Telegram founder Pavel Durov has again proposed a new idea to auction off highly sought-after usernames, groups and channel links via NFT-like smart contracts.
According to him, a marketplace with millions of reputed usernames for sale as assets will be the next big step.
Durov came up with the concept after the “success” of The Open Network (TON) domain name auctions, a layer 1 blockchain originally built by the Telegram team, in which the Wallet.ton domain sold for 215,250 Toncoin ($260,000) and casino.ton sold for $244,000.
The blockchain network allowed users to assign human names to cryptowallets, smart contracts and websites. It uses the PoS consensus mechanism and supports staking, as well as the development of NFTs and dApps.
The TON DNS service, a blockchain initiative that allows users to provide human-readable names to cryptocurrencies, smart contracts and websites, was launched in mid-July.
In a message to his personal Telegram group called Durov’s Channel on Tuesday, he wrote that he was “really impressed by the successful auction TON recently held for its domain/wallet names.”
On his Telegram channel, “Durov’s Channel,” he said:
“Imagine how successful Telegram could be with its 700 million users if we put the reserved @usernames, group and channel links up for auction,” he continued.
Durov said Telegram could use similar technologies to launch a new marketplace to buy and sell “catchy t.me addresses like @storm or @royal, as well as all four-letter usernames:”
“This would create a new platform where holders of usernames could transfer them to interested parties in protected agreements – with ownership secured on the blockchain through smart contracts similar to NFT.” Added Durov.
“Other elements of the Telegram ecosystem, including channels, stickers or emoji, could also become part of this marketplace down the road,” he added.
It should be easy to accomplish since Durov and his team built TON, formerly known as Telegram Open Network, along with the Telegram messaging app back in 2018.
Then, Durov concludes his announcement with:
“Let’s see if we can add some Web3 to Telegram in the coming weeks.”
Initially, TON was developed as a digital payments network on Telegram. But it ran into legal battles with the SEC. At issue were preliminary unregistered sales of $1.7 billion worth of Gram tokens.
Telegram’s founder lost the case in court in 2020. After that, he is focusing more on developing and expanding Telegram’s channel.
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