Pavel Durov, founder of encrypted messaging app Telegram, has floated the idea of a marketplace that could use “NFT-like smart contracts” to auction off highly sought-after usernames.

Durov made the proposal after the “success” of domain name auctions by the Open Network (TON), a layer-one blockchain originally designed by the Telegram team. The blockchain project launched the TON DNS service, allowing users to assign human-readable names to crypto wallets, smart contracts, and websites, in mid-July.

In a message to his personal Telegram group called Durov’s Channel on Tuesday, he noted that he was “really impressed with the success of TON’s recent auction of domain/wallet names.”

“Imagine how successful Telegram would be with 700 million users if we put reserved usernames, group and channel links up for auction,” he said.

Dorov suggested that Telegram could leverage similar technology to roll out a new marketplace that could be used to buy and sell “catchy addresses like @storm or @royal, all four-letter usernames:”

“This will create a new platform where username holders can pass them on to interested parties in protected transactions – while securing ownership on the blockchain via NFT-like smart contracts.”
“Other elements of the Telegram ecosystem, including channels, stickers or emojis, could become part of this market later,” he added.

The first auctions on TON DNS were launched on July 30, and like “.eth” domains for the Ethereum Name Service (ENS), the “.ton” variant allows users to access decentralized applications in a simple way without having to type a long string of letters and numbers from their wallet addresses. .

The TON Network uses the FunC programming language for the TON Virtual Machine and for launching specific smart contracts on the blockchain. If Telegram were to launch NFTs, it would most likely be based on this standard.

A similar integration would likely be too simple for Telegram, since Durov and his team developed TON, formerly Telegram Open Network, alongside the messaging app in 2018.

“Our team can write bulletproof smart contracts for TON (since we invented the smart contract language), so we are inclined to try TON as the primary blockchain for our futures market,” he wrote.

TON was initially developed to serve as a digital payments platform for Telegram. However, it immediately ran into trouble with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) regarding an unrecorded initial sale of $1.7 billion in Gram tokens.

Source: CoinTelegraph