Hard-core techies find the mere existence of blockchain tech exciting. But mainstream adoption rides on the launch of solid use cases that have real-world application.
district0x is a blockchain startup that’s already in the game.
Districts, Districts Everywhere
district0x is building a solid reputation as a company that delivers on its promises. They’re developing a series of decentralized marketplaces on the District network.
Their first marketplace, Ethlance, was launched in January 2017. The site is a blockchain-powered job board market, linking freelancers and employers. Payment is made exclusively in cryptocurrency, and there’s a 0 percent service fee. Yes, it’s free.
Introducing Name Bazaar
Now, district0x just launched their second district, and it’s just as cool.
After hosting an ‘ENS Name HODLer’ competition for initial site population, Name Bazaar now brings Ethereum domain trading to your doorstep. The site is a peer-to-peer marketplace for ENS domains bought via the Ethereum Name Server (ENS).
ENS and .eth
Before we look at why this is good news, it’s important to understand the purpose of ENS, and why we should care.
The purpose of securing a .eth address is to forego the randomly strung numbers and letters that usually make up an ether address (i.e. 0xFBb1b73C4f0BDa4f67dcA266ce6Ef42f520fBB98), in favor of a more human-friendly address (in the case of Bittrex’ address used here, think bittrex.eth).
In true blockchain fashion, securing a name isn’t as traditional as visiting your favorite bookmarked DNS provider, checking if your chosen name is available, then parting with your credit card details. (Note: The .eth address is not a top-level domain. Top-level domains are under the exclusive management of ICANN.)
If you’ve been feeling nostalgic for your bidding days on eBay, you’re in luck. ENS prompts you to secure your name (a minimum of 7 characters) via an auction process that is mediated by the blockchain. And paid for in ether, naturally.
Why Do You Need a .eth Address?
Because it beats taking five minutes to wow someone with your Alta Bravo Charlie’s, and risk getting it wrong, anyway. Not that you’re spending too much time giving out your address over the phone, but better safe than spelling.
Humanizing cryptographic addresses go a long way towards encouraging more widespread mainstream adoption of cryptocurrencies. While developers are all too happy to use an address straight out of a math handbook, average users are prone to overwhelm when looking at their complicated hexadecimal wallet address leads to post-traumatic flashbacks of that exam paper that got the better of them.
What Name Bazaar Offers
Of course, securing a name doesn’t mean you’d like to keep it indefinitely. And ENS currently provides no mechanism for resale once you decide to get rid of your chosen address name.
A peer-to-peer marketplace like Name Bazaar is where your unwanted name becomes someone else’s new wallet address. Name Bazaar, similar to ENS, utilizes an auction-driven name registrant service.
Naturally, a service like ENS also opens up the ability for opportunists to step in and make a quick buck. Omise‘s OmiseGO.eth is up for auction starting at 2,500 eth (US$745 at current trading value).
Overall, Name Bazaar is designed to simplify and streamline the .eth address buying and selling process. While the site is already live, the developers are not done yet. Premium placements and featured listing services are on the way, as is batch offering creation tools, while troubleshooting is ongoing.