July 24, 2015

That's It for Tip Jar as Vimeo Pulls the Plug on Video Donations

Vimeo Tip Jar is Shutting Down
Nearly three years after they introduced it, Vimeo is calling it quits with Tip Jar.

While the option was intended to help video creators monetize their free videos, it's no secret that it hasn't exactly taken off. They haven't offered any hard numbers about the total money made from Tip Jar, but it's clear from those with rather large followings that it didn't work as well as they'd hoped. I'm not sure how much it would have helped, but it likely would have been more visible if it was enabled by default on all Pro and Plus accounts, and on all archived videos, immediately after it was introduced. 

Here's Vimeo's response about the situation:

On July 29, we will discontinue Tip Jar and no longer collect tips on your Tip Jar-enabled videos. Any tips you've received up until then will be paid out in accordance with our Payment Addendum. You don't need to take any action to make this happen.

While we're sad to say goodbye to our old friend, this change will allow us to focus on tools like Vimeo On Demand to help creators like you earn money from your videos.

Thanks for your understanding, and for making the most of our creator tools! We really appreciate you sticking with us as we continue to make Vimeo as awesome as possible.

If you're unfamiliar with Tip Jar, here's the launch video:

Vimeo On Demand is a completely different animal than Tip Jar. It's nice that they're going to increase their focus on the VOD service, but you're only going to use Vimeo On Demand for very specific videos, like feature films, a web series, or an educational video. I don't see people paying money before they can watch music videos or camera reviews, and this is one of the areas where Tip Jar actually made a lot of sense.

We'll see how Vimeo moves forward and if they introduce any other kinds of donations, but without an ad-supported mode in place, I don't see a way for them to reward the most prolific creators. One of Vimeo's main selling points is that you don't have ads everywhere, so I wouldn't expect to see that anytime soon.     

Your Comment

7 Comments

mine got deactivated after i uploaded a video containing copyright music which i meant to be private anyway. i didnt set this WHILE uploading, but AFTER. i didnt have 1 minute to do the change, they blocked the tip jar immediately.

what bugs me much more is thr fact that clients are still complaining about playback errors or terrible performance concerning the video player. is Vimeo ever gonna fix that?

July 24, 2015 at 6:02AM, Edited July 24, 6:02AM

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Paul-Louis Pietz Pröve
director / dop / editor
562

I think I've made $3 or something like that after 200+ educational videos. So yeah, doesn't phase me.

July 24, 2015 at 8:52AM, Edited July 24, 8:52AM

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Caleb Pike
Shooter, Educator
286

They also pulled "Watch Later" from the main feed after promising to bring it back.

July 24, 2015 at 10:17AM

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I love the organizational changes. Having likes and watch later under the icon dropdown menu is great.

July 24, 2015 at 5:20PM

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Brooks Reynolds
Director/DOP
463

Vimeo is a disaster. It's a shame bc I have liked their service as a filmmaker for a while, but I don't think that they have too long to live. They're completely fumbling their move into original content. High Maintenance should have been something to build on, but instead they are going with a policy of recruiting youtube stars with large followings rather than curating truly special shows in the way that netflix/hulu/others do. What does this reveal? Well that they don't have much confidence in themselves beyond being a barnacle on youtube's already kind of disgusting bottom. They should be the criterion of youtube and somehow they are lessening themselves beneath even friggin youtube. They need a regime change there, and need to get smart, brave execs who understand original content SOON or they are screwed!!!

July 24, 2015 at 12:57PM

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I gave someone a tip on there once. I wonder if I'm the only one?

July 24, 2015 at 1:55PM, Edited July 24, 1:55PM

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William Streeter
Filmmaker
178

Donated a few bucks. Made like $30. Makes sense for it to go.

July 24, 2015 at 5:20PM

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Brooks Reynolds
Director/DOP
463