auDA seeks public input as domain rules change

Australia's domain name regulator is to seek public input as it reviews the rules for registering certain types of Australian domains. In October .

Australia's domain name regulator is to seek public input as it reviews the rules for registering certain types of Australian domains.

In October .au Domain Administration (auDA) announced it was considering changing the "close and substantial connection rule", which allows companies to register domain names that are connected to their business in some way.

auDA's chief executive Chris Disspain told ZDNet Australia this week comment would soon be sought.

"We expect to run a public consultation early in the new year," he said.

The news comes as some portions of Australia's Internet community have intensified criticism on some companies allegedly using the close and substantial connection rule to register domain names for the primary purpose of capturing Web traffic and selling click-through advertising.

auDA cited this practice -- which sees domain names lie fallow without a Web site associated with them -- as one of the reasons it was considering changing the rule.

One Australian Web designer told ZDNet Australia she was personally tracking the actions of a party who owned a variety of domain names and had recently allocated them to a domain name server associated with this type of so-called 'pay-per-click' type of advertising.

Jess Latherson said she had noticed the domains had been moved because she was monitoring one for one of her clients.

She added she searched for the contact details of other domains she knew were owned by the party concerned and saw that they too had been moved.

"I'd suggest that this move ... of his domains to a pay per click domain name monetisation service signifies that the domains will not be used for actual Web sites but soley holding pages that earn revenue for him ... but don't benefit Australian Web users," Latherson concluded.

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