What's new

auDA - Online event to explain why Direct Registration is good for you

Bacon Farmer

Top Contributor
Rosemary was on the ABC the other day and got asked this question.

"Rebecca Levingston:

Why do we need a just plain .au?

Rosemary Sinclair:

Really to keep up with the innovation that we're seeing in the economy and Australian society, and none more so than during the last eighteen months of COVID we've seen people rush online to do all sorts of things they never imagined they'd be doing online, doing that really effectively. And while we've been planning this change since 2015, I think our timings pretty good in launching it next year. "

https://www.auda.org.au/speech/rosemary-sinclair-interview-abc-radio-brisbane-25-august-2021

That's a serious load of bull manure.

Apparently you can't innovate on a ".com.au" but record registrations of .com.au kind of disproves that theory but you know.... good timing.

"We've" been planning this since 2015. Ok so all the debate was a farce, kind of like the voting to change the constitution by the foreign employees of auDA's main contractor?
 
If you want a .au that has a contention then you will need to pay the application fee (Same price as renewal)

Assume that renewals are wholesale price is $8 (for the sake of easy math). So for argument's sake assume that. there are 200,000 domains in contention. So that is 2 people going for the same .au. So back of the envelope calculation says that will be 200,000 domains x 2 people x $8 = $3.2million revenue for auDA (no domains have been sold yet)

Now assume that (for argument sake) a further 1,000,000 domains (there is 3.3 million domains names under management) are required that people are protecting their IP or they just want a .au = 1,000,000 * $8 = $8 million in revenue. So by Q3 2022, there will be over $11 million in cash flow in auDA's door. This is almost equal to the entire Revenue from operations of $13.7 million in 2020. Then ongoing yearly renewals will increase by around 30%.

My numbers are back of the envelope calculations, but it gives you an understanding of the scope of this. auDA will almost double their income in 2022

The Australian public will pay more than double these figures as the registrars will add their margins. Now registrars handle the complaints process, auDA is not going to be paying for extra support staff.

As auDA is a non-profit organisation, I wonder what happens when they make such large profits? Maybe they give it all to Afilias for improving infrastructure? $200,000 funding boost to enhance the utility of the Internet?
 

Erwin

Top Contributor
An interesting take on the introduction is the restriction free approach .au has, as opposed to .com.au
There is a higher chance of restriction fee adoption and use. I would have liked to have seen a more lax approach for the other extensions (mainly .co.au)
 

Bacon Farmer

Top Contributor
This is why Netregistry/ARQ/Webcentral representatives on auDA committees argued for the introduction of .au - so current registrants will have to pay twice for their brand names, because they are rent seeking ---EXPLETIVE REMOVED---. Same for auDA and their sweet remuneration packages and bonuses. C'mon Department of Communications open your eyes!

1634527214119.png
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Drop.com.au

Top Contributor
An interesting take on the introduction is the restriction free approach .au has, as opposed to .com.au
There is a higher chance of restriction fee adoption and use. I would have liked to have seen a more lax approach for the other extensions (mainly .co.au)
This is the most important difference between the upcoming rollout of .au and the previously spoken about rollout of .nz or .uk.

To my knowledge there are no equivalent ccTLDs that has the equivalent of an ABN/ACN required for the commercial equivalent.

There is a high probability of big registrars offering the easy to register .au domain first and then upselling to the .com.au once the .au and web hosting has been paid for. This will allow them to secure a client before going down the more complicated path of selling a .com.au.
 

Drop.com.au

Top Contributor
If you want a .au that has a contention then you will need to pay the application fee (Same price as renewal)

Assume that renewals are wholesale price is $8 (for the sake of easy math). So for argument's sake assume that. there are 200,000 domains in contention. So that is 2 people going for the same .au. So back of the envelope calculation says that will be 200,000 domains x 2 people x $8 = $3.2million revenue for auDA (no domains have been sold yet)
There are only 60,000 domains in contention and 1/2 of those are owned by the same party so the real number is around 30,000 domains.
Now assume that (for argument sake) a further 1,000,000 domains (there is 3.3 million domains names under management) are required that people are protecting their IP or they just want a .au = 1,000,000 * $8 = $8 million in revenue. So by Q3 2022, there will be over $11 million in cash flow in auDA's door. This is almost equal to the entire Revenue from operations of $13.7 million in 2020. Then ongoing yearly renewals will increase by around 30%.
auDA does not collect the whole fee for a domain registration, 1/3 goes to the Registry operator. and then the auDA portion to broken into a Foundation fee as well as a ICANN fees (from memory).
My numbers are back of the envelope calculations, but it gives you an understanding of the scope of this. auDA will almost double their income in 2022
I don't see it doubling off the back of this as the maths is wrong plus they are also going to spend big on advertising for this.
The Australian public will pay more than double these figures as the registrars will add their margins. Now registrars handle the complaints process, auDA is not going to be paying for extra support staff.
VentraIP have announced recently that they are going to do .au at cost price for the first year so at least a fair portion of .au domains will not be doubled.
As auDA is a non-profit organisation, I wonder what happens when they make such large profits? Maybe they give it all to Afilias for improving infrastructure? $200,000 funding boost to enhance the utility of the Internet?
^ The funding boost via the Foundation is not going to Afilias, Afilias is paid a set portion of each domain registration be it .com.au or .au and they do all the heavy lifting in terms of running the DNS. The foundation is subject to audits and I cannot see your assertions being based on fact.
 

Drop.com.au

Top Contributor
This is why Netregistry/ARQ/Webcentral representatives on auDA committees argued for the introduction of .au - so current registrants will have to pay twice for their brand names, because they are rent seeking ---EXPLETIVE REMOVED---. Same for auDA and their sweet remuneration packages and bonuses. C'mon Department of Communications open your eyes
Learning new words today... so it turns out "rent seeking" is defined on wikipedia as "the effort to increase one's share of existing wealth without creating new wealth".

Would you care to provide any proof that the introduction of Direct Registration is not going to create any new wealth? auDA has provided a business case on how .au will provide more opportunities for early non-commercial use and or pre-commercial use as well as advantages for existing registrants to make use of shorter domains names.

The price of a .au for a current registrant is going to be about 1/10th of the annual cost of the toilet paper they provide in their bathrooms yet holds the potential to deliver actual customers to their online businesses.
 

Bacon Farmer

Top Contributor
Surely, you can't be serious?

Would you like to provide proof that auDA have provided a bona fide business case? They haven't provided one yet despite what the titles on documents might say.

They have literally provided no legitimate evidence of any proof of demand based on the full facts.

They have relied on flawed conflicted third party (supply side) evidence including a survey of a single question. The infamous single question survey by the conflicted third party that sells domains - "would you buy a .au domain if available?"

How intellectually and ethically bankrupt can you get?

All of your conjured (by auDA?) weak examples of need, can be satisfied by getting an ABN which is not actually a serious barrier. The take up of .id.au and .com.au (not to mention very low demand of .net.au domains) completely undermines any demand (tiny) and supply issues (no supply issues - record domain sales of .com.au over last 12 months right?).

The shorter domains argument is monumentally weak and can be countered by arguing that .com.au should just be changed to .au for no cost to current .com.au owners.

Your "yeah but" cost argument, shifts the focus away from it being a completely unnecessary cost. And it's not just the cost of the extra domains. It's the other hidden costs.

Such as the costs of fighting to protect brands in other legal areas including passing off and having to get trade marks. The cost of engaging a lawyer. I'd suggest it costs the equivalent about 50 domains to talk to a lawyer and probably another 100 to just send a threatening letter.

You would think all of the new domain rules (you know the ones that nobody can understand and are 10 times the length of the old ones and that they have to publish explanatory brochures to explain the new rules....) were written by a domain lawyer to profit from the ensuing lawyer heaven (more Ferraris on order?).

Now lets talk about the contested domains and the wrangling that's going to cost the .com.au owner. What amount do you reckon insurance.com.au owner is going to offer the other domain owners to give up their rights to the .au version? Do you reckon they'll just say nah you take it. The argument that it's only a very few actual domains in contest is no salve for the owners of ones that are.

auDA have a major goal of protecting the integrity and public trust of the .com.au environment but with the intended relaxation of requirements to get .au (direct registrations), this is a massive own goal. UBU's are an issue right or you used to think so.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Drop.com.au

Top Contributor
Surely, you can't be serious?

Would you like to provide proof that auDA have provided a bona fide business case? They haven't provided one yet despite what the titles on documents might say.
If you will not accept their documents then I cannot provide further proof
They have literally provided no legitimate evidence of any proof of demand based on the full facts.

They have relied on flawed conflicted third party (supply side) evidence including a survey of a single question. The infamous single question survey by the conflicted third party that sells domains - "would you buy a .au domain if available?"
I assume you know they took these allegations seriously and undertook their own survey via an uninvolved third party to see if the Netregistry survey was flawed and it came back with very similar results right? We have to at some point conceded that this has been looked into.
How intellectually and ethically bankrupt can you get?

All of your conjured (by auDA?) weak examples of need, can be satisfied by getting an ABN which is not actually a serious barrier. The take up of .id.au and .com.au (not to mention very low demand of .net.au domains) completely undermines any demand (tiny) and supply issues (no supply issues - record domain sales of .com.au over last 12 months right?).
.id.au is a terrible extension as no one recognised it as a real domain name, it used to fail the regular expression parsing tests of valid emails all the time.

With regards to tiny demand... it has been reported that about 30% of attempted purchases of .com.au domains fail during the shopping cart process at the ABN barrier, with many customers then deciding to use a .xyz or .info domain instead. This loss of Australian businesses to non-au namespaces is not good for anyone in our business and is terrible in terms of regulatory oversight and consumer protection.

The shorter domains argument is monumentally weak and can be countered by arguing that .com.au should just be changed to .au for no cost to current .com.au owners.
This would be much too significant a shift to force on everyone at the same time, making a different namespace available is much more sensible and allows people to chose and or to use both in the future
Your "yeah but" cost argument, shifts the focus away from it being a completely unnecessary cost. And it's not just the cost of the extra domains. It's the other hidden costs.

Such as the costs of fighting to protect brands in other legal areas including passing off and having to get trade marks. The cost of engaging a lawyer. I'd suggest it costs the equivalent about 50 domains to talk to a lawyer and probably another 100 to just send a threatening letter.
I agree on lawyers being expensive but I don't see how .au is different to .net.au or id.au or .org.au in that regards and we have lawyers and stuff dealing with that all the time already. It is not like this is a new problem.
You would think all of the new domain rules (you know the ones that nobody can understand and are 10 times the length of the old ones and that they have to publish explanatory brochures to explain the new rules....) were written by a domain lawyer to profit from the ensuing lawyer heaven (more Ferraris on order?).
You are right, the new rules are tricky and have some rules that are literally enforceable, auDA is doing the best they can with the rules and in my experience that are taking into account the real world more and more every day.
Now lets talk about the contested domains and the wrangling that's going to cost the .com.au owner. What amount do you reckon insurance.com.au owner is going to offer the other domain owners to give up their rights to the .au version? Do you reckon they'll just say nah you take it. The argument that it's only a very few actual domains in contest is no salve for the owners of ones that are.
If insurance.com.au wants to lock out insurance.net.au from the .au then they can just pay $10 per year to keep the domain locked up. They don't "have" to pay anything to the owner of the .net.au. In reality companies are going to try to get others to give up their rights. We bought drop.net.au just recently for exactly that reason. In reality if the .net.au owner had wanted more money than the cost of some lawyers and and auDRP then we might have not bought it, or if the auDRP route was even too expensive we could have just tied it up for the next 5 years for $50. It was not a big drama and was way less expensive or risky to our business than when the aircon unit started blowing rainwater into the server room.

auDA have a major goal of protecting the integrity and public trust of the .com.au environment but with the intended relaxation of requirements to get .au (direct registrations), this is a massive own goal. UBU's are an issue right or you used to think so.
The requirements around .au are pretty hardcore by the way... they require us to get passport numbers and or drivers licenses and then to certify those against a third party data source. So pretty similar to opening a bank account. So this is going to actually be a tighter set or requirements than the current "just pick an ABN out of thin air" requirements for .com.au

The UBUs on .com.au, .org.au and id.au domains is getting worse by the day and even with auDA's pattern matching experts working we found a few thousand UBUs just last week and reported them to auDA. We even found a few hundred this week and are in the process of reporting them.

The problems never seem to change that much over the years, they just seem to move around a little.
 

Bacon Farmer

Top Contributor
auDA's surveys didn't come back with similar results at all. They identified that the majority of stakeholders had no idea about direct registration or the ramifications (brand protection and defensive registrations) and they couldn't because there were no tabled new rules to make an informed decision on.

This is what legal experts are recommending [https://www.gtlaw.com.au/knowledge/new-au-licensing-rules-direct-registration-are-here]

"You should otherwise instruct your domain name registrar to watch for launch and register any preferred names as soon as registrations open as registration will otherwise be on a first come, first served basis.

We recommend you allocate a budget for online brand protection before the launch of registrations in the <.au> space as a fresh round of cybersquatting is anticipated. We also recommend you actively monitor new domain name registrations in the dot.au space, and enforce your trade mark rights under the auDRP to recover names in this space that include your brands."

I'm sure the lawyers who were involved in pushing direct registrations had no idea this would happen.
 

Drop.com.au

Top Contributor
auDA's surveys didn't come back with similar results at all. They identified that the majority of stakeholders had no idea about direct registration or the ramifications (brand protection and defensive registrations) and they couldn't because there were no tabled new rules to make an informed decision on.
The rules are out now. They negatively affect at most 60,000 domains/people/companies.

So the problem with any survey is that there are only 60,000 grumpy people in a country of 25 million people who are going to need to talk to a lawyer and or look at auDRP and or look to buy the competitors domain. It is mathematically unlikely that you could get a majority of randomly selected people to say this is a bad idea. Even if you surveyed only existing registrants, 96% are not negatively affected.

Only if you survey Domain Investors and the lawyers servicing medium to large companies with generic domain names. You will get a response that this is a bad idea.

With this said, inside our bubble here (we are all Domain Investors or service Domain Investors) it is a logical that this looks like a bad idea.
It is an especially bad idea because we did not get rights for .com.au holders and it is turning into a fight.

This is what legal experts are recommending [https://www.gtlaw.com.au/knowledge/new-au-licensing-rules-direct-registration-are-here]

"You should otherwise instruct your domain name registrar to watch for launch and register any preferred names as soon as registrations open as registration will otherwise be on a first come, first served basis.

We recommend you allocate a budget for online brand protection before the launch of registrations in the <.au> space as a fresh round of cybersquatting is anticipated. We also recommend you actively monitor new domain name registrations in the dot.au space, and enforce your trade mark rights under the auDRP to recover names in this space that include your brands."
Lawyers also say this about .net.au so there is not really a new problem being caused here. Corporations also have far more problems with typos than with exact match domains in parallel namespaces.

I'm sure the lawyers who were involved in pushing direct registrations had no idea this would happen.

I think that the lawyers who pushed for this assumed they the .com.au would get first rights and or the oldest domain would get first rights. No one I spoke to predicted the complicated solution which evolved. Lawyers are often also sheep in wolves clothing, they make money out of two parties fighting, so their articles are often designed to make them look like they don't want something even though they actually rely on it for a living.
 

jamesrayers

Regular Member
I can completely understand why portfolio holders would be against the change.

But for newer investors into AU it's actually a big opportunity.
 

Bacon Farmer

Top Contributor
I don't think the conflict is limited to the 60,000 conflicted domains at all. There are the actual identified conflicts (60,000) and the potential (3,000,000?) conflicts about to occur.

1. It affects all business owners (mostly small businesses - who do they vote for?) who will now have to defensively register the .au version of their websites.

2. And if they don't then they will potentially need to hire a lawyer to scare off new registrants with their name in the .au version.

bigbank.com.au (current) vs
bigbank.au (new registrant)

or

smallbusiness.com.au vs
smallbusiness.au

I'd say these addresses are confusingly similar especially given the majority of Australia have no idea they can be two separate entities (.net.au have been there from the beginning so it's not the same).

I think the lawyers especially the ones that wrote the new rules or were on committees or wielded influence, could see $.... I mean conflict, on the horizon from the get go. Simple rules means less conflict and ours are so complex now they have to publish explanatory brochures that are themselves extremely long. Complexity breeds confusion and opportunities for legal action which all lawyers know despite what they may "say".

I doubt it's an opportunity for new investors because the vast majority of valuable keyword domains will be double registered (.com.au and .au) by their owners.

If I owned a substantial amount of keyword domains, I would:

1. High value domains - register the .au,
2. Mid value domains - not register the .au, and
3. Low value domains - drop to pay for the new .au domains.

The breakeven point for keyword domains has increased by a factor of 3 - the cost of the .com.au, the cost of the .au and the cost of the rights.

Which means the only keyword domains dropping will be lower value domains.

I can see opportunists registering BobsMowing.au and holding it for ransom though. And there will be some squatter, that will do that.
 

Community sponsors

Domain Parking Manager

AddMe Reputation Management

Digital Marketing Experts

Catch Expired Domains

Domain Aftermatket

Members online

Forum statistics

Threads
10,932
Messages
91,153
Members
2,282
Latest member
molbine417

Latest posts

Industry and community links

Top