Tag Archives: .au

Policy Reviews Underway For .AU and .US

Reviews are underway for both .au, to review dispute resolution policy, and .us, for the policies and requirements for the contract renewal that is due to take place later in 2013.

In .au, auDA has a consultation of the the Dispute Resolution Policy (auDRP) underway, and for which the comment period has been extended to 28 February. The goal of the auDRP is to provide a cheaper, speedier alternative to litigation for the resolution of disputes between the registrant of a .au domain name and a party with competing rights in the domain name.

The auDRP commenced on 1 August 2002 and there have been 300 proceedings lodged to date. A ten year review of the auDRP is currently underway to ensure that it remains an effective and appropriate dispute resolution mechanism.

An Issues Paper, available here, was released in November 2012 for public comment.

For .us, the NTIA who administers the contract for ccTLD for the United States is seeking input from interested parties on the policies and requirements that should govern the .us TLD.

The current contract expires on 31 August, 2013. The NTIA has advised that given the expiration date of this contract, the NTIA will utilise the comments received in response to their call for comments in the procurement process leading to the award of a new .us TLD contract.

Comments are due by 4 March, 2013.

More information is available from the NTIA website here.

Canadians Express Strong Preference For .CA Domains As ccTLD Grows Strongly

Canadians prefer their own .CA ccTLD over .COM a new report from the Canadian Internet Registration Authority (CIRA) has found.In the report from the .CA registry, both businesses and individuals expressed a preference for their own ccTLD. For business, 49 percent of Canadians strongly preferred a .CA domain for their website versus 17 percent for .COM while 54 percent of individuals expressed a preference for .CA versus 10 percent for .COM, the .CA Factobook released this week finds.Additionally, 89 percent of online Canadians believe it is important for Canadians to have a .CA domain, and 75 percent of them prefer to support Canadian businesses whenever possible.The top reasons given for preferring a .CA domain name by users was that it is a Canadian organisation, honest, trusted, safe, secure, credible and relevant.The results are consistent with other ccTLDs that have released similar surveys. In a similar study, Nominet found Britons prefer .UK domains. In the Nominet survey they found 81 percent of respondents preferred .UK websites when presented with a choice of a .UK or .COM domain in search results. The main reasons given by respondents were that it would be more likely to be a UK based company and have more relevance with prices in sterling and acceptable delivery charges.The CIRA report also found that .CA is one of the fastest growing TLDs in the world, ranking fourth among its country code top level domain (ccTLD) counterparts from 2007 to 2012 behind .FR (France), .AU (Australia) and .BR (Brazil) with over 50 percent growth in this period. Other ccTLDs growing by more than 50 percent during this period were .NL (Netherlands) and .SE (Sweden).The growth of .CA is particularly impressive as unlike many other ccTLDs such as .DE, .CO and .TK, there are Canadian presence requirements to register a .CA domain. Canadians repeatedly report that they want to do business and/or connect with other Canadians so the presence requirements mean that it is more likely that when visiting a .CA website, it is going to have a Canadian connection.The market share of .CA within Canada is also growing as more and more Canadians are choosing their own ccTLD. Over the last five years .CA’s market share has increased from 21 per cent to 30 per cent, for the most part at the expense of .COM.The report also looked at gTLD and ccTLD registrations per capita. Canada, like the United States, is one of the few countries where .COM have a higher rate of registrations per capita than their respective ccTLDs – .CA and .US respectively.The countries/ccTLDs with the highest proportion of domain name registrations per capita are .NL with over 400 registrations for every 1000 people with just under 300 of these registrations for .NL domain names and the remaining for gTLD registrations.Second is .DE (Germany) with around 280 registrations per 1000 people, of which around 190 are .DE domains and the remaining for gTLDs. Following is .UK (also around 280 registrations/1000 with 170 .UK), .US (260 and minimal .US registrations) and then Australia whose registrations are reasonably evenly divided between .AU and gTLDs with around 220 domains registered per 1000 people. Following is .NO (Norway), .SE (Sweden) and then .CA.IPv6 deployment has been slow within Canada, as in most other countries. The report notes that at present, IPv6 has still barely penetrated the .CA market, but as deployment intensifies, especially around World IPv6 Launch Day each June, CIRA says it can be expected to see these numbers rise steadily.Other findings of the report include:

  • Canadians rank first in the world when it comes to internet usage, spending an average of 45 hours per month online
  • Canadians spend more for broadband speed than 19 other countries
  • Canada’s internet economy accounted for three percent of Canada’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2012, totalling $49 billion
  • Per viewer, Canada leads the world in viewing online video.

The full report is available online at www.cira.ca/factbook/2013/index.html.

CcTLD Updates: .au, .cr, .id, .nl, .ru, .sg

Following the 2010 Names Policy Panel, auDA, the .au policy and regulatory body, has announced they will be implementing some of the Panel’s recommendations.

There are two main policy changes. One relates to domain monetisation in .com.au and .net.au, which sees the policy rules in effect “incorporated into the Domain Name Eligibility and Allocation Policy Rules for Open 2LDs at Schedules C (com.au) and E (net.au).”

The second relates to the little used .id.au 2LD, previously open only to individuals using their actual name or nickname. Now registrants will be able to register a domain name in the 2LD that relates to “a personal interest or hobby of the registrant.”

NIC Costa Rica announced that on 16 October 2012, the registries from Germany (.de), Brazil (.br) and Czech Republic (.cz) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with NIC Costa Rica (.cr). In their announcement NIC Costa Rica notes “the agreements allows for mutually beneficial projects such as: promote the exchange of expertise, share best practices related to management, strategy and business models, work together on initiatives that can lead to more efficient processes among other projects.”

The registry for .id domain names (Indonesia) said there is a good chance the ccTLD will become the largest in south east Asia. According to a Tech In Asia report,  Indonesia’s 103,882 .id domains are still outnumbered by Singapore’s .sg and Malaysia’s .my domains, which have 144,591 and 206,663 registered domains respectively.” The ccTLD has seen a 62.5 percent increase in registration in 2012 with the registry, PANDI, forecasting a growth rate of up to 170 percent in 2013 which, if it happens, would mean there would be 300,000 more new .id domain names at the end of 2013.

The Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs and SIDN have jointly written to ICANN on the subject of last resort redelegation. The move is linked to contingency arrangements that the ministry and SIDN made in the 2008 Covenant on Safeguarding the .nl Domain, with a view to ensuring the continuity and stability of the .nl domain under all circumstances. The letter informs ICANN about the Covenant and about the contingency arrangements made at the national level, in case a last resort redelegation should ever be necessary.

On 19 December, 2012, the Coordination Center for TLD RU/РФ hosted a press conference on the “Russian Domain Space 2012: the bottom line”. The press conference looked at the achievement os 2012 and emerging future trends.

Issues covered were the stability of Russia’s TLDs, .ru and .рф, the growth in registrations of both TLDs to go past a combined total of five million, the safety of the DNS and DNSSEC and Russian applications for new gTLDs.

And the Coordination Center for TLD RU also announced the Russian Domains stats portal now enables to compare the domain zones in a highly visual mode. Compare Data will prove useful for web analysts, media and other Internet community members as well as for the members of the domain industry.

The Singaporean registry, SGNIC, announced that from 2 January 2013, all new businesses and companies registered with the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) via its BizFile system on or after 5 October 2012, will save at least S$30 for the first year of registration for their first .sg domain name (ending with “.com.sg” or “.sg”).

In another SGNIC announcement, from 1 to 31 January 2013, a selected group of Premium Domain Names (“PDNs”) will be released for application at a base price ranging from $642 to $21,400 (including GST). If the name has multiple applications, it will be allocated to the applicant with the highest bid.

.AU and .IE Announce Funding For Projects To Assist Internet Development

The .AU policy and regulatory body and .IE registry have announced funding for a wide range of projects that are intended to assist the development of the internet in Australia and Ireland respectively.

In Australia, auDA announced their Foundation will fund a PhD thesis that enables Indigenous communities to access and use three dimensional (3D) models of Australian landscapes. Another project that won funding will explore the use of the internet by young people at risk of self-harm or suicide to seek help.

This year twelve projects were awarded a total of A$371,431, including the funding of two three-year PhD scholarships, taking the total number of projects funded to 84 over six annual funding rounds totalling $1,657,769.

“We were delighted by the number of applications we received, many of which were exemplary,” auDA CEO Chris Disspain said in a statement. “We feel that funding these initiatives could significantly improve the lives of many Australians through their creative use of the internet.”

Meanwhile in Ireland, IEDR’s OPTIMISE Fund announced funding for a total of 15 companies to raise awareness of low levels of e-commerce activity by Irish SMEs and micro-enterprises. The funding also aims to provide practical assistance to a targeted number of companies to upgrade their online presence and grow their business using the internet as a sales channel.

Each of the 15 winners will be provided with practical assistance to begin the process of upgrading their existing online presence to fully featured websites which incorporate e-commerce functionality and other facilities designed to support business development. The intention is that recipients will be better placed to harness the potential of the internet as a 24 hour sales and marketing channel and gain a competitive advantage.

Recipients will also receive up to 11 days professional technical and marketing support to allow them to plan and execute a major e-commerce upgrade.

The winners of both funding rounds are below.

From auDA:

  • Hello Sunday Morning
  • Prahran Mission UnitingCare
  • RMIT University
  • Reef Check Foundation
  • University of South Australia
  • WorkVentures
  • University of the Sunshine Coast
  • Monash Indigenous Centre, Monash University
  • Ballarat City Council
  • Guide Dogs Victoria
  • Deaf Services Queensland
  • Griffith University.

From IEDR:

  • Catering Equipment
  • IFA Telecom Ltd.
  • Waterford Technologies
  • Tour America
  • Parade Ring
  • Just Dance
  • Project 51
  • Rossmore Furniture
  • Gaga Baby Ltd
  • Doolin Cave
  • Oideas Gael
  • Morris Oil Co. Ltd.
  • Sheridan Insurances Ltd.
  • Digital Business Services Ltd.

Australian Aftermarket Booms With Hobart.com.au Selling For $65K

The Australian domain name aftermarket continues to grow strongly with the sale last week of Hobart.com.au for A$65,000, which was originally bought for $875 in 2007.

The Australian aftermarket came into being following changes to registration policies in 2008. Prior to this, domain names could only be “sold” when the domain name was part of a transaction such as the sale of a business.

The domain was one of a number of geographical domains David Lye, an Australian domainer, picked up in 2007.

Reflecting this growth, Lye told Domain Pulse the price of domain names has exploded in recent years.

“Australian domains have shown incredible growth in the four years or so since prohibition on trading was relaxed,” said Lye. “Domain registration numbers have more than doubled but values of domains trading on the secondary market have exploded. In fact, the most comprehensive market data available which takes into account repeat sales of domains shows domain sale prices have almost tripled just in the last two years.”

Australian Total Domain Sale Value Last 36 Months - Netfleet

Four Millionth .RU Domain Registered

RU Coordination Center logoThe four millionth .RU (Russian Federation) domain name has been registered with total registrations approaching 4.004 million as this article is published.

.RU is the fifth largest ccTLD behind .DE (Germany) with 15.2 million registrations, followed by .TK (Tokelau) however the registry does not publish registration statistics for its free domain names. Third is .UK (United Kingdom – 10.2m) then .NL (Netherlands – 5.04m), .RU, .CN (China – 4.13m as of 31 July), .EU (European Union – 3.67m), .BR (Brazil – 3.05m), .AR (Argentina – figures unknown) and then .AU, currently with 2.52m registrations.

More to come.

.AU Passes 2.5 Million Registered Domains

The number of registered .AU (Australia) domain names passed the 2.5 million mark in late August, auDA and AusRegistry announced.Since passing two million registrations in March 2011, the .AU namespace has grown at a steady pace thanks, the regulatory and policy body and registry note, to the combined efforts of accredited registrars in promoting .AU as Australia’s home on the internet. Approximately 86 percent of all .AU domain names are registered under .com.au.According to Verisign’s latest Domain Name Industry Brief, .AU is the tenth largest ccTLD. The largest is .DE (Germany) with almost 15.19 million registrations today. Second is probably .TK (Tokelau) however the registry does not publish registration statistics for its free domain names, followed by .UK (United Kingdom – 10.2m), .NL (Netherlands – 5.03m), .RU (Russian Federation – 3.99m) .CN (China – 4.13m as of 31 July), .EU (European Union – 3.65m), .BR (Brazil – 3.05m), .AR (Argentina – figures unknown) and then .AU, currently with 2.51m registrations.

AuDA Seeks Comments on .AU Accountability and Transparency Framework

AuDA, the .AU policy and regulatory body, is seeking public comment on a draft Accountability and Transparency Framework from members, stakeholders and other interested parties.

In April 2011 the auDA Board commissioned Westlake Consulting Ltd (WCL) to conduct an independent review into the governance of .AU. WCL provided its final report to the Board in December 2011, and the Board published its response in February 2012.

One of WCL’s recommendations was for auDA to “develop and publish an Accountability and Transparency Framework, broadly similar to that developed by ICANN.” The Board accepted the recommendation and charged its Governance, Board Succession and Remuneration Committee to oversee the implementation.

The Committee has approved a draft Accountability and Transparency Framework for public consultation.

The closing date for comments is 31 July 2012.

auDA industry panel proposes “world-first” security standard – seeks community views

The.au Domain Administration (auDA) 2012 Industry Advisory Panel has today proposed the introduction of a mandatory security standard for all existing and potential registrars in the .au domain space, a “world first” requirement.
The Panel has been tasked by the auDA Board to review the structure and regulation of the Australian domain name industry. The Panel is comprised of a range of industry stakeholders, and is part of the open and consultative mechanisms auDA uses to develop and refine policies for .au.

The Panel is considering the adoption of an auDA Information Security Standard (ISS) aimed at helping registrars to manage and improve the security of their businesses, as well as protecting the stability and integrity of the .au domain space.

The proposal is contained in a public Issues Paper, the first of two rounds of public consultation to be undertaken by the Panel.

The Panel is also considering:

  • The best method for selecting and appointing a registry operator prior to the expiry of the current contract with AusRegistry Pty Ltd on 30 June 2014;
  • The accreditation of registrars, particularly with respect to overseas-based registrars; and
  • The status of resellers in .au and the possibility of permitting bulk reseller transfers and the listing of resellers in WHOIS.

”The Panel is reviewing a wide range of important issues and policies relating to the operation of Australia’s ‘.au’ namespace”, said the Panel’s independent Chair, Craig Ng.

“Our recommendations need to reinforce and promote .au’s positive reputation, ensure certainty of service provision and a level playing field for all industry participants and deliver the best value and protection for consumers. To help us do that, we need to receive as much community feedback as possible on what the future of the Australian domain name industry may look like.”

The Panel’s Issues Paper is available at this website. The closing date for submissions is Friday 20 July 2012.

This auDA announcement was sourced from:

Australia’s .AU Contributes $475m Per Year And 4300 Jobs To Economy

Australia’s .AU country code Top Level Domain is responsible for more than 4300 full time jobs and contributed $475 million to the Australian economy a report by Deloitte Access Economics has found.

The report, Economic and Statistical Analysis of the .au Domain Range [available as a PDF here and here], was commissioned by the .AU registry, AusRegistry, and the .AU regulator, auDA, and is the first to examine the economic value and impact of the .AU ccTLD on Australian Internet users, businesses and registrants.

The report revealed exponential growth in the number of registered .AU domain names over the last decade, which reached a total of 2.3 million in 2011. This represents a 600 per cent increase since 2002, with 60,000 new .AU domains being registered every month.

Activity directly associated with registration and hosting of .AU domains accounted for 57 per cent, or $269 million, of the total contribution to Australia’s economy. Services such as web design and infrastructure provision accounted for the balance.

Additionally, the report found that 58 per cent of the total economic contribution of $475 million for .AU domain name registration and operation accrued to employees, indicating an overall relatively labour-intensive industry.

The report echoes a similar report for the Austrian registry, nic.at, in 2011 that found the .AT domain names contributed €13.5 million (around A$16.6m today) to the Austrian economy in 2009, with the contribution growing each year. The study found that for every €1 spent on .AT domain names €3.10 was added to the Austrian economy. When additional services were factored in this figure grew to €14.89.

Benefits of .AU were also spread around the country even if registrants of .AU domain names are focused around the major population centres at a greater than proportional rate with 80 per cent of .AU registrations registered in major cities, compared to only 68 per cent of the total population residing in these major cities.

But the benefits are not confined to major centres. When the number of .AU registrations are compared against the number of businesses by region, the density of domain names is highest for businesses in very remote Australia, with 0.67 registrations per business. The report suggests this may be indicative of the fact that these businesses are more reliant on communications technology in their operations.

The report notes this is a somewhat surprising result with typical rates of connection to the internet are lower in very remote Australia, which reflects the overall lower access to quality internet services in these regions.

The report also identifies a number of changes that may influence future growth in registrations. These include the introduction of new TLDs as well as internationalised domain names, the increasing importance of search engines for internet users seeking information and the role of social media and group buying websites in influencing consumer purchase decisions.

When looking at businesses with a web presence, which includes all domain names – not just businesses with .AU registrations, the report found the arts and recreation services was the sector with the highest proportion of businesses with a web presence, and hence domain name, with around two-thirds of businesses. Other sectors with more than half of businesses online were professional, scientific and technical services, financial and insurance services, rental, hiring and real estate services, wholesale trade and manufacturing. Overall, 40 per cent of Australian businesses reported having a web presence in 2009-10.

At the other end of the scale web presence remains very low among agriculture, forestry and fishing businesses at just 11 per cent, and in the transport, postal and warehousing sector, at 22 per cent.

Ric Simes, Deloitte Access Economics Director, said the report confirmed the value to the Australian economy of the .au domain and the importance of a web presence for businesses.

“The Internet has clearly become the starting point for consumer research and purchasing decisions,” he said. “The contribution to the Australian economy of the industry administering .au is significant, particularly in terms of employment, and this will continue to grow with the ongoing shift to e-commerce.”

Chris Disspain, CEO of auDA, attributed the health of .AU to its policy environment and the trust this engenders in Australian users.

“.AU is a vibrant marketplace, with over 30 registrars competing on price and services. But beyond this, the safeguards we have in place to protect both Australian businesses and end users, make .AU a signpost of trust and security online,” Mr Disspain said.

Adrian Kinderis, CEO of AusRegistry, said Australian business owners continue to place significant value in .AU names.

“We are continually developing the .au namespace to increase its profile, promote its benefits and drive greater registration volumes. These actions have created a strong appetite within the Australian business community, resulting in .AU evolving into the domain name of choice for Australian business. The findings of this report highlight the importance of .AU to the Australian economy and celebrate the combined efforts of auDA and AusRegistry,” Mr Kinderis said.

To register your .AU domain name, check out Asia Registry here.