Hopefully, by now you have a MEW wallet with some ETH in it.
Maybe you even swapped some of that ETH for a couple of promising tokens.
This is a great start, but you might be thinking: I’ve heard that blockchain technology is set to change the world. Some say that blockchain’s impending impact on our life can only be compared to the explosion of the internet in the 1990s and 2000s.
At this, you may wonder – ok, but how? How can blockchain change things for me right now?
One important way the Ethereum blockchain is already changing the world (really, at this moment) is by building Web3, the decentralized internet. Now, you can add your content to this decentralized web – and invest in its growth – with the tools available in MEW.
What is Web3, anyway, and why do you need to be part of it?
To put it simply, it’s the internet redesigned with the power of blockchain.
Web 1.0 was the read-only static internet.
Web 2.0 introduced read-write interactive pages and possibilities of user-generated content.
Web 3.0 is the verifiable, censorship-resistant internet with read-write capabilities powered by the blockchain.
Here are just a few specific examples how a decentralized Web3 site is different:
- Scams and fakes on social media are becoming more and more frequent. To give your followers more confidence, you may have tried to get a verification mark on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram. The process is often difficult, takes a long time, and may only be available to prominent personalities and companies. With a decentralized domain, all you need to do is sign a message on the blockchain to prove that the content is really yours, because only the person who has the keys to the wallet that controls that domain can do so.
- The domain name serves both as a website name and as a destination for crypto funds, so if you are monetizing your content, your followers/clients/readers can send payments to your domain name without requiring any other information.
- Distributed hosting means that your site can’t be taken down or suspended by a hosting service, whether as a result of a glitch or in compliance with third party requests. Even when centralized internet services fail or become compromised by DNS attacks, your content will still be available to your users on the blockchain.
Now, let’s get you set up. A small step for you, a giant leap into Web3 for your content.
Step 1: Get a decentralized domain name
Access your wallet, navigate to the Dapps page, and choose either the Unstoppable Domains or the ENS Dapp, depending on whether you want a .crypto or a .eth domain, respectively. See our Help Center for guidance with domain registration: Unstoppable Domains, ENS.
Once you own a domain, you can use the same UD or ENS manager to assign addresses on different blockchains for the funds to go when they are sent to your domain name. By default, the destination Ethereum address is set to the wallet with which you purchased the domain.
Step 2: Upload website content
You will need either an IPFS (Interplanetary File System) hash or a zip file of the website to upload your content. Don’t worry if you have no idea what an IPFS hash is – that’s why MEW allows you to upload a zip file instead, and does the rest of the setup for you.
Many popular website builders like Wix and Square may not allow you to export your site as a zip file, precisely because they are unwilling to let users host their sites elsewhere. If you are not already using a self-hosted solution like Wordpress CMS, you can look for alternative website builders that allow for file export. After all, it makes sense that full ownership of your content is not compatible with third-party hosting.
If you are not quite ready to go ahead with a full website, it’s also possible to post individual documents to your domain. You could use an IPFS hash of the document, but with MEW, you can just zip the file and upload that way.
Follow our Help Center guide to upload your content using the same UD or ENS Dapp. It should only take a few minutes, but keep in mind that like any other transaction on Ethereum it requires gas paid in ETH. Once uploaded to IPFS, the file is pinned to a node, and every time someone requests the content for a specific IPFS hash – tied to a decentralized domain name – the system hops through the nodes to find it.
Step 3: Invite friends and clients to your corner of Web3
Navigating the decentralized web is becoming much easier via browser extensions created by domain registries, as well as growing native support in major browsers. Your website visitors won’t need any technical knowledge to find your page on the blockchain.
ENS .eth domains can be viewed with the MetaMask extension for Chrome/Firefox/Brave, or in any browser by adding the .link extension: myetherwallet.eth.link, for example. Both .eth and .crypto domains are accessible with the Unstoppable Extension in Chrome and the Unstoppable Domains browser. Finally, the Opera browser provides native support for .crypto domains.
For extra credit
- Encourage your friends and colleagues to register their own domains. That way, you’ll be making the entire crypto ecosystem more secure and contributing to the growth of Web3.
- Learn more about IPFS – if you host your own node, your setup will be 100% decentralized, and you’ll be providing valuable support to the decentralized network.
- If you’re ready to get into the gritty details of the state of Web3 development, check out this report.