Not being a big PayPal user, I'm a few days late on this announcement by the young yet venerable online currency mover.
SAN JOSE, Calif., Aug. 31, 2005 - PayPal, the global online payment service, today announced new micropayments processing fees for digital goods. The new pricing will provide merchants with a more affordable way to process payments for low-cost digital content such as video games, online greeting cards, news articles, mobile phone content and digital music.
Why does this matter to the average designer? Well, if you are doing any 3D work in your design process, you will at some point be in a position to sell 3D designs of your own - piecemeal - to videogame companies, simulation service bureaus, or even the military... all to help populate virtual worlds (actually, this is already happening). If you're a graphic designer, this move by PayPal might provide additional options for selling your work over the internet; although I'm guessing you'd have to find a way to maintain control over your work or watch as design pirates take over your business. Another option is to take orders from people who just want you to send your custom, handprinted "Get Well" card to a relative of theirs. Low monetary risk to them. Design-safe for you. You might not get rich, but then again some big companies started out small. Just without the advantage of micro.
With all the designer laments nowadays (example), maybe some designers wishing for more out of their jobs will see the opportunities instead of just the roadblocks. I hope so.