Australia decides not to ban domain businesses

22.04.2019

The auDA registry, which manages Australia’s national domain .AU, has decided to allow direct registration of second-level domains. For many years, the registry only allowed registration of third-level domains, such as example.com.au or example.org.au. According to Domain Incite, existing 3LD registrants will be given “priority status” to register the exact-match 2LDs beginning October 1. If example.com.au and example.org.au were registered by different parties, priority would go to the one with the earliest registration date. There would be a six-month application window for registrants to lodge their claims, and after that the remaining domains would be available for everyone.

The registry rejected the proposal to ban domain businesses. It was reported earlier that the amendment package submitted to the auDA management included a clause that registrants with 100 or more domain names would have to prove that they did not purchase them for resale or “warehousing” (that is, parking). The proposal was criticized by the domain community, because it would completely ruin the domain business in Australia. However, the registry rejected the amendment, noting that it had not found any evidence that “warehousing” was harmful. In addition, the registry’s response says that this prohibition would target domain investors as holdings of trademark and brand owners that can register unlimited numbers of domains would be excluded from it.