SYDNEY (ZDNet Australia)--In future, Australians may have access to a greater number of domain names, after the board of the domain name space regulatory body, auDA, approved a report by its Name Policy Advisory Panel.
The report assessed the possibility of creating new second level domains (2LDs) in the .au domain. These would operate alongside the existing 2LDs such as com.au, net.au, and gov.au.
According to Chris Disspain, CEO of auDA, it is now a matter of carrying out consultation to see if there's actually demand for an increased number of domain names. Disspain anticipates this is unlikely to take place until some time next year, due to more pressing issues such as the introduction of competition later this year.
The panel also looked at reserving geographic domain names for use by the relevant community. Disspain says currently geographic names are prohibited in the .com.au and .net.au space, although some are being used because they were issued before the ban was put in place.
This also needs to go to public consultation, probably sometime next year. "The method of who gets the names--that's something we need to talk to people about," Disspain says.
In addition, auDA has put a policy in place to resolve disputes about cybersquatting and bad faith practices. It says the policy is based on the Uniform Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP)which is used in the gTLD space by .com, .net and .org. Disspain says it now has to put the formal mechanisms in place, such as creating the positions of arbitrators.