ENS regains control of the eth.link domain

Manifold Finance bought the domain for $850,000 two weeks ago

Ethereum Name Service (ENS) has regained control of the eth.link domain, according to the project Twitter account.

Nick Johnson, the founder of ENS, describes eth.link as a decentralized application (dapp) built on top of ENS that allows the Internet’s Domain Name System (DNS) to access information stored in ENS. This allows users to create websites linked to their .eth addresses that can be viewed in standard browsers.

For instance, vitalik.eth.link resolves to the blog of Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin.

The domain was returned to ENS control after a US court granted the company an injunction in its ongoing lawsuit against GoDaddy and Manifold Finance.

ethlinklawsuit

ENS sues GoDaddy and Manifold Finance over sale of eth.link

Domain sold to Manifold Finance for $852,000

“With the court’s decision and results, users can now resume using eth.link without interruption,” Johnson told The Defiant. “These events further demonstrate the value of decentralizing digital identity and the risks associated with centralized entities having full ownership of individuals’ digital property.”

“Illegal sale”

ENS sued domain name registrar and hosting company GoDaddy on September 5, alleging illegal sale of the eth.link domain name.

GoDaddy sold eth.link to Dynadot, another domain registrar, on September 3. Dynadot then auctioned the eth.link to Manifold Finance, which offers middleware-based scaling solutions for DeFi protocols.

ENS named both Dynadot and Manifold as plaintiffs in its complaint.

The collector has declared on Twitter that despite the ENS announcement, the project does not actually own eth.link. Rather, ENS has taken over control of the account that controls eth.link records, according to Manifold.

Sam Bacha, the founder of Manifold, told The Defiant that Dynadot still has control of eth.link, but ENS has control of domain name servers which can be delegated to a third party like Cloudflare.

Name servers translate domain names to IP addresses, so ENS is currently able to direct eth.link requests to the corresponding IP address.

Johnson of ENS sees the fight over eth.link as part of a larger fight over how digital property rights are established. “This is a small battle in a larger movement for decentralized ownership on the internet,” he said.

UPDATED 9/20 at 2 p.m. ET to include commentary from Sam Bacha.