Update: February 26th, 2021. As of last night and confirmed this morning, all pre-sale domains have been renewed as you can see here: https://fio.bloks.io/account/mnkfejurehui Email communication and blog post about this will be created soon.
Update: January 27th, 2021. It looks like we’re going to proceed forward with option 1B described below. Please see this comment for details.
The FIO Protocol only exists as the sum of the community who believe in and support its vision to make crypto products easier so everyone can use them. During the early stages of the project, prior to the mainnet launch, many supporters of FIO participated in a pre-sale auction of domains create by Dapix. Upon mainnet launch on 3/24/2020, the first year clock started for when these domains would need to be renewed, costing around $40 USD in FIO token fees (as of this writing it’s 555.033612617 FIO for per renew_fio_domain call). According to the data on the knowledge base, there were 1976 domains registered as part of mainnet launch, if you exclude everything pre-reserved by the foundation on the community treasury multisig account: FIO7WUm6fWGeqHeP9DPriPemdtY1eWZRG9VAhDEWuEX46whAQYLA6
Over the past 9 months or so, the community of presale participants have been discussing the desire to have the Foundation renew their domains purchased during the presale for another year. That would cost about $79,040 worth of FIO tokens.
Why should the Foundation consider this?
Though there are projects underway to wrap FIO tokens and domains on Ethereum and make them available to NFT market places like Open Sea and there are community members working on a FIO native domain market place (you can join the Telegram here), the process takes time and currently has no guaranteed deliver date. Some in the community purchased domains for speculative purposes, hoping to resell them quickly for profit. While some may not see the value in domain speculation, others argue it is a core value proposition for the FIO Protocol and, not unlike the early internet days, drives innovation by bringing excitement, attention, and demand to the project. Without a marketplace to buy and sell FIO domains, the expectations of presales investors have not yet been met. Initially, custom domains were not supported in any of the FIO integrated wallets until June 2020 when Edge Wallet added support, 3 months after mainnet launch. The ability to transfer domains was added in FIO contracts release v2.1.0 in October 2020 (7 months after mainnet launch). While some cryptocurrency projects go years making promises and not delivering anything useful, the FIO Protocol proudly delivers very complex solutions quickly.
It’s important that everyone who adds value to the FIO Protocol is compensated for their efforts. This especially includes those who believed in FIO in the early days before mainnet launch and were willing to put capital at risk to support the project.
Why shouldn’t the Foundation consider this (or put limits on it)?
There are some who do not feel domain squatting is a valuable activity for the FIO Protocol. The presale auction enabled companies and individuals to obtain the domains they want for their own personal use, but also enabled squatters to buy up domains they only intend to resell (the 1,976 domains are owned by only 163 accounts and one single account, as an example, owns 393 different domains). Renewing all of these domains would benefit a small number of people while introducing more liquid tokens in the market that wouldn’t otherwise be liquid. It also removes the potential FIO token buying pressure that might otherwise exist as domain holders purchase FIO to renew their domains another year. In addition, some accounts may be dormant, meaning they are no longer involved with FIO and have forgotten about their domains and have no intention to use them, even if they were renewed for free. In these specific cases, it would not only be a waste of funds, but also lock up a potentially valuable domain for another year that someone else may have a use for.
Renewing all domains may benefit a small group of people at a (perceived or otherwise) cost to everyone else.
What compromises, if any, should we consider? What’s the path forward?
I think I can safely say, on behalf of the Foundation, it does make sense for us to do something to compensate and thank those who have supported FIO from the beginning. What that looks like exactly should be decided together as a community. There are different stake holders involved and all valid viewpoints should be considered.
Here are some paths forward:
The Foundation pays for renewing all 1976 domains. Benefits include a happy presales community and more tokens put into block production rewards to continue securing the network.
Using liquid funds of the community treasury OR
Using some of the 125M tokens set aside for free address giveaways that the foundation multisig has control over.
The Foundation pays for renewing some of the 1976 domains. Benefits include not wasting tokens on accounts that won’t benefit the network.
We could analyze on-chain activity and only renew domains for accounts which have shown some activity since mainnet launch. This would include any activity at all such as a token transfer or FIO address registration. Anything after the March 24th launch date.
We could put up a registration form where users could request to have their domain renewed using some type of signature proof.
The downsides of this include having to build out the infrastructure to support this, dev time, testing, and more.
We limit the number of domains per account the foundation will renew.
The average number of domains owned across the 136 accounts is 12.
The mean number of domains owned across the 136 accounts is 2.
We could make a decision to renew only up to 52 domains (next highest being 73) which would cover all presale domains for every account except 5 accounts. This would decrease the number of domains to renew to 964 costing only $38,560, saving the Foundation $40,480.
My current thinking is to go with 1b and renew them all using FIO Address Giveaway tokens as this is, in a sense, a FIO name giveaway to pre-sales domain holders. Pre-sales addresses would still have to be renewed manually. My second choice would be 2a which prevents and frees up domains others might find valuable.
Can you think of other Pros and Cons for renewing presale domains?
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