Pre-proposal: Lower the price of unique names in Decentraland


The price of names was originally set when both MANA and gas were cheaper. With the rising value of MANA and ever increasing gas fees, Names are becoming prohibitively expensive.

Should we lower the price of Names to make them more accessible?


Names in Decentraland are NFTs containing basic text minted using the ERC 721 standard. Names allow players to uniquely identify themselves when in-world, in addition to providing some fun and helpful Ethereum Name Service (ENS) features, like generating a short and more readable URL linking to a parcel or estate.

The price for names (100 MANA each) was set when the value of MANA put each name at roughly $10 to $20 USD, a much more reasonable amount when compared with today’s $60 to $70 USD. Furthermore, since names are minted on Ethereum mainnet, buying one incurs a high gas fee.

These factors combined render names fairly inaccessible, deterring users new to Decentraland from buying unique, custom names for their avatars. This is a problem, given how important custom, unique names are to the experience of joining a metaverse.


Can we mint names on Polygon to reduce gas fees?

While writing an early draft of this proposal, we explored the idea of minting names on Polygon to minimize gas fees. There’s two main reasons why this option won’t work:

  • Polygon doesn’t have support for ENS, so all of the URL generating features of L1 names would be lost
  • If we were to continue minting names on L1 while also offering a cheaper (but less feature rich) option on Polygon, we would have no feasible way to track which names were bought on L1 and which were bought on Polygon, creating the risk of duplicate names.

It’s worth noting that at some point in the future ENS will likely be available on Polygon, making this option a good one to revisit, but we would have to cease minting names on L1 entirely as soon as we began minting them on Polygon given the issue of duplicate names.

Even with lower prices, the gas fees will still be high.

If we only lower the price of names, but continue minting them on Ethereum mainnet, then users will still have to pay high gas fees. One potential solution is allocating funds from Decentraland’s DAO to reimburse “first-time name buyers” as a way to encourage them to join the platform.

The downside of this solution would be the risk of users simply creating new wallets whenever they want an additional name to get the gas reimbursement. There’s no way to verify that someone truly is a “first-time” buyer given the anonymity of Ethereum.

That being said, even with the high gas fees, minimizing the actual purchasing price is still one less barrier.

How could we retain the value of names purchased before the price change?

One option would be to mint a limited edition wearable to be transferred to users who bought a name at the higher price to signify their “early adopter” or “legacy” status. It would also be possible to link these wearables with the legacy names, helping to maintain the value of legacy names even when they are bought, sold, or transferred (e.g. when you buy a legacy name, you also automatically receive the accompanying wearable).

Creating these compensatory wearables for legacy names and updating the names and wearables smart contracts to link them to names could take a significant amount of time, since this is a nontrivial feature. Deciding on the exact implementation and timeline should be left for another proposal - this proposal is intended to simply establish if we should lower name prices or not.

Why not leave the price the same?

This remains an option, and would obviously preserve the value of L1 names. However, this will continue to discourage new users from buying a name, thus removing one more incentive for them to build an identity in Decentrland, potentially harming Decentraland’s adoption.

How much should we lower the price?

The exact amount should be discussed further and agreed on in another proposal, but a starting place might be 5 to 10 MANA. This would make the associated gas fee the biggest barrier.


Should we lower the price of names?

  1. 5 MANA
  2. 10 MANA
  3. Other value
  4. No