Don't have untraceable money. Use cryptographically sound multi-factor authentication with a ridiculous number of bits in the key.

Make "money" revoke-able so when some one looses a case in court and is required to pay money if they don't WANT to, the governing body could revoke that money as simple as pressing a button.

RED ALERT! said governing body could well be the government by any chance? Well **** that for a start, they're already treating us like cattle in so many ways, you think that hard cash should be next?

Re:WTF is up with /. and PayPal? (1)

jack2000 (1178961) | more than 3 years ago | (#35337910)

It sure will eliminate money theft. Even if the crook kills you the govt can recall your money and give it to your relatives.

CTR fixed their account so paypal opened access (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35322496)

This was CTR's fault. Paypal charges fees. These fees require a source. That source is a bank account. CTR would not associate a bank account with their paypal account. Their account was frozen until the bank account association happened.

This whole story was simply used as a tool used by CTR to get free press.

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