How does Honey Money work?

Honey Money started as premium credit, which it still is, but now you can also use it to pay for derailments.

Honey Money FAQ

1. Is this some cheesy gimmicky fake internet points thing?

No, it’s basically store credit at Beeminder. (So also yes, in that it’s only useful within Beeminder. And also our friends at Manifold — you can convert between honey and Manifold's currency, mana.)

2. What’s it good for?

Premium plans and derailments. If in the future we have anything like support contracts or anything else we may charge for, it’s good for it. Nothing with real-world cash value though. In that sense it’s like a strictly in-world currency.

3. What about sting immediacy?? What if I don’t want to use it for derailments?

Currently, while people are getting used to this, you have to opt in to have honey money applied to derailments. In the future we intend to have a "don't touch my honey when I derail" option but by default honey money will be automatically used for everything. It's an ongoing project to transition everything to be honey-money-centric but it'll be worth it. And, again, you'll always have the option to have your payment method charged directly if you don't want to think about honey money.

4. How do I get some?

You can just buy it. We also give it out sometimes, like for bug bounties or refunds or for student discounts.

5. Is it possible to have negative honey money?

Not normally but if your payment method fails, for example, then it might happen. There are no overdraft fees or anything shady like that.

6. Do I earn interest on my balance? (No one has asked this, just humor us.)

Yes, currently 2% per year, compounded continuously. Of course no one cares about this, nor do people ever really carry a balance long enough for it to matter. It’s just the mathematically right thing to do.

7. How do I use my honey money?

Any premium plans or upgrades you get, we just use any honey money you have automatically. For derailments you have to click a thing on your payments page

(Later we want to generalize this and let you have any number of payment methods on file and let you put them in any order you like and we’ll try them in that order. By default honey money would be last for derailments and first for non-derailments, like premium.)

8. Can I withdraw honey money if I never use it (like because I never derail on my goals)?

No, you definitely can’t cash it out. There are a bunch of legal and accounting reasons for that. See also our old glutton-for-punishment blog post on why, even philosophically, we don’t like the idea of depositing money and getting it back if you stay on track.

We also want to discourage the mindset that Beeminder is a game where the objective is to never pay anything. That sounds self-serving but we strongly believe that Beeminder works better if you don’t view derailing as failing. So putting in honey money up front should not feel particularly onerous. You’ll use it eventually! If not, you’re doing it wrong.

9. Why was this worth doing?

See our blog post for background and a dozen different reasons we wanted to do this. The actual impetus was a science experiment we’re doing with the University of Virginia (we needed to give students a way to beemind meaningfully without putting their own money at risk). But we wanted to do this anyway to support payment methods that don’t let us make arbitrary future charges, which has increasingly been a problem for users in India. Other reasons include not throwing PayPal users under the bus, supporting more ironclad commitments, better ability to pay bounties and do refunds and weekly invoices, future in-app purchase on iOS, etc.

Keywords: premium credit, beeminder credit, mana, beeminder's currency, pre-paying for derailments, depositing money with Beeminder

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