June 23, 2022

An Introduction To Web3 Domains

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We have received countless enquiries about Web3 Domains, Crypto Domains and Metaverse Domains. However, all these terms reference the same technology yet there seems to be no consensus on how to refer to them and a severe lack of understanding as to how these work.

Our article series will introduce the concept of Web3 Domains (as we prefer to call them), break down the confusing terminology, practically demonstrates how the services operate and review their impact on Intellectual Property Rights.

The Hype!

Blockchain, Crypto, Metaverse, Web3 and NFTs are terms thrown around by cryptocurrency enthusiasts and technologists who have a vested interest in these “new” services, however, these technologies are currently only utilised by a niche market and have very limited applications. It is all very reminiscent of the 90s when the terms Email, Internet, WWW, Hyperlink and Browser hit our ears. Over time we began to understand the terms and the technology, with the evolution of understanding leading to regulation addressing legal, safety and security concerns.

During that period the Intellectual Property community identified potential risks and set out to protect their interests, which lead to legislation such as the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), Anti-cybersquatting Consumer Protection Act (ACPA) and the Electronic Commerce Directive 2000 and administrative processes such as the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP).

The Intellectual Property community is now “threatened” by technology that may be difficult to govern due to its decentralised structure. This has led to panic fuelled by mainstream and social media picking up on potential risks, which have been amplified by the lack of understanding of the technology and its application.

The first step to address the hype is to breakdown the terminology, digest its meaning and understand its practical application.

Web3 Jargonbuster

Researching newly coined terms and technology can be overwhelming, so we have identified the key terms that require an explanation as they are a significant part of the Web3 Domain environment.

Web3 JargonDescription
CryptocurrencyA digital currency in which transactions are verified and records maintained by a decentralized system.
NFTsAssets on a blockchain with unique identification codes that distinguish them from each other. Each NFT is represented by its own value, like art while fungible tokens (cryptocurrencies) have an equal value and can therefore serve as a form of currency.
Web3 DomainsWeb3 domains may be used as an address for websites that reside on a decentralized internet or used as a wallet address. These domains are outside of the control of any central entity, such as ICANN

Summary

Web3 domains are a popular topic right now that is creating panic within the IP community, yet whilst these domains pose a significant threat to brand owners, their risks have been amplified by a lack of understanding relating to the terminology and technological applications. Within our upcoming articles we will discuss the governance that exists within the Web3 domain space and how mainstream these domains have become. Additionally, we will look at how brands can tackle the issue with a strategic and measured approach, so be sure to keep an eye out for our next article.

To better understand the impact of Web3 domains and to begin developing your defensive strategy in this space, reach out to our brand protection team:

[email protected]