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New .AU Australian Domain (Direct Registration) | Get Fact Up #75

“On 18 April 2016, the Board of .au Domain Administration (auDA) approved second level domain name registration in .au, known as direct registration. Direct registration will give Australian users of the Internet the choice of registering a name directly before the dot in .au, for example, 

The existing 2LDs will continue to operate as dedicated domains for businesses, not for profits, government, education and individuals.”

“The opening of a .au domain namespace is the most significant change to the .au DNS structure in 30 years. “

The auDA Board Convened and Published Document in October 17 titled “Implementation of Second Level Domain Name Registrations (Direct Registration)” which covered (1) the development of an implementation policy for direct registration; and (2) policy reform.


Extracts from

Item 15. There are three fundamental principles that underpin the .au domain name registration system: (1) no proprietary rights in a domain name, (2) no hierarchy of rights, and (3) first come, first served.

A registrant does not ‘own’ a domain name but has a licence to use and dispose of the domain name for a specified period.

A trademark owner has no better entitlement to a domain name than a business name owner. A registrant of a domain name in one 2LD has no greater entitlement to the same name in another 2LD than a third party or another 2LD registrant.

The first person that applies to register a domain name will be entitled to register the domain name, subject to the availability of the domain name.

Extract from:

Item 8. The Panel is considering giving existing registrants across all 2LDs priority to register the exact matching second level domain name;

But who gets priority is a little complicated and undecided.

Extracts from

Given the uncertainty around the launch date for direct registration, low awareness among the public about direct registration and the passage of more than 18 months since the announcement, it may be more equitable to select a cut-off date sometime in the future.

60. Choosing the 18 April 2016 Board announcement as the cut-off date for determining priority registrant rights will disadvantage registrants that have registered a third level domain name after this date.

The NZ and UK cut-off date was between 3- 6 months before the launch date. A later cutoff date may increase the number of conflicted names.


auDA are considering:

Extracts from

Item 61. A longest continuous registrant approach be adopted to resolve competing claims, because the choice of a later cut-off date will have less impact than if the lottery approach is adopted.

Item 62. The Panel is working on the assumption registrants of domain names across all 2LDs registered at the cut-off date will be eligible for priority registration.


Anybody with a second level domain such as the open domains, which are,,,, and

You can use this database to search for owners of domains


Extracts from;

8. The Panel invites written submissions by close of business on 4 March 2018. Submissions can be emailed to or by post to:

Policy Review Panel
c/o .au Domain Administration Ltd
PO Box 18315

9. All submissions will be made publicly available on the auDA website, unless marked confidential. In the absence of a clear indication that the submission is confidential, the Policy Review Panel will treat the submission as public. The Policy Review Panel will not consider nor publish anonymous submissions.


If you think the registrant is not eligible to hold their domain name under the Domain Name Eligibility and Allocation Policy Rules for the Open 2LDs breaches of the Prohibition on Misspellings Policy.


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