The Blockchain revolution is moving at a faster pace than many people understand. Early adopters and successful investors of the past refer to this time as the second .Com era or Web 3.0. The same way that the .Coms, .Orgs, and other suffixes have been commodities over the past decade, and crypto domains have become the sought-after asset. Rightfully so, Blockchain technologies deliver a new wave of technologies with scalability and security built-in, simultaneously having potential solid use cases in many sectors. Here we’ll take a quick look at why you would want a Blockchain Domain and why you should secure your legacy Domain name on the Blockchain.
If you have ever been searched for a domain name in the recent past, you probably found that it was straight forward processed initially. Especially if the domain name you were looking for was readily available, if the name you are interested in is claimed, it probably is available for use or being resold at a premium price. Typically, the shorter, more easily used Domains are rarely available. Since those were bought some time ago by savvy investors who knew these digital assets could significantly value the line. Having an easily recognizable domain promotes a brand’s value and instills integrity that users are on the correct site. Additionally, companies need to protect and maintain their Domains while keeping good standing the hosting services that keep custody of their domains. All that said, we occasionally hear about companies that let the Domain renewal process slip by for a short amount of time (even a few hours), and someone comes by snaps up a high-value domain in hopes to leverage a resell situation at a premium price.
With the accelerated adoption of Blockchain and Cryptocurrencies, many corporate entities and even individuals are looking at Crypto Assets to store value. Those folks that have been in the space for some time know that transacting crypto can sometimes be a tricky task and that in the next few years, we’ll need to make payment options more flexible to send and receive cryptos. Experienced crypto users will probably agree that leveraging cryptos as a form of payment definitely improved the past couple of years but still has room for improvement and since errors here can be costly. Unlike in the past ways, having Credit card transactions declined and like putting in the wrong security pins will decline a transaction. Using the wrong address to send your cryptos could result in losing those cryptos being sent forever. Even with the difficulties with transacting cryptos currently, when you understand what’s happening under the hood of each transaction, it becomes easy to understand the security measures built-in and repudiation of each send or receive.
In the long term, Blockchain domains set out to help alleviate the payment issues and help with a few other potential issues traditional Domains have. First, blockchain domains help simply the need for memorizing or using the wrong address type. Here is an example of a 42-character address (ETH receive address — 0xC617DfadCD23F89d277518b7967b1C9E4182C3eF) with Blockchain domain built on the Ethereum network. It can be shortened down to something recognizable and easily typed in. (atillman.crypto) My .crypto blockchain domain can also be used linked to other cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin (BTC) to reduce further the complexity of sending and receive different cryptos. A traditional website with DNS can be linked to blockchain domains to help route your users to the correct pages and potentially help keep past infrastructure still in place. Unlike traditional domains that operate on a centralized model where Domain Hosting providers help to facilitation DNS or certificates, .crypto names are held by their owners in a cryptocurrency wallet just like their other digital assets.
Not only do blockchain domains simplify crypto payment operations it also helps with a few other issues. The second issue with domains has to renew them on an annual basis; blockchain domains differ in that they are a one-time purchase for the life of your domain. Like mentioned previously, keeping up with domain name renewals is a critical path, primarily when your DNS infrastructure depends on it. Blockchain domains also help create a more decentralized internet where regulating bodies and host provider services have no affluence over your domain or site. The decentralized model also presences some concern with bad actors creating malicious blockchain sites just used to spoof other legitimate Blockchain sites. The controls in place to help verify Blockchain site’s legitimacy leverage social media and other decentralized protocol providers like Chainlink.
The current gotcha with Blockchain domains is that only the Opera Browser natively supports these sites to be view directly by entering the web address. My gut feeling here is that all of the popular browsers will natively support Blockchain sites within the following year. In the interim, a browser extension must be used to view these sites, and extensions are available for Chrome and Brave Browser. Unstoppable Domains helps procure and build blockchain domains into websites very straightforward; I found only one pinch point where high gas costs for ETH are currently unavoidable. I still found this approach to be the best bet for a simple website design and deployment since my site was up running in a matter of minutes.
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Lastly, some blockchain enthusiasts feel that blockchain domains will be a significant player in more the just cryptocurrency payment in the future. They believe this technology may even be the best approach towards leveraging social identities, similar to the approaches we currently use to login into sites. Identify Providers or (IdPs) are what we currently use for authentication into many different sites and apps by giving us a level of trust and repudiation when accessing different platforms and applications. With use cases like this in mind, it would be worth the investment to snatch up a blockchain domain that resembles their nickname, real name, or doing business as a name. In my opinion, there is more incentive for a corporate entity to obtain all the blockchain domains that mirror their preferred or recognizable name as early as possible. To ensure they are ready to accept crypto payments when the time is right, instead of paying an additional premium to buy their desire domain from an auction or private seller.