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auDA Unrest Continues: ‘Hard Politics in a Geeky World’

Another board member has quit the auDA board according to an article in Monday’s Australian Financial Review, one of Australia’s leading business newspapers. The most recent uncovering, that of Leonie Walsh standing down 4 weeks ago, appears to have been kept secret with the newspaper discovering Walsh’s departure by digging through ASIC, Australia’s corporate, markets and financial services regulator, records.

“Following the resignation of chairman Stuart Benjamin on the eve of the SGM [special general meeting], two relatively recent appointments to auDA's 11-member board have since quit,” Myriam Robin writes in the AFR’s Rear Window column. “auDA has so far made public only one of these two departures, that of controversially appointed Michaella Richards (the board issued a defence of Dr Richards' appointment on August 7 then called for nominations to replace her on August 16), yet ASIC documents lodged on August 22 show that another director, Leonie Walsh, stood down on the very same day (August 14). No reason was given for Richards' resignation and the body's corporate secretary says that rumours of a fourth deserter are inaccurate.”

As has been discovered by Domainer recently, and which Robin writes, auDA has moved its offices to new digs at Harry Stamoulis' 1 Collins Street. The move from the Melbourne suburb of Carlton, where the organisation resided for over a decade, appears to be something the organisation was keeping secret. Its contact details are listed on their website as a post office box number and no street address.

The AFR notes how “one auDA member – DomainShield operator Anthony Peake – has even shuttered part of his business in protest at auDA's inability to implement agreed reforms – specifically how individuals can register .au domains.”

The article concludes “a bland corner of a geeky world this one may be, but they sure play their politics as hard as anyone. Which is why we'll be watching this space…”