An astute member of the Australian domain industry recently pointed out to me that auDA (and Afilias to a lesser extent) have made a lot of money out of non-complying .org.au domain names over the years.

With some minor editing by me, he writes:

  • Since 1st Jan 2018 there have been 23,968 .org.au domain names dropped. Of these about 600 (estimated) are still registered.
  • At $15 / domain, which is the average retail price, that is around $360,000 AUD that has been charged to registrants.
  • Not sure what the wholesale rate is, but auDA and Afilias would have made approximately 24,000 x $7.50 = $180,000 AUD between them.
  • If the registrars and auDA had applied strict licensing rules as per policy, then Australian registrants registrants would not have lost so much money.

No wonder the cash cow is bursting at the seams!

Hat tip to Nobby. 🙂

N.B. Domainer has written about this on a few occasions, and auDA has acted. Here is one such article from July last year. This explains potential ramifications to holders of .com.au domains when it comes down to priority status rights when direct registration comes in.

6 thoughts on “auDA’s Cash Cow

  • Scott.L
    March 18, 2021 at 7:58 am
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    auDA appears to be gaming the policy framework by way of using the failure of the public to police compliance matters.

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  • Avatar
    March 18, 2021 at 10:35 am
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    It’s a perpetuating rort with lots of hands milking the cow. If auDA were serious, they should tell overseas registrars that they will be punished financially if they allow ineligible registrations.

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  • Avatar
    March 18, 2021 at 12:15 pm
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    Ned you make a good point about the priority status for registrants locked into the auTLD allocation of exact match domains – its up to each registrant to know the rules and apply them, equally, its up to registrars to ensure registrant information is compliant. Unfortunately, it might take years before competing registrants are made aware of their competitors non-compliance and that’s a big win for registrars, the registry, and auDA because each party is forced to pay a yearly fee for this absurd allocation process. So, are those who do the right thing compensated for those years of paying fees?

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  • Avatar
    March 18, 2021 at 2:57 pm
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    Wholesale is $9 per annum. Registrars make money from the hosting and other services. This is why there are so few around anymore.

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    • Avatar
      March 18, 2021 at 3:00 pm
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      Ah. $7.50 now? Not sure of the auDA / Afilias split either.

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  • Avatar
    March 18, 2021 at 7:33 pm
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    15+ years x 400,000 non eligible but still registered .au names x $50 each or more is another way to calculate it which highlights how big this might actually be.

    For .au names years ago the fee was $140 with Melbourne IT registration and renewals..

    auDA $
    Ausregistry $
    Afilias $
    auDA Foundation $
    auDA Registrars $

    This issue is $millions.

    It is something auDA needs to be very careful about with their proposed conflicted name fees where nobody gets the locked conflicted direct registration .au name but still pays this new auDA Registry Registrar profiting fee no other country in the world has. NZ Process is 100% free including conflicted name process mediation between parties…why did auDA want fees..

    is auDA really operating a Not For Profit and auDA “Foundation” for charity purposes anymore or did it ever?

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