Ethereum developers are leveraging blockchain’s censorship-resistant nature to launch the next iteration of the internet, Web 3.0.
Last weekend at ETHDenver – one of the conference circuit’s top gatherings of ethereum coders – decentralized internet alternatives were on display, including Ethereum Name Service (ENS), Unstoppable Domains and UniLogin.
Launched in 2017 and 2018, respectively, ENS and Unstoppable Domains are confronting the hierarchical nature of the internet stack and the Domain Name System (DNS) by building out a peer-to-peer (P2P) internet alternative. Meanwhile, UniLogin provides a portal to Web 3.0 projects such as ENS.
The current internet architecture is controlled by select bodies including non-profit groups, businesses, universities and world governments. Buying, naming and controlling a domain is dependent on the good will of hosting providers, said the teams.
Perhaps the best example of the perils of this dynamic is the controversial planned sale of the .org domain to a private equity firm.
Using the ethereum blockchain, this new crop of startups is helping developers get decentralized websites onto the internet without the approval of DNS authorities.
Built on ethereum, Unstoppable Domains co-founder Brad Kam told CoinDesk the product is purpose-built to protect free speech online.
Domains linked to .crypto addresses can not be taken offline by a third party, Kam said. Recent populist uprisings in Spain and Turkey, which were heavily censored online by each government, were unique motivators, he said.
“Censorship is happening. For example, the .cat registry, which was supporting Catalonian independence, was raided by the Spanish police,” Kam said. “They arrested the founders and they took down a bunch of websites, all to stop them from running independence votes.”
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