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ENS Resolves Dispute Over Domain with $300,000 Settlement

The Ethereum Name Service (ENS) developer is poised to resolve its dispute with Manifold Finance over ownership of the domain following the approval of a $300,000 settlement by its decentralised autonomous organisation (DAO).

A vote by the ENS DAO concluded on Feb. 26, with approximately 88% endorsing the settlement.

This agreement will see ENS Labs dropping its lawsuit and paying $300,000 to Manifold while retaining the domain name.

Additionally, 84% of voters approved a $750,000 reimbursement for ENS Labs’ legal expenses.

This settlement brings an end to an 18-month-long conflict that saw ENS Labs suing Manifold and domain registrars GoDaddy and Dynadot in an Arizona District Court.

The lawsuit resulted in an order preventing the domain from being transferred away from ENS Labs.

ENS founder Nick Johnson explained in a Feb. 13 forum post that Manifold’s settlement terms included a demand for $300,000 from ENS Labs, alongside confidentiality and non-disparagement clauses.

Johnson stated, “In return, they are offering an all-parties settlement, which would result in the dismissal of the case and ENS Labs retaining the domain name.”

ENS functions as a blockchain equivalent of the Domain Name System (DNS), translating domain names like into IP addresses for browser accessibility.

Due to the incompatibility between the two systems, ENS utilises the domain to support “.eth” ENS-based domains.

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The ownership of lapsed in July 2022, as the early contributor Virgil Griffith, who owned it, could not renew it while serving a jail sentence.

Subsequently, GoDaddy, the registrar for, allowed the domain to expire, enabling Manifold to acquire it through auction on Dynadot in September 2022.

ENS initiated legal action against the three entities, obtaining a court order halting the domain’s transfer after they failed to appear at a court hearing.

Following months of legal proceedings, Arizona District Judge John Tuchi ordered Dynadot to unlock in July 2023 for transfer to ENS.

It appears that ENS and GoDaddy have reconciled over the matter, as they recently collaborated to offer .eth ENS domain holders the opportunity to link their domains with traditional domains for free earlier this month.

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Disclaimer: This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.

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