Australian Community Initiative Celebrates 100th Community Domain Registrations

An initiative to encourage Australian localities to develop websites that represent their community has reached its 100th domain name registration with Talgarno, a town in the state of Victoria, reaching the milestone.

The Community Geographic Domain Name initiative is a world first that includes the town name, state name and country: for example www.broome.wa.au, www.buderim.qld.au, www.coffsharbour.nsw.au or www.ballarat.vic.au.

“The 100th application is an important milestone for communities Australia wide, but this is only the tip of the iceberg,” said Leonie Dunbar, General Manager of .au Community Domains (auCD). “An additional 300 communities have registered their interest in applying for a community website and we are currently averaging an application every day.”

Communities have often found it difficult to get the domain names for their local community for promoting tourism and community activities. Before registering a Community Geographic Domain Name, it has to demonstrated their is broad support amongst the local community meaning for the registration of the domain name, and development of a website.

The domain names provide the start for communities to be able to provide websites to showcase all their town has to offer in tourism, to create disaster prevention/control plans and as a communication forum for members of the town and wider community.

One community to register their Community Geographic Domain Name was Buderim on the Sunshine Coast in Queensland. Their website is averaging over 20,000 hits per month at their community website www.buderim.qld.au and has contributed to tourism in the region.

Another community to take advantage of the unique domain name for their community was Wyndham in Western Australia (www.wyndham.wa.au), a remote small community, who set an example to other communities to show that isolation and low population are not barriers to being part of the Australian online community to link the rapidly growing far-flung community in ways not previously experienced on the internet, enabling residents to find out what is happening across the community.

The domain names are not available for registration by member of the public as per other .au domain names, and local communities have to show there is broad support from the community for the initiative before registering the domain name.

To assist local communities get their website up and running more quickly, auCD is providing their ‘Community Site in a Box’ content management system, a website building tool free to applicants until the end of 2009 which includes hosting and unlimited issuing of geographical email addresses.

Applications for Community Geographic Domain Names are still open and community groups can find all the information they need to apply by contacting .au Community Domains – see www.aucd.org.au for more information.

.au Community Domains was established by auDA (.au Domain Administration Ltd) to facilitate the development of Community Geographic Domain Names (CGDNs).