Twitter and Square launch political donations service

The donation service requires politicians to set up an account through Square's cash.me site, which will give them a unique Cashtag that they can tweet to followers.

Twitter announced Tuesday that it is launching a service that allows users to make donations to political campaigns directly from the Twitter app.

The service is in partnership with Square, the payments company founded by Jack Dorsey. Coincidentally (or not) Dorsey is the current CEO of both companies -- Twitter on an interim basis -- and today's news marks the first ever collaboration between them.

The donation service requires politicians to set up an account through Square's cash.me site, which will give them a unique Cashtag. When the politician tweets the Cashtag, the tweet will automatically include an image with a "contribute" button.

twitterflow1.jpg

Campaigns have always been able to share links to their own donation portals, but the process required a lot of clicking and fussing around. To that end, Twitter said that's "why we're making it easier for Twitter users to actively support candidates and causes."

It will be interesting to see how this actually plays out during the political season. Obviously today's news was perfectly timed: the bloated field of Republican contenders will have their second debate tomorrow, giving politicians the perfect setup to tweet pleas for support.

But what remains unclear is whether Twitter users will actually answer those pleas. For the younger, politically apathetic generation, donating to a campaign seems a lot less probable than donating to a cause.