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Telegram CEO: You will soon be able to buy unique Telegram usernames

By Winnie Mabel October 22nd, 2022 2 min read

Telegram founder Pavel Durov took to his Telegram channel to reveal that users will soon be able to buy unique usernames via auction.

“Until recently, 70% of all Telegram usernames had been reserved in inactive channels by cybersquatters from Iran.

This created a graveyard of dead usernames that cluttered search results and prevented millions of Telegram users from selecting appropriate public addresses for their accounts, groups and channels.

Users who wanted to acquire these reserved usernames often received no response or ended up being scammed,” Durov said in part.

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He said that the situation had begun changing, and by August 2022, Telegram had withdrawn all addresses linked to empty or inactive channels for the past year.

He also announced that Telegram would gradually reintroduce 99% of those addresses to the public but with algorithmic and geolocation limitations so more users can benefit from them.

At this point, he revealed users would soon be able to purchase unique user names via auction.

“I’m really impressed by the success of the auction TON recently conducted for their domain/wallet names. Wallet.ton was sold for 215,250 Toncoin (-$260,000) while casino.ton was sold for $244,000.

If TON has been able to achieve these results, imagine how successful Telegram, with its 700 million users, could be if we put reserved @ usernames, group and channel links for auction.

In addition to millions of catchy addresses like @storm or @royal, all four-letter usernames could be made available for sale (@bank, @club, @game, @gift etc).

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This would create a new platform where username holders could transfer them to interested parties in protected deals – with ownership secured on the block chain via NFT-like smart-contracts.

Other elements of the Telegram ecosystem, including channels, stickers, or emoji, could later also become parts of this marketplace,” said Durov.

He went on to explain that an auction would be the most efficient and fair way to distribute the highest-valued short usernames; and that those who managed to acquire them would put them to good use and bring value to Telegram users with original content hosted at recognizable addresses.

“I don’t doubt that those who hoarded Telegram usernames are disappointed, but this change will benefit the vast majority of our users. I look forward to seeing how millions of great Telegram addresses will be revived and finally start serving our community,” said Durov.

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