FIO Addresses consist of a username and a domain. While having a FIO Address is necessary to use the FIO Protocol, users do not need to own their own FIO Domain. By default, many applications (especially wallets and exchanges) will have a domain available as a default for their users. For example, the mobile wallet, Edge Wallet, might have @edgewallet domain as a default for their users. Users which desire their own unique FIO domain may register one that is available as a non-fungible token that they control and own.
Outside of centralized services (which own all user private keys, including FIO Addresses), users are not obligated to use a specific domain for their FIO Address, regardless of the wallet they choose to use.
A domain owner has several unique actions that are specific towards their management of a domain and any subsequent registrations of FIO Addresses.
- Public/Private Flag – by default, a FIO Address Domain can only be used for a FIO Address registration from the domain owner themselves. If chosen, the domain owner can change their domain to public, which would allow anyone with a FIO private key to register a FIO Address on their domain. This functionality is inherent to the mechanics of the FIO Protocol – though whether a particular wallet provides that option through their UI may differ.
- Expire Domain – a FIO Domain owner has the ability, at their discretion, to expire their domain. When they do, the domain enters expired state.
Importantly – a domain owner is NOT able to control FIO Addresses on their domain, decrypt any data associated with transactions made by any registered FIO Address on their domain, nor are they able to change the fee structure of FIO Address registration/renewal, as that is dictated by the block producers (this is separate from running a registration site, which allows for various other economic choices).
All FIO Domains are non-fungible tokens, which means they can be freely transferred between accounts, users, and wallets as with any other cryptoasset.
Selling a FIO Domain may involve the use of a built-in escrow smart contract, in which both the domain owner and the buyer deposits their respective NFT and payment before transfer of the domain to the new owner is executed.
It is anticipated that secondary marketplaces for domain listings will be developed by the community.
A number of projects are underway with the goal of creating a decentralized domain name space system for the World Wide Web. Should any of those projects become recognized in the community as the primary decentralized domain space, then the Foundation’s vision is that the FIO Protocol will hopefully endeavor to work collaboratively with them although such a decision will be up to the protocol Block Producers. Specifically, FIO domains do not currently have the concept of a Top Level Domain (e.g., .com, .org, .net, .io) but such a construct could be added in the future to the notion of a FIO address and a unique TLD for FIO Addresses registered for the FIO Protocol enabling FIO Addresses to work seamlessly with a decentralized domain name space.