Web3 is taking over the Internet. Quite literally.
Over the past year, there's been a noticeable increase in the number of .eth (Ethereum) domains purchased — and that can only mean one thing…
Web 3 marketing is paying off. And each day that goes by, more Web2 brands are transforming into Web3 brands… And we're just getting started.
But, what does that mean for you?
Should your Brand go for a .eth domain instead of a .com domain?
If so, what are the benefits? Are you missing out on something big?
We'll answer each of these questions in this article, with the utmost level of objectivity and transparency that you deserve.
So, buckle up, grab your glasses, and pay attention — let's dissect what .eth means for you and the Internet now!
In a nutshell, a .eth domain is a Web3 domain address.
Or, as Education District further explains:
Also known as Ethereum Domains, Ethereum Name Service (or "ENS" for short ) brings human-readable names to the Ethereum ecosystem. Names in the Ethereum Name Service (ENS) look just like the familiar DNS addresses we use today, with ".eth" initially being the only top-level domain (TLD) available currently.
An Ethereum address looks like a string of mixed case letters and numbers, but behind it lies a private key so that only the owner of that private key can spend or send their ether. Contracts and other various programs each have an address too. That address is called hexadecimal (or hex). That hex is a long string of numbers and letters in mixed case that looks something like this:
But, why was .eth invented anyways?
Simple: Because Ethereum wallets, pretty much like any Internet address, were long and confusing.
Sharing your wallet could be daunting, because just one small mistake could potentially bring down an entire operation… And make your money wander around the Internet like a stray dog looking for its owner.
Nowhere to be found. And someone else may get your precious money.
That's why .eth were designed for — to minimize risk, and optimize transactions.
Like Morgan Linton says, ".eth has taken off because sharing your Ethereum wallet address is a bit like sharing an IP address, it's hard to remember and a simple typo means someone literally sends money out into the ether. So to make things easier, people have wanted a way to give someone a human-readable wallet address rather than a long string of letters and numbers".
And that's the long and short of it: Optimization, transparency, and of course, simplicity — all in one simple address that could even have your name on it.
Simply put, because .eth is the next step in the natural course of the Internet's evolution. It's the Blockchain technology in motion — a transformative journey from Web2 to Web3, filling the blanks that the orphan Web2 left behind.
But, enough with the poetry — let's get into some verifiable facts.
Like Brandit says:
"...there is currently no "authority" where IP right holders can claim their rights to "retrieve" the address. Unlike DNS domains, for instance, blockchain-based web domains are not governed by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), and are therefore not subject to its procedures, such as the Uniform Domain-Name Dispute-Resolution Policy."
That said, Web3 addresses like .eth provide the user with a level of decentralization that a .com (Web2) address cannot.
Sure — there are still ways to identify an address holder, but not quite. That's because Ethereum is, in nature, anonymous. So odds are that search results would only return a pseudonym rather than the actual name of the domain holder.
But it's not all laughs and smiles here. There's still ground to cover.
Following up with Brandit's point:
"First of all, the very decentralized nature of blockchain-based "addresses" means that anyone can register an "address" composed by "brand.eth". This could cause confusion among internet users.
There is a significant risk that the owner of such "addresses" claims to be the actual Brand and either sells the Brand's "address" and/or enters into financial transactions, allegedly on behalf of the Brand. This is particularly noteworthy in light of the growing number of brands that are beginning to embrace crypto as a form of payment for their goods/services. Even though there is a lot of press commenting on such behaviors at the moment, this doesn't necessarily mean that cryptocurrency "address" holders won't be duped into believing otherwise."
Which means… Confusion for Internet users, and a lot of work for Web3 marketing, in general, to cool the waters in that sense.
As things stand today, there's the main use most Web3 brands give to .eth addresses:
Linking their domain with their wallets and dApps, to show it as a username.
In fact, as said earlier in this same article, you can send and receive cryptocurrency (not only Ethereum, you can also link your Bitcoin, Dogecoin, Matic, and so on) using this short link instead of a risky-long, 42-character string.
It's easy to set up, and MetaMask allows you to send tokens by typing your receiver's domain name.
Oh — but there's more…
You can also link your current Web2 website to this domain name, and use regular browsers such as Opera to visit .eth domains.
But a natural question arises…
Glad you asked. You're the future of Web3, pal.
You see, the setup process is fairly simple. First thing you gotta do is visit https://ens.domains.
Second, you'll see a button that says 'Go to app' at the top right corner. Click on it.
It'll take you to the next step: connecting your MetaMask wallet to the app. It'll also ask you to confirm your new connection, which you'll want to accept.
Third step… Is finding your new address. You can quickly type some words like your name, or your Brand's name, and if you're lucky enough — it'll be there, open for you to register.
Finally, ENS Domains will show up the cost for yearly domain ownership — which are usually very affordable.
Now… Voilà! You're a new .eth address owner.
And in case you were wondering…
Brands are hopping on the .eth train too.
For instance, Puma officially changed their Twitter name to Puma.eth last February following their ENS Domain purchase.
And if that doesn't say something about Web3 marketing becoming something big…
You know the rest.
That's right. That's why Spark + Mint is here!
See, we share breaking news on Crypto, Web3, .eth, and everything Blockchain in our Newsletter. It's a weekly release with all the facts, do's, don'ts, and interesting facts that every Web3 enthusiast needs to know about.
And we'd love to see you there.
All you need to do is subscribe — and you're all set.
Of course, if you have any questions, just reach out! Our team will get back to you ASAP.
And that's all for today!
Thanks for reading, and see you next time.
- The Spark + Mint Team