Thoughts on Identity

What identity systems will ESV support?

There are none currently available publicly, that we are comfortable adopting. We will be adopting the wallet workshop identity system, which is professionally designed, documented and will likely come with a reference implementation.

What is an identity?

So you support multiple identity systems, you have a contact system which processes someone’s identity and on-boards them as a contact, and presents them to the user in a consistent and flexible way.

What if we do not support an identity system?

Someone gets added to a discussion you are part of. As part of the discussion protocol, their identity is required to be included. This means that ESV is going to get it, process it and display them in a useful way as a participant in the discussion.

Avoiding contact confusion?

As you interact with other people and acquire their identities, you are going to accrue contacts. But there’s a difference between your mother and someone who requests to use the name “you mother”. If you get a payment request from one of these it matters which one.

  • Between known and unknown contacts. The known you will have altered in some way that indicates you accept them as their name. This might be changing your mother’s contact name from her full name “Hyacinth Bucket”, to be something else, like “Mumsy.” Or it might be that we add a tag system, and you tag your mother “Hyacinth Bucket” with “Family.”
  • Between duplicate display names. You are in a discussion with “Bob” and “Bob” and “Alice” and “Alice”? Nope, you’re probably in a discussion with “Bob#1” and “Bob#2” and “Alice#1” and “Alice#2”, who get an altered display name from their requested one for the sake of sanity. Or maybe we just alter the colour of each participant’s name so that there is no close colour and naming combination.

Contacting someone for the first time?

So you obtained someone’s contact information and you want to engage in a one-to-one discussion with them. Maybe they accept unsolicited messages, maybe not.

Signing and vouching?

So you enter a discussion with someone you already know. Then they add someone they know. Are they required to vouch for them by signing their identification? If they do vouch for them, what are they vouching?



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