Dormant Domains

I want to create some awareness around dormant domains and fish out what you as the community think would be the best approach moving forward.

As you know, we do not charge any renewal fees for domain names - once you own one it is completely yours. However, this brings to light a slight issue; domain names belonging to lost addresses.

For example, Bob bought a domain name a year ago, lost his seed phrase in the meantime, and now that domain name is lost forever. Or at least with the current approach, we are taking.

In the longer term, these dormant domains could accumulate across multiple lost addresses and then we’d sit with unusable domain names all over the ecosystem.

Do you see what I am getting to here? I think we should strategize together. I want to hear your thoughts on this, how you think we should approach it, or if we should even approach it at all.


This is definitely a touchy subject. How do you balance domains never being used with the fact the system was designed to be expiration free. Not sure this should be visited just yet. As we are approaching just the first full year of .sol maybe it’s something we can look at in the future?

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I can’t believe the team is trying to change ownership again. It does not help you or the project in any way shape or form. And it is against the blockchain spirit. Whoever made the purchase, it is a done deal. If the project did not account for this and could not afford many “lost” domains, then start charging a recurring fee but only for new domains registered afterwards, not before. Those domains names should be grandfathered in.

How do you even define “lost”? 1 year no transaction or 2 years or 5 years? What if they just did not do transactions? Or you going to “recover” self reported lost account? How do you verify it? How many manhours you can put in dealing with this if there are 1000 requests?

There are at least 1millon Bitcoin “lost” the same way. Did the bitcoin developers think about “recycle” them by changing the code? They would laugh at you. Do you realize how ridiculous this sound now?

Do not do this, period. You are trying to play God and it never ends well. Just let it be. This is blockchain/ web3. If you want control, try it in web2.

If you guys could stop thinking in web2 mindset and devote your brain powers to growth, there is a narrow chance you could scale 10% like ENS. Have your check their numbers? The gap is widening day by day when you are thinking about nonsense like this. smh

I want to make one thing clear; we are definitely not trying to impose anything on the community. This may have been misinterpreted, to the fault of some ambiguity in my post, I do not want anyone to get upset or feel challenged. This was merely a conversation starter.

Nothing will be initiated without community consent, of course! I do, however, think that it is worth raising this topic so we can start gearing our thought process for a solution in the longer-term.

I want to start collecting your thoughts, questions being asked and concerns being raised as the foundational building blocks. If you do not want to raise these in a public space, my DMs are always open.

Thank you to those that have participated in the conversation thus far, it is much appreciated. I am not closing this conversation as I am happy to hear more.

There is no ambiguity whatsoever. And I will make it crystal clear for you, Selene. This is not the conversation you, the project team should ever have with your users/customers/investors, period. Money changed hands. It’s a done deal. You got the money. Now you try to redistribute the domain? Even if it is in good will, it is wrong.

If access to an address is lost, all tokens in that address are not spendable. If I also lost some sol in the same account and complain to the solana team, would they reimburse me or would they laugh at me? Would they start the conversation to “redistribute the lost sol in some accounts”? What makes Bonfida Domain Name so special that you think you could change that?

Again, I repeat, these are the core principles of blockchain/web3. It has nothing to do with what the “community consent” is. One owns the domain, and that ownership is not up for vote/discussion by the “community”. That is communism. Would you allow other people to decide if your house should be yours?

Humans never learn. Around last October, bonfida was on good momentum and was on the verge of breaking 100k registration and the gap between bonfida and ens was significantly smaller (ens had about 400k-500k) registration. And the bonfida handle in the official discord tried to casually do something similar you just proposed, “change ownership by the consensus of the community for fairness” because some people are “hoarding” domain names. I don’t need to tell you how that ended and how much backlash you got from it. And try to plot the charts bonfida v.s. ens numbers and see for yourself. You spook a lot of people back then and now you are at it again.

You work for a web3 project and are expected to behave like a web3 professional. This is not Instagram or Youtube where you get to ban/delete/decide what happens to user accounts. Any intervention from the project team to “change ownership” is very amateur and should not be brought up, period. Because it is principally wrong and logistically impossible as I just showed you. You cannot even handle an auction every 3-6 hours how can you handle the thousands if not more cry babies asking for your help with their lost accounts? Once you open that pandora box, all sorts of unintended consequences will follow and eventually drive the project to the ground. You keep doing this and all the web3 natives cannot take you seriously and will run away.

Again, focus on growth and ask why the gap between ens and bonfida is widening every day. That should be your priority.

I think there is a collective missunderstanding on bonfida, they are an organization that provides a “service” and is subject to some rules, it’s not a protocol that functions without dependency of other entities. They have a DAO that aims to govern the operations of the service but is still a centralized organization and they have the power for better or for worse, that service as far as i know freeze the domains of an individual implicated in a bug exploit and technically they can take away any domain from you, specially if they get pressure from another organization or institution with higher power. I don’t know if that’s also the case of ENS but another crypto domain provider (AVAX an ETH virtual machine chain) has stated that they will serve disputes for domains that resembles ICANN policies:

Jose, I ask you the same question I asked Selene.

If you lost your account containing the domain names and some coins/tokens/nfts. Tell me one web3 dev team that will reimburse your coins/tokens/nfts? What makes Bonfiida so special that they can play God and “right the wrong”? If they treat their project like a web2 database with central control instead of a web3 immutable permissionless protocol, the market will give Bonfida the valuation it so deserve sooner or later.

You, as an investor/speculator/ early adopter, will be financially punished if you think their behavior is OK. It is in your best interest too to ask them to stop the nonsense when you spot them. Every time I think of buying some domains, I have flashbacks of what they’ve done in the past and I am just shaking my head and hesitate.

Funny you mentioned Bonfida’s confiscation of that poor man’s account containing all his domain names when all he did is that he found a bug where he can click the claim button to get rewards. So he just kept clicking. When Bonfida took away all his domains that are supposedly on chain, that is a wake up call for all web3 natives.

Not sure what you expect ranting bonfida. The fact is they are a centralized service, they are not onchain and actually the service were up the last time Solana went down. If you want bonfida to pretend they are decentralized then you are fooling yourself. I wish too bonfida were a decentralized protocol but politicizing their operations doen’t change that fact. I see bonfida as a useful service that functions on a decentralized chain, if you don’t see the value or you think it’s flawed may be you should consider using an alternative.

1 I am not ranting. I am providing feedback. Criticism is monumental to progress than cheerleading. I take the same approach not just on Bonfida but also on myself. You as well as Selene or anybody else are welcome to provide a counter argument to prove me wrong. But you can’t, can you? All you can come up with is “If you don’t like it, use another one.” That’s really lame and is not helping the project either.

2 You said Bonfida is on Solana but they are not onchain? Well, Solana is a chain.

3 Do I need to remind you how Bonfida’s ad claims itself to be "immutable and unstoppable, censorship resistant and user controlled? You are not doing them a service by claiming Bonfida is centralized. I attached a copy for your bad memory.

4 If it were not for guys like me, your account might have been recognized as “hoarding” and have been confiscated already because the team was exactly planning that in discord last Oct/Nov as I just mentioned.

5 You apparently don’t know how transactions are done when you say “actually the (Bonfida) service were up the last time Solana went down”. Yeah, the Bonfida UI is up but in order for you to transact, it has to be done on Solana. If your transaction went through, that is because Solana was up at that exact moment for the transaction to be propagated on chain successfully.

Jose, none of what you said made any sense. Please come up with some better arguments.

  1. I agree with you that decentralization and sensorship resistant is important. I said you could consider an alternative because i belive is extremely difficult to change the complete structure in what is built bonfida, if you think you could reestructure it from the ground up go ahead and use your activism to try, i could not even convinced them to change their pricing model for a subset of their domains, that’s why i’m not optimistic that what you are suggesting is feasible.

  2. What i meant to say is that Bonfida provide a service to Solana chain, i used the wrong words. Bonfida is independent of solana, while the chain was down bonfida was still able to resolve domains, this is a thing i noticed the last time this occured.

  3. Im not pretending to do them a service, i’m just trying to be realistic, it would be delusional to pretend bonfida is decentralized and just trust they would do the right thing with just social pressure.

  4. Appreciate that you and anyone rise their voice to defend basic rights like the one you are mentioning, i wish i had more support for my proposals.

  5. Again, i’m sure bonfida was up because i successfully resolved some domains not in their website but in my wallet, if solana goes down again in the future you could try this and prove what i’m saying.

I have some domains that need to be claimed, and may be over 6 months, I’ve been waiting for the bulk claim feature.


  1. Is bulk claim available?
  2. Will those domains have been confiscated or will it be okay to claim them now? They’re not in the list of domains that were re-auctioned.


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The “Claim All” button should be working. It’s under the “Offers” tab in your profile. In the “Bids” section. I have found that I need to click it and let it run. Then click again a few times if there are a lot of domains.

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Thanks! I found it. Took a good while to generate the transaction, but seems impossible to accept, perhaps due to the large number of domains. I’ll keep trying. Appreciate your help.


Yeah. I think that needs to be looked at. I try to do a regular single claim in some to get the numbers down first sometimes. There is a long period for the transaction confirmation to pop up. Then it can time out. Maybe there is a way to improve it.


I was thinking to do it directly via contract, but haven’t looked into it, UX solution would be ideal. Maybe batching them into a maximum number per transaction would reduce the time to generate the transaction and/or decrease the failure rate of approvals. @Selene

EDIT: allowing user to select domains might be optimal:

  • select all
  • select 10, 50, 100, etc
  • manually select domains…