Officially, I am now jeffo.sol.
One of the annoyances of crypto has always been wallet addresses that typically look like this:
Those long, alphanumeric strings are a pain in the rumpus because you have to make sure all the letters and numbers are correct. Get a single number or letter wrong and you can send your crypto to the wrong address with no hope of retrieving it.
That’s changing. Now, crypto wallets are as easy as jeffo.sol.
In the last year or so, several naming services have popped up that allow you to create internet domains that a) last forever with no renewal fees, and b) serve as a crypto wallet address as well.
And, well, I guess there is a C) too—your website/address cannot be censored or shut down or taken away from you. (I lost JeffOpdyke.com to some Chinese company/person that trolls the internet just waiting for someone to miss their renewal payment so they can extort you.)
With these new services, you pay once and you own it forever.
My cost for jeffo.sol was $22, the minimum amount necessary to launch what is ultimately a bidding process for names. Someone could have come along who also wanted jeffo.sol, as well, and outbid me, or forced me to raise my bid much higher.
This wallet address is for the Solana cryptocurrency network, so I can’t send my bitcoin or Ethereum to jeffo.sol, only Solana tokens and others that are compatible with Solana.
The Solana network is still young (though growing like a weed), and we are still quite early in the .sol naming game. Thus, there aren’t a ton of people bidding just yet, except those who are speculating on really popular names and concepts.
Over at Ethereum Naming Services, there’s much more competition, and the cost is radically higher because of what are known as “gas fees,” or the transaction price. The name I want there (jeffo.eth is taken) is just 0.001 Ethereum, or about $5.
But the gas fees are 0.032 Ethereum, or $133!
Ain’t nobody got time for that nonsense. I will wait for the Ethereum 2.0 updates to roll out next year, when gas fees all but vanish.
Here’s why I like this idea of a simple-to-remember wallet, and why I am pretty confident this will be our future (which is why I want my wallet now, before it’s so popular all the good, short, simple names are taken).
Right now, my son and I send crypto back and forth to each other as we’re taking part in various Solana projects. When he wants to send crypto to me, he doesn’t have to send me a chat that says, “Hey, Dad, what’s your wallet address, again?” And I don’t have to go open my wallet and copy/paste the address and send it to him.
He knows I am jeffo.sol. Simple.
He knows that all he has to do is type that name in the “address field” when he is sending from his wallet, and the crypto he sends (as long as it’s on the Solana network) will pop up in seconds in my wallet.
He and I are part of the early-adopter crowd, but think this through for a moment and you can see the longer-term utility. It’s how we will all get paid in the future.
You will just post your .sol or .eth or .whatever address and the person or organization paying you—even your traditional employer—will pop that into an address field, and your money will land in your wallet when it’s supposed to.
Or imagine you put your .sol or .eth address on your tax return…or maybe your .usd address (which could very well be the address for U.S. dollar wallets when Uncle Sam goes digital and unveils a digi-dollar based on the same tech as cryptos. By the way, I own the name digidollars.crypto, as well as a bunch of other currency-related names at one of the other naming services that exist).
It’s going to be incredibly easy at that point to send money here, there, and anywhere. It’s going to be incredibly easy to get paid. No more digging out bank routing numbers and your bank account number. You just notate something like jeffo.sol and your money lands in the right spot.
And there’s even a potential upside.
Just recently Ethereum Naming Service airdropped a bundle of tokens into the accounts of early adopters. (Airdrops are promotional events in which crypto tokens are given out for free.) At the low end, those who bought a .eth name received 200 ENS tokens; at the high end it was 1,000 tokens.
As I write this, ENS trades for about $46, meaning that airdrop was a surprise payday of between $9,200 and $46,000 for .eth buyers.
Will the firm behind .sol have an airdrop as well at some point? No idea. But it if does—great.
In the meantime, I have a very simple address I can use to receive Solana-based crypto, which is the primary reason I grabbed jeffo.sol.
If you’re interested in your own .sol address, head over to naming.bonfida.org. You will need to have a crypto wallet installed on your browser that works with Solana. I use Phantom Wallet, though there are others. They’re free to download and use.
Once your wallet is connected to Bonfida.org, just insert into the search bar the name you want to register, and follow the prompts. If your name is common, like, say, James Brown, well you should expect to find it’s gone. So, you’ll need to come up with something more unique.
After six days of auction, the name is yours—unless someone swoops in and grabs it. They probably won’t, since the competition is for popular names/concepts that can be resold for bigger bucks.
I watched the bidding end recently for Democracy.sol. Someone paid 146 SOL, or about $32,100.
Pretty sure jeffo.sol will never fetch that amount…