When my internship experience with BLISSWAY concluded in August, I wrote down a list of companies I would consider working for next summer. Coinbase because of Brian Armstrong. Shopify because of Alex Danco. Samsara because of Felipe. Stripe becasue of Hugo.
I interviewed Hugo Amsellem on my podcast last October. Hugo created a Kickstarter for musicians in Europe to let artists retain ownership of their projects and reject labels. He described how painful it was to create a way to accept payments online.
Stripe is such a valuable engine of the creator economy. The blogging platform I use, Ghost, integrates with Stripe to let writers receive 100 percent of the money users pay for their content. In 2017, Stripe acquired the world's largest community of individual contributors making money online, Indie Hackers. Gumroad, the world's largest online marketplace for digital entrepreneurs leverages Stripe to power their payments infrastructure.
When I was at BLISSWAY, I believed in our company's mission so strongly. I don't particularly care about highway tolling; BLISSWAY is a company that saves people time. In the future, people will book a trip on BLISSWAY's app and know they are saving minutes on the road for each dollar spent. The impact of my work is what's most important to me. I couldn't work somewhere I didn't think was making the world a better place. Stripe is not a payments platform; Stripe lets people take control of their financial destiny.
Paul Graham's praise is a powerful signal. After reading Luke Burgis' book Wanting, I know that he's a model for me – someone whose magnetic field my ideological compass follows strongly. Regardless, I believe this idea is not hyperbole: what Google did for search, Stripe will do for payments.
Stripe is still a startup. Earlier this year, Patrick Collison, the company's founder and CEO, issued an apology on Hacker News for an instance of fraud on the platform. The speed at which they launch products is remarkable. The Stripe API docs are the standard by which all others are measured.
I'm so excited to join as an intern in their Seattle offices next summer. There is so much work to do – Stripe launched a crypto team less than two months ago. I won't be on this team as an intern, but it's a vector to bring even more people into the internet economy. As the world moves more online, we can realize the vision of the world Hugo, Steph Smith, and Daniel Bourke showed me; a world of seven billion niches; a world of people scraping the inner lining of their souls to create something worth admiring; a world of creators committed to sharing this beauty with each other.