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Brad Kam, Co-Founder of Unstoppable Domains, on Web3 Domains and Owning Your Data | Ep. 192

In an exclusive interview with cryptonews.com, Brad Kam, Co-Founder of Unstoppable Domains, talks about owning your data on the internet, Web3 domains, and building in a bear market.

About Brad Kam

Brad Kam is the Co-Founder of Unstoppable Domains, a Web3 domain name provider working to onboard the world onto Web3. Prior to Unstoppable Domains, he co-founded Talkable, a marketing tech company backed by Y Combinator. Brad holds a B.A. in Political Science from Emory University.

Brad Kam gave a wide-ranging exclusive interview which you can see below, and we are happy for you to use it for publication provided there is a credit to www.cryptonews.com. 

Highlights Of The Interview

  • Y-Combinator Stories from back in the day
  • Web3 domain names are your identity on the internet – you own it and control it
  • Owning and controlling your data on the internet – it’s worth more than you think
  • The innovator’s dilemma – business vs consumers
  • The Web2 era – consolidated identity data among a handful of big tech companies

 

 

 

Full Transcript Of The Interview

Matt Zahab 
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome back to the Cryptonews Podcast . We’re buzzin as always, today we’re coming in hot from the West Coast. Well, I’m still on the East Coast and tomorrow, but our guest is buzzing from the West Coast coming in hot from San Fran beautiful SF. Today we have Bradley Kam, also known as Brad, who’s the co-founder of Unstoppable Domains, a Web3 Domain Name Provider working to onboard the world onto Web3. Prior to Unstoppable Domains, he co-founded Talkable, a marketing tech company backed by Y Combinator, we always love to see that Brad also holds a BA in Poli Sci from Emory University. Super pumped to have you on Brad, welcome to the show, man.

Brad Kam 
Thanks so much for having me. 

Matt Zahab 
What’s San Fran like nowadays, how’s San Fran treating everyone? 

Brad Kam 
You know, it’s quiet. It’s quieter than it used to be. But it’s nice, like startup community still here Crypto Community is still here. It’s just most of the parties are somewhere else. 

Matt Zahab 
The crazy Exodus. I’ve talked about this so many times in the show, it’s still intrigues me so much. So is the bus still there’s the startup buzz, can you still feel it in the air? 

Brad Kam 
You can a bit, you know, I think that it’s so like the startup founders were there. But then the rest of the teams aren’t there anymore. Everybody else. So like you don’t see it as much like of it’s kind of invisible. You don’t see like kids walking around with bark backpacks absolutely everywhere, or like, people talk about their startup at every coffee shop anymore, but they’re still there. And the early-stage community is still there. And the Crypto Community is still there and for us, but I think it’s split now with New York, which is, which is not the way that it used to be before COVID. 

Matt Zahab 
And you moved to San Fran, back in the day, if I did my prep correctly here. I want to say that was around 10 years ago in 2011. That’s when you founded Talkable, which is sort of that, you know, referral marketing company, I believe back in the day from YC love here and any YC stories do you have any crazy stories from PG or any one of the like, or any of the classic, you know, move fast and break things like anything that really stuck out from your time at YC that you still use today at Unstoppable or anything of the like. 

Brad Kam 
So yeah, so I lived in 2012, I had probably, I think one, one walk with a PG. That’s what he used to do, he would take every team and then go on a 15 minute walk around Mountain View with you, and then take you back to the front and there’d be a line of teams behind you. And he dropped me off to pick up the next team. And during that 15-minute talk, he told us we had this idea about how we were going to is sort of related to being able to invest or like predict which companies that were using Talkable were going to be successful, we were kind of excited about this idea. And he goes, You guys aren’t gonna care about this in a year. This sounds like a distraction; I would just focus on your core business. And he was right. So a couple minutes, a couple months later, we realized that it was really a distraction and not our core business. And then we went back to doing what we had intended to do, and it worked out. So just a good reminder that somebody who has experienced that as seeing the patterns. They know what a tangent looks like. And that’s stuck with me a bit. I tried to reflect, you know, is this really the thing we set out to do or not? If it’s not, like, you know, I think you need to really question whether or not it’s the right thing, I hear all of this, like, pro pivot ideas kind of out there in the world. And I’m a little skeptical, like, I think, you know, it can work but, you know, there’s a reason why you decided to do this crazy absurd thing with your life called Startup where it’s like, it’s like almost an irrational decision to just hyper focus on this one thing and like give up all these other parts of life. So to just throw that away for another thing. You know, I think that you might you might burn yourself out that way. So you know, usually there’s something that inspired you to go work on a particular thing that’s why I’m skeptical of a lot of pivots. 

Matt Zahab 
Well said it’s true the whole pivot culture so front of mind and accepted nowadays where it’s like if you don’t think that your moral compass and North Star can work it’s like yeah, just throw your hands in the air say fuck it and pivot and maybe the pivot will be the thing it’s a little counterintuitive. What of that move by PG though like talk about you know, get into birds don’t that once they’re so like he gets the walk all day you got to get his steps and get his exercise perhaps his own to cardio while also providing that mentorship to all the YC companies like that’s the biggest vet move I’ve ever heard. I’d love that. 

Brad Kam 
It’s a great life. I love my work allowed me to wander around every day like I would I would definitely do. I do a lot of walking meetings actually. Like whenever people ask me to go to call fit. I always wind up taking them on like a pretty serious cardio walk up and down hills and stuff like that because I’m just sitting all day. So if I’m gonna meet you in person, I don’t want to go sit in a restaurant. 

Matt Zahab 
Yeah, no, that’s huge, especially in San Fran, you guys have good enough weather to do that. In Toronto, it’s a little tough. Do you have any, like, any workflows are procedures for your walking meetings, because that’s something that I absolutely adore as well. I’ve gotten a lot of feedback for like, both positive and negative being like, Oh, wow, this is great. I’m gonna incorporate this into my own life and I’ve also gotten the you know, why do I need to go for a walk with you? Like why can’t it just be face to face and it’s like well, if we’re going to do it just like you said, if we’re gonna go have a cup of joe together we might as well have a cup of joe go for a walk, get 10,000 steps and over the case have been an hour and a half and you know, get to Bridgestone at once and the processes and procedures are needed to make the whole process a lot smoother on your end and there end. 

Brad Kam 
Well you’re right so San Francisco weather is almost always nice. So you can do it pretty much any day of the year. But I go like super I guess lazy I go to a spot that’s five minutes walk from my house. Sometimes I even suggest that people come and walk on my roof because I got a really nice roof where you can see the whole city now and it’s legitimately a pot like a nice experience. Like it’s a those two walks are I would consider that to be almost destinations on their own. So people tend to enjoy it. And yeah, I’ve got a 100% success rate so far. No complaints. 

Matt Zahab 
Okay, I’m gonna have to take notes, get my success rate up a little higher. Let’s get into the you and crypto and more specifically you and Unstoppable Domains. While doing research for you in the show. I saw read heard whatever you want to call it. You read a WIRED article back in 2011. And this is what got you not hooked but intrigued and interested in Bitcoin. And the rest is history. Is that true? 

Brad Kam 
No, not quite. I read the WIRED article, which I think a lot of people read in 2011 The Rise and Fall of Bitcoin. And then I said, Oh, that’s cool. And that I said the magazine aside, I didn’t think about it again for another 18 months. And then 18 months later, I moved to San Francisco in 2012. And I moved to this Hacker House called 20Mission in the Mission District in San Francisco and it was a Bitcoin hub. So there was a Bitcoin exchange that got launched in the basement. Before Coinbase there was a Bitcoin Media Channel that was running in 2013 they were doing meetups going back to 2012 the Talaq gave a talk in the courtyard before Ethereum went live. Basically everybody who was there was somehow involved in crypto. I, when I moved to the city, I knew one person and he lived in this house, it was a good friend of mine from Atlanta. And everybody I met was somehow involved in Bitcoin it was almost like the community I landed in the Bitcoin future was like the default future like people were just like, well, of course, and Bitcoin was, you know, sub a billion market cap at this time, like there was no reason to be so confident. But when you put yourself around a whole bunch of technologists, they see that future is inevitable. And so that’s what I walked into. When I moved to San Francisco, I was very lucky. So I read the white paper around then sort of following it sort of buying soon after that sort of going into events, and etc. And, you know, was kind of following along in the background while working on my marketing tech company. And then a few years later, I just, I can no longer sit on the sidelines. So it was really just luck of being dropped into this group of people and many of them, you know, later went on to do something pretty awesome in the crypto space. 

Matt Zahab 
What’s that famous quote, like three most important things in life who you marry, where you live, and I forget the third, I’m butchering it. It’s something big. But anyways, that’s number one with you, though, it’s like, if you wouldn’t have been in San Fran, back in 2012. When I believe you found out about it, like the perhaps you would have never known. You know, like, yeah, your circle. 

Brad Kam
Or never paid attention. You know, I would have heard about it. Like I think a lot of people but I wouldn’t have realized and no action. Yeah, I wouldn’t realize the weight of it. Because you know, like, yeah, you read a news story and you’re like, Okay, well, I don’t know, you know, I don’t know, maybe that’s real, maybe that’s not but when you’re surrounded by people that really understand the tech and everybody was mining. Everybody was you know, buying everybody was you know, trying it out. People were building you know, Bitcoin hardware, wallets, you know, all sorts of stuff. So, it just, it made it feel real in a way that maybe it wouldn’t have if I had been from a distance. So I really do believe this that like if you if you want to get into something, it’s good to surround yourself with people who are deep in it. And you know, I think, you know, I hate to use the term insider, but I think that almost every industry has this kind of institutional knowledge and a lot of it is shared, you know, person to person or kind of collective on understandings after conversations and dinners and things like that. So I think it works that way with Hollywood. And with entertainment. I think it works that way with politics and DC. I think it works that way with finance in New York. So I think it’s like there are these hubs for these industries. And, you know, San Francisco was the spot for crypto for probably almost the past decade. 

Matt Zahab 
Very well said such an underrated and extremely important part of life is where you are and who you surround yourself with. Let’s jump a couple years and you moved to SF, you work on your marketing tech company, you and everyone else there loves Bitcoin, you are now an investor in a couple of companies in the space. And then your co-founder comes up with you for an idea about a consumer friendly Blockchain Domains/naming startup, too good of an opportunity for you to pass up on the rest of history. Five, six years later, 2022 You guys are biggest naming company in this space and have a vision to onboard billions of people to Web3. Before we get into it, I’d love if you could give me the quick pitch just to sort of set the foundation for Unstoppable Domains. 

Brad Kam 
Yeah, well, so your Web3 Domains name is supposed to be your identity on the Internet, kind of like your username on the Internet. And the difference is that you own it, you own it forever, you control it. And this enables you to do things like control your own data, control your profile, control your reputation. It can work across all sorts of apps. It’s kind of a paradigm shift for the way that the Internet works today. Your identity is controlled by social media companies or finance companies like PayPal, etc. And if you turn that around, and you put it in the hands of the people I think you get you get a much more powerful product and you get you get much more security, autonomy, freedom. 

Matt Zahab 
When you guys started UD Unstoppable Domains to me, and I’m pulling this is strictly, you know, this is hogwash, this fake news, I’m about to say, hey, maybe it’s not but this is I have no merit or no stats or data based on this. The biggest problem when I onboard friends to crypto is the, you know, X character, whatever, let’s say it’s ETH 20, whatever 26 character, whatever the case may be, I’m sitting sometimes 40 characters hexadecimal address. It’s like, Hey, Brad, you owe me 100 bucks, and I send you 0x, one bubble, blah, blah, blah. That’s absolutely nonsensical. They see that and then they go, okay, Matt, what if I add an extra letter number, you’re hooked? It’s going to the best. That seems like the no brainer for why even the team started Unstoppable Domains, perhaps right? Perhaps it’s not, we’ll find out. And now it just seems so apparent that the whole data play seems like a bigger, more important, humans are now cognizant of how much Web2 has taken our data harvested, it profited off of it given none of it back to us. In return, we only got the usability and the nice UI and UX of these big behemoth Fortune 500 Web2 companies, am I right? Not in regards to it starting off with like the shitshow of the letters and numbers and making it easy like “brad.nft”, or “brad.crypto”. And now present day, it’s about the data play? 

Brad Kam 
Yeah, totally. Right. So when we started, I mean, I would say going back to 2014, there was this assumption in Bitcoin meetups, that you would go around and you talk to people, people would just assume that the long characters were eventually going to be hidden, like they would like people would talk about it in terms of lectures, this thing is never going to go mainstream. Until you know, we have some sort of User Name System, people weren’t designing one or sure what exactly what it was gonna look like, or how it was going to work or anything like that. But there was kind of this default of, it’s only going to be for enthusiast until we have easy to use names. So I remember talking with Matt, my co-founder about this general idea, probably back in 2014, I think it was. So that was just an assumption that we had hanging out with crypto people at that time. And fast forward to 2016, 2017, when Ethereum came out, and you started to see all of these, they didn’t call them this yet, but NFT apps coming out, then we realized, Hey, this is a format that we could use to build Web3 Domains names. And that was the starting point. And we had this vague idea that the Internet is broken. And this tech should also be at a very basic level, if you have a private key. If you have a public private key pair, then you can put your user in charge of their own security. And so we knew that was true. And we thought that would make a better Internet. And so we always thought, we’re going to start with crypto, then we’re going to make the Internet better by giving every user a public private key pair with you know, through their Domain name, and that’s going to make the Internet better. What we didn’t I think, appreciate the beginning was how totally screwed the regular Internet was and at, to say, 2017 time when this idea was first getting baked, I don’t think that was quite so obvious yet. You know, I mean, I think it was starting to peak, there was like a little bit of Facebook anger over the 2016 election stuff. And so it was kind of it was starting, but it was not very early. Yeah, like now. And, here’s another random, you know, random quirk of history, free speech was a liberal cause at that time, it was the people that were talking about free speech, were saying, like Hong Kong, protesters need to be freed. And all of these things, it was not a domestic issue at all, it was not a conservative issue at all. 

Matt Zahab 
Five years ago, we’re talking.

Brad Kam 
Yeah, very, recent. So the world has changed a lot in the way that people view these problems. And then, you know, things just kind of exploded, somewhere around 2018 time, or all of a sudden, everyone in the world realized, hey, the Internet is just totally screwed. Like social media companies control everything, they’re able to decide who gets to say what they’re making all this money off of our data, like, well, we saw a study pretty recently saying that there’s a, your data on average gets sold 1000 times per day, so per person, 1000 times per day, which is just a, I mean, it’s just an outrageous economy. Where, yeah, where we are the cattle essentially being sold. It, we’ve no idea, and all of that, I think is just kind of blasted into the mainstream, very recently. You know, there’s, you know, Netflix movies, you know, the social dilemma, etcetera. And the funny thing about all of that is they say, okay, the Internet is broken, it’s bad. And then that it kind of gets to the end. And they’re like, and we have no idea what to do about it. So tell your kids to turn off their phones. Like, that’s the solution that we get to. And Web3 has a solution. You know, it’s I think it’s gonna take a while to play out. But there’s actually a way to do this better. And it all comes down to put user in control. And that’s how you get security and safety and autonomy. 

Matt Zahab 
Right? You can’t stop there. You got to keep going. How do you put the user in control that was gold to keep the trains? 

Brad Kam 
Yeah, that’s super. So the starting point is the Domains name, which is your username. And so I have brad.crypto, that is my like universal username across apps. So you can send me money to it in dozens of different crypto wallets and exchanges, I can log into dApps using it. And I have this digital profile. It’s kind of like a social media profile page, I control the data. The only way you can access it is if I sign a message with the private key that controls the Domain name. And then I’m able to log into dApps and have verified information about me. It’s the equivalent of like, imagine that there was a new Facebook that came out. And instead of having to go and upload your photos, and connect with your friends, and build content, and spend two years building up your profile, just with two clicks, all of your previous activity that you wanted to come along with comes a lot. 

Matt Zahab 
It’s like when you get a new iPhone, and you just put your old one beside the new one. And it automatically syncs everything. That’s like the biggest treat ever to me. I cannot believe how smooth that is. The best. 

Brad Kam 
Exactly. And now imagine that that is every app on the Internet. 

Matt Zahab 
Huge.

Brad Kam 
And so a new app comes about. And people think like, Okay, well, you know, why is that so important? The reason it’s so important is competition leads to better user experiences, like so we don’t have competition right now. We have Facebook, and they are our app, and they are our data storage, and giving them the data storage role. That’s the thing that messed us up. And that’s the thing that Unstoppable wants to change. So if they’re no longer your data store, if they’re just an app, then they’re no longer in a position to control you. Instead, they have to work for your love. They have to give you an amazing experience. Because if they don’t, two clicks, and you’re going to a competitor, yeah, there could be 100 Facebook’s and they could all pop up all the time. But there’s almost no new social media apps that compete directly with the old ones. They build new features sometimes, but they almost never compete with the old ones. Initially, because the data storage piece, the data storage piece is just such a monopoly that users can’t get out users are stuck. And that I think is the real promise of have a Web3 Identity System is it’s just trivial for me to move around on the Internet. So that’s, that’s one thing, the flexibility. I think the other thing and this part is really not well understood, unless you look at the revenues of some of these giant companies, but your data is worth a lot. Somebody is making lots of money off of this. And what’s going to happen if you control your identity is you make that money. You make that well. People will literally, they pay you for proving certain information about yourself, they might pay you in cash, they might pay you in rewards, like an app gives you a special reward because of who you are and what your reputation is. But ultimately, that wealth is going to go to you, instead of going to all of these big ad providers, I think, that’s the other really big piece, you’re gonna get competition. And then you’re going to actually be able to keep and build wealth. From the things you do online. 

Matt Zahab 
I think the last part, you talked about how the consumer can own and profit, monetize their data, I think that’s huge. Because you know, life is all about incentives, and the users gonna want like, Hey, Brad, if I’m gonna sign up on Unstoppable and get a “matt.crypto”, which I assume your co-founder has, by the way, yeah, I’m sure he does. One of the, you know, Mom, Dad, I love you guys, but perhaps maybe picked a more unique name than Matthew, but say that story for another day. The data, that’s the point where it’s like now that you guys are letting users know that in a couple years, they will have 100% rights, and there will be a multitude of ways to profit off their own data. That’s a big one a value/slash incentive to get people in the door. But until then, right now, there’s really not that big of value prop, right now, the sort of the workflow and in transactional system is, I give you my data. And in return, I get to use a really solid app that all of my peers also use, you know what I mean? Like, there’s no real big value profit, it’s going to happen, what three to five years, most likely. 

Brad Kam 
I hoped sooner, I think you’re gonna start to see some things in 2023, I think you’re gonna start to see some, you know, rewards and things like that. In 2023, inside of the Unstoppable Ecosystem, there’s already some very basic things like, you can get a free Domain inside of a low value free Domain has a certain apps, if you log in and share certain data. So there’s already Unstoppables, already offering a reward, I think other apps are going to start offering rewards. And that’s going to be kind of the form it takes, is, you know, rather than, you know, somebody says, Hey, will you sell me every personal piece of information about you for $30 per month, which is kind of like closer to Facebook, it’s going to be more like, Hey, you are a user who is DeFi DEGEN. And you also have a pretty decent social media following. So we want to give you this product for free, or we want to give you this product, and we want you to try out this product, and we want to give you this sort of a discount. So I think it’s going to feel closer to like marketing actually is going to be the way that users experience it. But that’s still money being transferred to the user instead of money being transferred to this third party. And I think that’s the real big shift that a Web3 identity is going to lead to. 

Matt Zahab 
Such an interesting point there. What’s the Domains on Unstoppable right now are the most sought after, would it be ENS which is “.eth” for those at home. 

Brad Kam 
So on Unstoppable side, the ones that are selling the best are I believe “.crypto” has actually the most registrations, and then I think “.nft” is a close second. In terms of dollars, “.x” is also pretty high up there “.x” is more expensive. That’s kind of the more kind of premium but in terms of number of registrations, I believe “.crypto” and then “.nft”  is running quickly behind it. 

Matt Zahab 
That’s huge and on the setup side just for the folks at home. If I want to get mistaken let’s say I’m a full name mattzahab.crypto and then again I take you to dinner we go get a couple of stakes, it’s 500 bucks after maybe some steaks and some red vino and I pull a shit guy move and go Brad, you owe me you know you’re paying for dinner tonight I want 500 bucks in any crypto from the user side of things, how easy is it to get all my addresses from whether it’s Metamask, Centralized Exchange, blah, blah, blah, maybe not Centralized Exchange, but take your coins off no keys, not your coins, set up a ledger or a Trezor or any cold wallet, get those addresses, connect it with your username/Domain on Unstoppable Domains, walk me through the process of how to get locked and loaded from the consumer standpoint. 

Brad Kam 
So we’ll make it pretty easy for you, especially with Ethereum and Polygon Addresses. So we’ll make it so you can apart when you meant the Domains that those are auto attached because you know we can we can easily pull that information. And so those can kind of seamlessly attach then you do have to go back in and add others there’s some setups we have where a crypto wallet will allow you to just attach essentially all your addresses at once if you want to like a Bitcoin, ETH, Litecoin whatever. But generally the flow is ETH Polygon will auto attach and then you’ll copy and paste your Bitcoin address one time, attach it to your Domain name and then you’re good. 

Matt Zahab 
And that’s it. Otherwise you’re good to go. 

Brad Kam 
Yes, copy and paste and then press one button. The good news is that you get to verify it once you verify find that one time, then after that when a user goes to pay you with their Domain name, you know that you type in the Domain name. And it’ll show a little checkmark like, yes, there is a valid Bitcoin address associated with this Domain name. If not, you can’t send. So it’s not like you can like, accidentally, like you have to type in the Domain name wrong. And that has to be a valid Domain name in order to send to the wrong person. And it’s just a lot easier to check a human readable name. I mean, this is just, you know, the machines are great for it. The machines are great. And they can handle 40 characters. Humans can’t because we just our eyes cannot fat cannot check all of those random characters. So we need order, you know, we need words that make sense to us. And that’s why name is important. And the shorter the name, in some ways, the better because the easier to make sure that it’s the right person. 

Matt Zahab 
Well, the whole crypto Domain saga and revolution, and momentum is sort of mimicked and almost copied the traditional Web2 Domain right where it was like, you want generic, broad keywords that can be used for you know, like Mark Cuban sold a bunch of really good Domain, you have your I don’t know I’m looking at it, you have your “arena.eth”, you know, your “beer.eth”, “flicker.eth”, whatever, right? All your very popular ones. And on top of that you have the shorter, the better. And then we had the whole ENS revolution. I guess that was back, I want to say early this year. And it wasn’t even so much names. It was the numbers. What did you make of the whole numbers thing? I guess I’ll give some context. First, there was a whole digits for ENS. Right? So it started off in people who got three digits, so like 001, double seven went for, I think 100 grand, then you had your you know, “123.eth”, and then you had your four digits. So “8912.eth”, these were all worth a lot of money. I think four digits are still worth like 10 grand for random numbers, “.eth”? What’s your whole take on that you think that’s here to stay? Or was that just a fad, and it’s gonna be toast in a couple of years. 

Brad Kam 
It is hard to say ,with traditional Domains names, there is some value to number of Domains, especially internationally, a lot of a lot of number Domains wind up being brands and things. Yeah, so there is something to say about numbers. I think it’s possible the Web3 it’s very hard to say. But I do feel like it also moved into fad territory a bit. And that it’s easier to group numbers like to say like a I’m a very introvert, everybody has a five, you know, five digit number Domain rather than grouping. Names, words and things like that, which may be might not fit into standard groups in quite the same way. But if you look at traditional Domains, you know, shorter names probably are better than shorter, and then the equivalent character number of numbers. So generally speaking, crypto Twitter loves fads. So we do, we do get a little and it lasted, you know, we saw it too, like there were like crazy numbers of number registrations on our site on several Domains as well. And it did burn out a bit after a couple of months. It may come back, but I suspect that there’s a lot of other categories out there that are relevant to users so hard to say there was fun. 

Matt Zahab 
No, it was it was a good rep. Folks. Quick break. Gotta give a huge shout out to our sponsor of the show that is PrimeXBT, we’d love PrimeXBT as we’ve been using for a hot minute. Why? Because they offer a great product at a very reasonable price doesn’t matter if you are a rookie or a vet, you can easily design and customize your layouts and widgets to best fit your trading style. PrimeXBT is also running an exclusive promo for listeners of the Cryptonews Podcast, get 50% That’s five 0% of your deposit credited to your trading account. The promo code is CRYPTONEWS50. That’s CRYPTONEWS50, CRYPTONEWS50. All one word to receive 50% of your deposit credited to your trading account. Now back to show Brad. Brad, I got a question here. I’m going to put you on the put you in the hot seat. How the hell is GoDaddy not offered to buy you guys out yet? Or one of the big Domains name companies? Or perhaps they haven’t. And I don’t know about it. But any rumblings on that? 

Brad Kam 
I think this is a little bit the innovators dilemma, you know, and I think the real issue is that traditional Domain names are really tools for businesses to build their web presence. And so their market is really like small businesses up to big businesses. And our market, our end users are consumers building their digital identity. So they’ve got a couple 100 million potential users. We’ve got 4 billion you know the whole Internet, but we’re not really focused on the website Use Case, we’re focused on payments, and we’re focused on identity. We’re focused on login and authentication. So there’s actually like not a ton of overlap today, between the customer bases and between what you’re using with Domains. So they’re not surprisingly, they’re not actually the closest to what we’re doing, I would say that the social media companies are actually getting a little bit closer, Twitter and Reddit, etc. So they’re kind of the ones that are trying to go after sort of a similar market, and I’m sure you saw Reddit Avatars, yeah, that is a form of identity, you know, you would want to have a username, and you would want to have, you know, a digital profile picture, you know, which is kind of like what the avatars are. So they’re working on a piece of, you know, kind of a future, you know, decentralized social media. So those are the companies that are probably a little bit closer, we’ll see what the traditional Domains name companies do. I think that jumping from being a SMD PRODUCT, to being a consumer product is a really is a big leap. And that’s actually why they have focused on it less, they are paying attention. And there is a awesome Domains name conference every year that we speak out called NamesCon. And we’ve been there since 2018 telling the community that this is going to be the future of Domains names. And, you know, they laughed at us in 2018, and 2019. And we’re maybe like, a little bit curious in 2020, and 2021, and 2022. Everyone’s like, Yeah, this is inevitable. Like, this definitely the future. So there’s a lot of awareness now. And there’s a lot of poking around that I think you’re gonna start to see a lot of traditional Domains registrar’s, get into the space in some way, in terms of, you know, selling Domains names, etc. So I think you’re gonna see it, likely in 2023. But it’s still a stretch for them, because it’s a different customer base, they just need new products, because that industry is not. 

Matt Zahab 
That’s what I mean, though. And that’s where doesn’t make sense to acquire the leader in the space who’s offering those new products to a brand-new subset of consumers. But again, you’re right, it’s a lot of the times the risk does not outweigh the reward. 

Brad Kam
If you make the right move for them, it’s just, you know, it’s just tough when you’re the big incumbent, and you’re sitting on this crazy, you know, crazy cash cow, you know, to say, like, you know, should I, you know, should I give it up, I missed this, I think is probably the same thing that’s happening with like, you know, Google and all the AI chat stuff. Yeah. You know, like, I think there’s a lot of people to Google that were like, hey, this AI chat stuff might kill us. We should do something about it. And somebody else says, Yeah, but money’s falling from the sky over here. So like, do you really want to stop sky money? Like, in the meantime, I think that’s a really, you know, I think it’s a tough position to be at, you know, it’s like a champagne problem that can kind of get you stuck. 

Matt Zahab 
I assume you’ve been fucking around with ChatGPT. And like, it’s pretty much fun to create, any unique or under the table Use Cases that haven’t been making the rounds on Twitter, or LinkedIn or Insta or anything like that. 

Brad Kam
I don’t feel like I’m the expert on this. So, I don’t think I’m gonna have any unique insight. But there’s, I think there’s just a lot of writing that happens that is sort of, not in the so to speak, like creative category, that’s in the kind of functional category. And, you know, I find myself doing it a lot, I find team members doing it a lot, I think that these tools can really just eliminate that, like supercharge that, and then we’re gonna kind of get back to the sort of, you know, creative writing will be the thing, you know, creative ideation, I should say, will be the thing that we humans can contribute, and that a lot of the rest of the stuff, you know, mundane stuff, like, you know, let’s just press a button, and you know, and crank it out. Like, that just seems great. Like, it’s basically like the AI just figured out how to do all the boring writing for us. So that’s the best part. 

Matt Zahab
The best part. Yeah, got of a weird one here for you. We’ll get into some fun questions. You could own any Domain in the world. Cannot be a company and cannot be a name? So it can’t be something like “tesla.eth” or, you know, or “saudiaramco.com” or whatever. But we’ll go for crypto for the sake of ETH here, cannot be a first name and cannot be a company name. What generic keyword are you going for? For a “.com” or “.crypto”? What’s Brad get a was he jumping up? Anything in the world? 

Brad Kam 
So it’s definitely gonna be a finance and probably crypto term. You know, I mean, I think Bitcoin would be up there. Yeah, you know, I think Pi would be up there. I think all these like, yeah, these like kind of generic finance terms I think would be would be really high up there. They’d probably be close to the top of the list. I don’t know what the most popular first name is in the world. But whatever the globally most popular First name. That’s probably interesting. 

Matt Zahab
Muhammad. Yeah. Needs Muhammad by a landslide to. That’d be bananas. Next up for Unstoppable. What do you guys have on the dock? You guys, it seems like you guys have a new integration or partnership every single week, we’d love to see that keep the momentum going, especially in a bear market. But what do you guys have on top for 2023. And beyond? 

Brad Kam
That’s a really big focus, because it’s actually easier to do integrations during bear market, because the bull is busy, like during bull market, everyone’s just trying to make sure that their website doesn’t go down, because new users are showing up and ensemble had this problem to where like, it’s hard to invest in longer term things when, you know, it’s just crazy like that. And once we all get to kind of take a breather during bear market, and all of a sudden, you know, it’s easier to do integration. So yeah, we’re talking to all sorts of companies that, you know, maybe we wouldn’t have been talking to, you know, nine months or a year ago. So that’s a huge focus for us during the bear market, on the tech side, building out more tools for the digital profiles, and we want you to be able to really feel like this is kind of like the digital you that you’re going to be able to add all sorts of information and continue to enrich your profile so that it’s more useful in apps and dApps. So those are those are the two big areas. 

Matt Zahab 
And the end goal of Unstoppable is it literally to one onboard the masses to Web3, and to give everyone a platform where they can own, monetize and control their data. 

Brad Kam
Yeah, we want all 4 billion Internet users to be using Domains as their usernames controlling their own data and logging in on the Internet and paying and do all the things that they do today, but in a in a self-sovereign way. 

Matt Zahab
I mean, you’d love to see that Brad what a treat man. It’s been a lot of fun. Couple more rapid fire ones for you here. Why the name? It’s such a good name. But why Unstoppable Domains? Like, it’s unorthodox. You know, like most people literally don’t pick the like, you guys are in the Domains game. And you chose to add Domains to it. Like, it’s unique. It’s unorthodox. But it hits so nice. Like, yeah, why do you name it that? 

Brad Kam 
You know, I mean, we were we were playing around with names. And we, you know, we came across this concept of like, what is really unique about this technology, I think the thing that’s really unique about this technology is ownership. And we really wanted to and I would just say in general, I think Web3, the value of Web3 is really about ownership, that the user, the value of crypto, I think is really about ownership. I own my Bitcoin, I own my Ethereum and the same thing is true for your Web3 Domains name, the same thing is true for your NFT art, it’s all comes down to this idea of ownership. And we wanted to highlight that we wanted that to be the thing that stuck in your head which is that I own this thing and so Unstoppable felt like a concept that like a powerful version of that concept. And I think that if we want to you know if I want to say like how do we want people to feel in this new Internet, I would say empowered, and that’s why Unstoppable felt like the right term. 

Matt Zahab 
It’s good it’s just it’s like I said it’s unique and it hits good shit there. Last question, hot take factory we’re jumping in, put a shake kickin boots on and it’s time for Brad to let us give us a couple hot takes and then only Brad believes in the most other people do not can be sports, food politics, space, AI, you name it. What are a couple of Brad hot takes must have a couple? 

Brad Kam 
Let’s see. My only once per day. I think maybe already. 

Matt Zahab 
You spoke with that. That’s so cool. Folks, Brad eats one meal between six and 7pm. Just dinner, and the benefits just keeps you clear keeps your light focused all day long. 

Brad Kam
Yeah, I’m not convinced it’s the healthiest. But it is the best for mental clarity for me. So I can just go throughout the day, I never feel tired. I just feel very energized and might I’m able to think clearly. You know, if I eat a big lunch or even a small lunch, then you know, sometimes I slow down for an hour. And I feel like I lost that time. So I just try to the save until the end of the day. 

Matt Zahab 
Why do you feel like it might not be the healthiest for you? 

Brad Kam
Well, I’m told that eating all at once later on in the day, like eating large amounts later on in the day might not be the best. So I’m still kind of playing around with played around with how to do it. I know this is best for mental, you know, mental clarity, but maybe it’s not the best for say weight gain or something like that. And it’s never been a problem. But I’m 39 now and I think you know, it gets a little harder over time. So may need to adjust a little bit but it’s definitely worked for me for the past 15 years. 

Matt Zahab 
I feel like you’re your gut and your energy Thank you for that as well like you shouldn’t eating once a day you’re really you’re not working them that much. Are you a black coffee kind of guy throughout the morning and afternoon? 

Brad Kam 
A little bit a half and half so yeah, so I do get some I do get some calories through coffee in the morning. 

Matt Zahab 
Love that. Brad would a treat man really appreciate you coming on. You guys been one of my favorite consumer facing crypto companies for a while now. You guys do things the right way and continue to hold us and build and puts a smile on my face and I’m proud of you the team. Really appreciate you coming on and hope to have you on again until next time, can you please let our listeners know where they can find you and Unstoppable online and on socials? 

Brad Kam 
Absolutely. So I would check out @unstoppableweb on Twitter. That’s the best place to hear ideas about Web3 Domains names and know what’s going on. And then I would also encourage everybody to check out unstoppabledomains.com and actually play around with it, try it out and see what it’s like that’s the best way to understand where it’s sometimes can feel abstract but once you see it, I think it’ll make a lot more sense. 

Matt Zahab 
Yeah, very clean as well Brad, really appreciate this man. Thank you and looking forward to the next time. 

Brad Kam  
Thank you appreciate it. 

Matt Zahab 
Folks. What an episode with Brad Kam from Unstoppable Domain. If you’re looking for a Web3 name, head on over and get on boarded into the world of Web3. Huge thanks to Brad, he was dropping knowledge bombs left right and center. We love to see that the team love you guys. Thanks for everything. Justas, my amazing sound editor. Appreciate you as always going to listeners. Thanks guys. Keep on growing those bags and keep on staying healthy, wealthy and happy. Bye for now. We’ll talk soon.