Gifting names to a holding wallet until the recipient is ready - Request for feedback

Hey frENS! I’d like to get some opinions on an idea to help facilitate the gifting of ENS names to entities/organizations/businesses. ENS has been hitting huge numbers of name registrations. With that, more name speculation is happening which may have the effect of hindering adoption.

In recent spaces, many have expressed buying names for entities in hopes of donating it to them. If anyone has tried to gift a name, you’ll know it’s a little challenging if they are not ready or you cannot find the proper contacts to alert them . At the same time we don’t want to see some organization try to onboard into ENS but not able to secure a name that would fit them best.

Some time ago I grabbed kiva.eth. I’ve tried to reach them a few times, but no response. I sent it over to @validator.eth for safe keeping. He even offered to help keep it renewed so it doesn’t expire. He’s like king of ENS fairying imho.

In a recent Twitter space, @alisha.eth mentioned brainstorming an idea to have some kind of holding wallet where people could donate names to. When the entity is ready, they could come ask for it to be transferred to them. I love this idea! :heart:

I’ve been brainstorming about how this all could work. I’d like some feedback and perspectives from my frENS here that are into the ENS fairy vibe. Here’s some ways I could see it working:

  • A dedicated .eth address could be used so that anyone could send an ENS name to it for safe keeping.
  • Possibly this address could be funded to keep up with renewals. Maybe a subgroup for this with a budget?
  • The wallet could be some kind of secure multi-sig. I fear that the average crypto user is still lacking behind on security. It would be terrible if someone wanted to gift a name, and the wallet fell victim to a hack or phishing attempt. The name could be lost. Sending it to a secure “vault” type of address would work well.
  • The ENS fairy that donated the name could set social media “proof” records. This might include the website, an email, Twitter handle, or GitHub username all saved in the ENS record fields. This way the data is stored on chain. The donor would have some assurances the right entity would be able to ask in the future to be transferred to them.
  • The most exciting idea I think would be having a Twitter bot to tweet out names that were sent to the donation wallet. Like the ENS Sales bot, but for donated names. It could have a network effect so if people noticed the donated names on their feed, they could help onboard in some capacity. It could also signal that the ENS community or even wider crypto-world is desiring them to be in the space.

What do the ENS fairies out there think? Would love to hear from you all! :hugs:


This thread may also be relevant: Ability to Specify Custom Registrant and Controller at Time of ENS Name Registration

Also is this still active @AvsA? Just published Push 2 ENS! Donate anything to ANY website using ENS!


I love the idea of an “ENS name trust” or something, governed maybe even by the ENS DAO or Community Working Group multisig?

This could even be built into the registration UI perhaps?

Like when you register a name you’re always set as the Controller obviously, but for the Registrant/Owner maybe there are options like


  • I want the ENS Community Working Group to own my name for now

    • For people new to crypto and not confident enough yet in their ability to keep custody of their own private keys. You may request ownership from the Community Working Group at any time, etc…
  • I want to be the sole owner of my name

    • Sends the actual NFT to your account. Note that if your account gets compromised and the NFT is taken, there is no way to get it back. Here are some guides on self-custody, hardware wallets, etc…

I dunno, something like that. The whole “request ownership from the WG” could be the difficult part though, maybe to start with we would require that you sign a message with the original account you registered with, and it would not be an automated process, it would require manual oversight by the @Community_Stewards.

Just brainstorming


I’m understanding that anyone who wants a name to go to a specific owner would send it to multisig so that it could be claimed by the specific owner in the future.

I think the idea of requiring the name to be deliberately requested by the intended recipient after it’s been placed in the trust. Although a “register for another user” function is helpful overall, the intended recipient should chose when and where they want it to go. This prevents a name getting from being misplaced by the sender.

It would be great if someone wants to start and manage an ENS Name Trust.


@zadok7 - Awesome idea!

Difficult part yes, but what if the name’s Description text field is updated with the intended recipient at the time of gifting. I’m guessing the entity gifting the name would know specifically who it’s to be for? So, “Donated for the owner of”. That would make the claim process more straightforward.
[edit - I see that @zadok7 actually suggested this above.]

As I think through this more, some web2 companies might want to go ahead and donate to their future selves if they’re not quite ready yet or set up to be a custodian.

This is probably a fairly simple RFP to write by describing what the day to day responsibilities would be and the compensation amount. Still owned by a multisig under community though, yeah? I’d be happy to help with this part.

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Consider this scenario… Someone wants to donate WWF.eth for safe keeping. How do they specify their wishes for only the World Wild Life organization to receive the name when they are ready? (this is just an example, I have no idea who owns that name.)

How would the “ENS name trust” holding the name know that that it should go to World Wild Life? Ask the donor? What if the donor can’t be reached? They’re on vacation? They moved to Mars? How does the “vault wallet” know to transfer ownership to World Wild Life if they cannot get in contact with the donor? I’m saying that content records can be used to specify these wishes.

When the World Wild Life is ready, they’ve got to request the name be sent to their wallet. You can’t specify a wallet at the time of donation, if World Wild Life has no crypto wallet. This is the problem we’re trying to solve. I’m saying the website record or twitter handle could maybe be used for this purpose. Otherwise the Worldwide Wrestling Federation could see WWF.eth in the “donation vault” and ask it to be sent to them and confused that someone was donating to them. The issue is if the donor can’t be found to say “no I donated it for World Wild Life”. We must rely on some type of on-chain records the donor specifies at time of donation of the name to the “vault wallet.” Not sure how else to make sure the name isn’t sent to the wrong person/organization.

This is an interesting idea @5pence

As @serenae mentioned, I too am just brainstorming. I’m not quite sure how this can be done properly, or if it can be done at all. ENS name donation is definitely in the hearts of a lot of people. There are roadblocks to easily gifting the names if the wallet is not known or doesn’t existence.

Cool feedback so far everyone!

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Actually, I don’t think being responsible for renewing the names in the “donation vault” is a good idea at all. People could donate names endlessly, or maliciously just to burn up renewal fees/budgets. It could be an attack vector now that I think about it.

The original donor would have to extend it out for enough time. Also, since anyone can extend a name(not just owner), this would work well.

Still brainstorming!

Yes, the original person who registered it should be responsible for renewing. And the ENS Name Trust can automatically send out reminders. The only possible exception might be if you want to send a name to some other entity, in which case the Trust could decide case-by-case, maybe only for large public entities.

When someone registers and chooses ENS Name Trust as the owner, or when someone just wants to send their name to the Trust, this should be done via a form that captures all relevant information. Not KYC, but enough so that the Trust knows what to do with the name.

If someone is just sending it to their future self and letting the Trust safekeep it for now, then that’s a relatively simpler thing. The main thing to figure out is how that person redeems it in the future. It would include some human intervention by the managers of the Trust, and also maybe require something like signing a message with the account of the original registering/sending account.

If someone is sending a name to the Trust for some other person/entity, then all that information would need to be captured as well. Who is it for, under what circumstances, etc. Should the original sender be able to revoke their decision and take back the name for themselves at any time too (if the Trust did not already give it to the other entity)? I would say yes.

This information should all be collected when the register/send happens, not years later and then we have to track down the original sender.

Have an e-mail in the form too, so the Trust can easily contact the person through more “conventional” means. That could also serve as a bit of 2FA, so when someone redeems they have to not only sign a message, but also verify via e-mail. That way if their account was lost/compromised, that will guard somewhat against the attacker trying to request the name from the Trust.

Worst case scenario, if the person cannot sign a message or verify via e-mail or anything, then the Trust could deny transferring the Registrant, but might be more lenient on setting the Controller. So even if someone loses their account and can’t technically verify, they’ll still be able to do human verification with the managers of the Trust and at least gain Controller access. Maybe in that case the Registrant could also eventually be transferred too, but would have some minimum waiting period like 1 year or something.

I think it was @ricmoo who had a neat solution for allowing people to send assets to not-yet-registered DNS names? That would certainly be one option - just send it to their domain name and let them claim it later. Gas fees can be fairly substantial for proving ownership of the name, though.


Is that separate from the tool @AvsA created, or is this the one you mean?


Sorry, yes, that was what I was thinking of!


Something like that would be awesome! I read a little more on it, maybe it can be matured a bit so it’s really easy to use and code audited, etc. With near gasless DNS imports in future using CCIP-read, this would be totally :fire:!!!

I’m a n00b at reading smart contracts, so please forgive me. In this kind of tool, would the ENS name string for the donated ENS name be visible on chain? So if a wallet donated an ENS name to and it was “waiting for pickup” essentially, there could be a way for anyone to see wwf.eth was awaiting them on-chain? Just using wwf.eth as example again, not sure who’s this is, if it would be donated, etc.


Down for this idea… there are ton of foundations in LatAm that would appreciate this as well. When they are ready. Also reading about @AvsA PUSH2ENS… would love to learn how to use it and implement this initiative next quarter.


I love the idea of ENS Name Trust. Let’s get this off the ground. Happy to contribute to true public goodness!


Unfortunately, the gaslessness is only for read operations offchain - contracts like this would still need to process the proof onchain, so it wouldn’t be any cheaper.

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Going to add this to agenda for tomorrow’s Community WG discussion


I also just had a support ticket come in asking about this tweet:

An ENS Fairy Fund! Sounds pretty cool, and would be a great way to incentivize people away from squatting!


I have ensendowment.eth to donate to the fairy fund.


There could be confusion in some situations where there are multiple different companies using the same name.

Eg just yesterday I picked up “Bettr” which is an online doctors in NZ, but also a Neo/Challenger Bank in South Africa.

So in this case, perhaps the donator of the domain would need to specify who the intended claimant would be.

@zadok7 proposed that the gifter can use the ENS records to set who they intend for the name to go to.