Changes to .au domain registration policy

In April this year, auDA, the domain name authority for the .au ccTLD (country-code Top Level Domain) used in Australia, announced (1) that their board had accepted a recommendation they allow registrations directly in the .au space. I.e. It will soon be possible to register funnelvision.au (no com, net or any other 2LD).

Google already considers ccTLDs as “more relevant in the appropriate country” (2), but will it differentiate between cc2LDs (country code second level domains) like .com.au and .net.au, and domains registered directly in the ccTLD space (.au)?

Nothing has been decided and details are sparse, so it’s not yet clear what will happen to the two most popular 2LDs (com and net). But you’d have to assume that, with the popularity other use-specific 2LDs such as org, edu and gov, this change cannot spell the end of the existing 2LD space, but will instead create another “green field” opportunity for new registrations, or for conflict and squatting.

In the meantime, my advice is to ensure you have both the .net.au and .com.au 2LD variants of your domain name before this change comes into effect.

(1) https://www.auda.org.au/news/auda-to-introduce-direct-registrations-in-au/ (2) https://webmasters.googleblog.com/2015/07/googles-handling-of-new-top-level.html

Paul Middleton

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Illawarra, NSW
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