The only individual who can renew Web3 DNS’s domain name is currently behind bars, which means the service may go down.
The eth.link website for the ENS DAO is now inaccessible, showing just a green domain expiration notification banner above a blank page.
Its because Virgil Griffith, the only person with the capacity to renew the name, is serving a 63-month jail term for assisting North Koreans in using bitcoins to circumvent sanctions and has been unable to renew the domain from prison. As a result, the Web3 DNS may soon no longer have a working URL.
GoDaddy announced late on Friday that the domain name eth.link had expired on July 26 and would be made available to anyone who want to register it again beginning September 5.
The ENS DAO is a decentralised autonomous organization (DAO) (DAO). For example, it regulates the Ethereum Name Service Protocol, which is the Web3 equivalent of a traditional DNS provider. The ENS protocol is the foundation of the many.eth domains that have recently emerged in the Ethereum ecosystem. Users have purchased.eth domain names in order to own their own domains.
If users’ ENS IDs can be associated with their wallet addresses, sending and receiving cryptocurrencies becomes much simpler (instead of having to type out a long, complex Ethereum address).
When ENS first began, Virgil Griffith was working for the Ethereum Foundation, and as such, he was an early contributor to the ENS protocol, as stated by Khori Whittaker, ENS’s Executive Director. Due to the open nature of the ENS protocol, Virgil was able to utilize it to create the eth.link decentralized application. He bought the domain name and coded a program to handle ENS domains.
The DAO utilized eth.link to collect data on all ENS names. Previously, ENS DAO recommended that its users check out eth.limo.
According to a message posted to the ENS DAO Twitter account, CEO of EasyDNS Mark Jeftovic allegedly agreed to renew the domain address for another year, but then the domain provider “suddenly” and “without warning” stopped fulfilling the deal.
Whittaker told CoinDesk that this incident demonstrated the necessity of decentralized name systems. “After eth.link was renewed, GoDaddy opted to ‘re-expire’ the domain, exposing the power and influence that this archaic name scheme wields. But anyone can renew or extend an ENS domain at their own expense.
Rapid expansion over the past 12 months has led to ENS’s recent milestone, the August 17th crossing of the 2 million domain registration mark. Five years went by before ENS registered a million names, but the next two million were added in only three and a half months.