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ENS DOMAINS

Secure and decentralized name service for both on and off chain resources using simple, human-readable names. ENS eliminates the need to copy or type long addresses. With ENS, you'll be able to send money to your friend at 'nifties.eth' instead of '0x4cbe58c50480...', interact with your favorite contract at 'mycontract.eth', or visit a Swarm-hosted site at 'swarmsite.eth'.

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A chat with Makoto Inoue (EnsDomains)

We spoke with Makoto Inoue, dev at @ensdomains , asking questions about the development of the "crypto domain industry".

Hi Makoto, thanks for this opportunity. First of all, could you please explain to newbies what Ethereum Name Service is and how ENS Domains work?

Sure, ENS started as a simple way to tie in Ethereum address (in a hexadecimal format such as 0x12356b....., to human-readable name such as nick.eth. It is supported by over 140 dapps, exchanges, and wallets such as Etherscan, Coinbase wallet, and Metamask. For example, you can search vitalik.eth directly via https://etherscan.io/address/vitalik.eth.

Once you register the name via https://app.ens.domains , you can not only set Eth Address but also other crypto addresses (eg BTC, DODGE), set IPFS to have serverless websites you can access via .eth.link(you can discover the full list here ), issue subdomains, and so on.

In terms of how it works, ENS is just another smart contract. It's one of the oldest Ethereum smart contracts running live since 4th May 2017 so if you are into smart contract development, I highly recommend looking into the smart contract and its architecture.
When we first launched there were no CryptoKitties nor NFT token standards such as ERC721. When we upgraded last year, we transformed ENS .eth registrar to be NFT so that all .eth names can be easily transferred in a secondary market such as OpenSea. Once you own the name, you have full control of how to set and transfer the name. Some people sell their subdomains using subdomain registrar like http://ismoney.eth.link/. Decentraland implemented similar NFT logic to our .eth registrar to turn their avatar as .dcl.eth subdomain. Some wallet providers such as Argent, UniLogin, and Authereum modified their registrar to issue ENS subdomains when creating their wallet to treat ENS subdomain as a username.

How many domains have been registered till now? Do you have additional data you can share with us, like which % is used/linked to an ETH address? Do you know how many domains have collected the largest account?

482k names have been registered (including subdomains and non .eth domains which I will explain later).

The active names are a bit hard to estimate but we have over 280k names which were registered back in 2017 but expired and due to be released in 2nd August. This is because back then ENS names were acquired through an auction where the winner locks deposits on our vault smart contract and can get the money back once the names were released. We changed the system to the annual registration fee model last year and any names which weren't renewed after one year will be released.

The biggest ENS name holder is 0xbcbd4885ee8b2b74249c5ad9b8b668fb256a51b1 which owns more than 1700. I am pretty sure that he/she will release most of the names in Aug. For all ENS related numbers, I recently created a ENS dashboard on Dune Analytics so please check it out.

We saw the secondary market is quite active for example on OpenSea we can notice some interesting sales like "Defi" Wallet.eth (75 Eth), "numeric" 888.eth (32.55 Eth), "city" Madrid.eth (24 Eth) and even "NFT whale" Moderats.eth (6.9 Eth). Do you think this trend and interest in acquiring Premium Domains will increase in the future?

I believe that these are the price during the primary auction. When we launched back in 2017, we prohibited the auction of names less than 7 characters as we knew that shorter names are more valuable and more prone to squatting.

We conducted short name auction 2 years after the initial launch but outsourced OpenSea to conduct hence you can see all the auction bid on their site. So any short names transferred before November 2019 are more likely primary sales. I did a bit of analysis of how the short name auction here.

According to the data collected at that time, more than 99% of short name winning bids were below 10ETH (around $2k). We used the amount as a premium when expired name becomes released after 90 days grace period and the price decrease over 28 days, so I guess the secondary price may have some influence over the ceiling.

I understand that NFT collectors prefer to hold assets in the hope of future price increase. I am sure that it will happen to a handful of names but our goal is for ENS names to be used by the rightful owners who can benefit from owning easily recognizable names for their brand and businesses.

There are also other competitors in the market, which specific feature do you think make EnsDomains unique compared to them?

The DNSSEC integration. That's the first feature I worked on when I joined back in 2018 so I feel very strongly about it.

Currently, most people pay an annual registration fee to acquire .eth ENS names. However, you can also have ENS names tied in with DNS addresses such as .xyz, .luxe, and .kred and we are planning to open up to the majority of top-level domains (eg: .com, .org) this year. In DNS there is a way to prove the ownership of the domain (called DNSEC) so we use it to assign DNS name to the rightful owner. Anyone who puts their .eth address under .ens.yourdomain.domain can submit a proof into a smart contract to prove the ownership. Because there is no possibility of squatting, it does not require any annual fee like .eth.

This could potentially open up a wider usage of ENS outside of the Ethereum ecosystem, as it allows the normal business owner and government organisation to have payment address associated without investing much in the infrastructure (all they need is an Ethereum wallet and the ability to modify their DNS record). Imagine Unicef asked you to donate ETH to unicef.org rather than unicef.eth. .eth looks sexier to Ethereum people but having ENS name associated with the official URL will make it easier for normal people to recognise that it's the legitimate name.

This may sound a bit boring for NFT lovers, but this is not it. The top-level domain owners can claim ownership and have their custom logic associated so there are ways to extend. The prime example is .kred. .kred provides normal domain service but their DNS domain is also NFT! A bit mind-blowing, isn't it?

Privacy: what is ENS doing for it and what are your advices for any domain user?

ENS is as private as Ethereum is, and we can't do anything about on our own without better privacy-preserving primitives on-chain.

Also having a name for your account doesn't intrinsically identify your identity or allow transaction linking any more than reusing a regular account does. If some hacker sends you IAmEvilHacker.eth, that doesn't tell you anything about the hacker. On the other hand, if you ask a donation to someone, they know it's your address whether you give them ENS name or Eth address.

So our advice for people who wants to preserve privacy is as follows.

  • Don't keep too many assets in the Ethereum address tied into your ENS name.
  • When you transfer assets from/to ENS name, use other privacy-preserving tools such as Tornado Cash.

THANKS!

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CRYPTO.eth sold for 60 Eth!

Another record sale for EnsDomains! 

For those not familiar, ENS is the Ethereum Name Service, a distributed, open, and extensible naming system based on the Ethereum blockchain.

ENS’s job is to map human-readable names like ‘nifties.eth’ to machine-readable identifiers such as Ethereum addresses, content hashes, and metadata. ENS also supports ‘reverse resolution’, making it possible to associate metadata such as canonical names or interface descriptions with Ethereum addresses.

Because of the hierarchal nature of ENS, anyone who owns a domain at any level may configure subdomains - for themselves or others - as desired. For instance, if we own 'nifties.eth', we can create 'pay.nifties.eth' and configure it as we wish.

So basically ENS eliminates the need to copy or type long addresses. With ENS, you are able to send money to your friend at 'nifties.eth' instead of '0x3dbe68s50270...', interact with your favorite contract at 'mycontract.eth', or visit a Swarm-hosted site at 'swarmsite.eth'.

We picked up a list of the most interesting domains for sale that might have a big return in the future:

PERSONAL NAMES

alexia.eth nouriel.eth phill.eth 

SMOKING

cbdshop.eth hemp.eth canna.eth 

LOCATIONS

dubai.eth neom.eth home.eth

MEDICAMENTS

viagra.eth cialis.eth xanax.eth

XXX

sexy.eth xrated.eth porn.eth

NUMBERS

777.eth 696969.eth 67890.eth 

FAMOUS QUOTES:

pecunianonolet.eth maytheforcebewithyou.eth simsalabim.eth

THE FUNNIEST 

nomoneynohoney.eth