Money Streaming on Solana

If Time is Money, why don’t we get paid continuously?

Since Money came into societies for commerce and trade, labor immediately became the most exchanged asset. And by labor, we mean TIME. However, the majority of the labor pool exchanging time for money today is making an awful trade; one with a gigantic disadvantage:

People selling their time for money are giving away interest-free loans to their counterparties.

Workers don’t think too much about this unfavorable trade nowadays, and people are contempt with a “that’s the way it works” mentality mainly because there hasn’t been a better alternative for centuries.

Let us explain.

An Unfair Approach

If Time is Money, why don’t we get paid continuously?

TIME is a continuous medium, as in IT NEVER STOPS. However, PAYMENTS are a scheduled medium, as in SOMEONE NEEDS TO TRIGGER IT.

Most salaried employees get paid either on a monthly basis or a biweekly basis. That is, they work for 30 days, and only then, they get paid. Behind this system of labor lays a dirty little secret 👇

EMPLOYEES ARE GIVING EMPLOYERS A 0% INTEREST LOAN FOR EVERY SECOND THEY WORK, UNTIL THEY GET PAID IN FULL AT THE END OF THE MONTH.

You may think this is not such a big deal until you look at the raw numbers, which reveal that the average worker (worldwide) would be able to take home an additional $446 if they simply charge the rate of inflation instead of 0% for those loans. This is HUGE in most parts of the world and is money left on the table for the benefit of the employer, and at the expense of the employee. THIS IS FOR EVERY SINGLE WORKER IN THE WORLD!

OK, I get it, big problem… now what?

This is a massive problem with a near-impossible solution using the traditional financial system. The fairway to deal with this issue is:

A second worked is a second earned

However, this approach needs a financial infrastructure that would make it possible to pay every worker immediately after every second they actually worked, to avoid the free money conundrum.

Exploring this possibility with the traditional financial is impossible. You’d need a payroll system that can:

  1. Compensate workers based on their contracted rate
  2. Compensate workers every second they work
  3. Compensate workers uniformly (i.e. do it globally, jurisdiction-free, since time is not bounded by local laws)

Today the money transmitters and banks of the world are bounded to walled gardens that don’t talk to each other very well, like SEPA, ACH, Wire Transfers, and even newer ones like PayPal, Zelle, etc., at best let users pay each other inside the garden with relative ease, but that’s where the magic ends. Even the leading payroll systems like Xero and QuickBooks are restricted by these other centralized money transmitter systems with lots of constraints.

If you are a consultant or service provider offering your skillsets to a global audience, you have to rely on many different walled gardens and exorbitant fees to get paid (Payoneer, World Remit, etc.). And if you are an employer with a remote staff working out of different countries, payroll is one of your biggest nightmares today… until now.

A Whole New Wooorld

A new fantastic point of view
No one to tell us, “No”
Or where to go
Or say we’re only dreaming…

Wait, wait… wrong post, Aladdin… although what we’ll be showing below feels nothing short of a wish granted by the Blue Genie.

Blockchain tech and DeFi are here to power a new era for money transmitters. Welcome to “The Money Streaming Era”.

Money Streaming is the concept of continuous payments over time, like a stream of water. The best way to think about this is that the SEPA and ACH systems are to VHS Cassettes and DVDs, what Money Streaming is to Netflix and Spotify.

Money Streaming allows any two parties to define a contract (the stream) that simply states:

  1. The rate at which money flows from party A to B
  2. The permissions and conditions to pause/close/withdraw from the stream (dry-up, top-up, etc.)

The Mean Protocol provides developers in Solana with a Money Streaming Program they can leverage in their applications. The use cases are aplenty, from Salaries, Parking Meters, Retirement Funds, Rent Collection, and more. All use cases where there is an implicit exchange of TIME for MONEY.

Go read the full specification of Money Streaming in the Whitepaper, with lots of illustrative use cases.

If you want to leverage Money Streaming in your own dApp, the easiest way to get started is by running

npm i @mean/money-streaming

You can check out the code HERE, and the developer documentation HERE.

MeanFi Money Streams

You can experience a practical use of the Money Streaming Program in a web3 application on MeanFi.com. We have implemented two of the use cases there, and you can start using them today.

#1) Sending repeating payments: In this use case, you can send money to family or friends (aka remittances) in a repeating fashion, like once a month, or every week, using a money stream. Set it once and forget it. No more trips to Western Union or MoneyGram, no more setting an alarm so you don’t forget, no more uncomfortable moments where Mom has to ask you for the money… all of this happens automagically.

Go to MeanFi → Transfers → Change “One Time Payment” to “Repeating Payment”

#2) Salaries / Payroll: As its name suggests, this is for businesses to pay their employees, or contractors wanting to enforce payment for their services.

Go to MeanFi → Services → Payroll

After you create your Repeating Payment or Payroll, you can find the outgoing Money Stream under your Transfers tab. Depending on your past transfers and streams, you’ll see the money literally streaming out (or in) of the account and into (or from) the recipient's account in real-time.

All money streams (sending and receiving) will show under Transfers.

Wrapping Up

Money Streams are awesome. They allow you to maximize time output with a real-time collection of money. Thanks to Solana’s sub-second block time and finality, anyone can enjoy real-time money streams for a virtually limitless set of use cases.

We look forward to working with developers on the Solana ecosystem to implement Money Streaming in their own apps.

Be like water, my money

- Bruce Lee.

He would’ve said it if he was alive today… true story 😜

Stay in touch with our progress every week, and join the DeFi revolution by checking our website, joining the Mean DAO Discord, and following @MeanFinance on Twitter.

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Mean DAO

Mean DAO

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Mean DAO is the org behind the Mean Protocol and MeanFi, a self-custody, permissionless and trustless bank bringing Crypto and DeFi to everyday banking