.au Domain Administration Ltd (auDA) is the policy authority and self-regulatory body for the .au domain space.
In December 2000, the Australian Government formally endorsed auDA as the appropriate body to administer the .au domain space and auDA continue to regulate the Australian domain name space to this day.
auDA develops and implements domain name policy, licenses 2LD registry operators, accredits and licenses domain registrars, implements consumer safeguards, facilitates .au Dispute Resolution Policy, technically manages of the .au zone file and manages and maintains a secure and stable Domain Name System.
In January 2018, they wrote a blog entitled:
Before someone who wants to own a particular domain name goes ahead and wastes their time with making a complaint against someone who currently and legitimately owns their dream domain name, one should read the following information that features on auDA’s recent blog post:
“The rules determining who can register what .au domain names follow some key principles which help ensure the .au namespace is accessible, equitable and trustworthy.
In .au, and most other top level domains (TLDs), domain name licences are allocated on a ‘first come, first served’ basis.
If you’re the first person to apply to register a domain name you’ll be able to register it subject to your eligibility. (You also need to remain eligible for the domain name licence for the entire duration of the licence period – but that’s another topic).
If you’re starting a new business, we recommend registering any corresponding or relevant domain name(s) when you register the business with ASIC. This doesn’t mean you have to have a website ready to go or even use the domain name but it’s a measure which can potentially save some hassle in the future.
There is no hierarchy of rights in the DNS, which means a person has no better entitlement to a name in a namespace than any other person.
In practice, this long-standing principle means that ownership of a particular business name, trademark or brand DOES NOT give you greater right to a particular domain name than anyone else who might be eligible for it.
Similarly, your ownership of other domain name licences – whether .au or not – doesn’t grant you any more rights to use a particular domain name.
For any given domain name there may be multiple people who, in different ways, meet the eligibility requirements to use it, and no particular use of a domain name licence is considered more valuable than another.”
In summary, this means, as long as a domain name is owned legitimately, your best option to own your dream domain name is to offer to PURCHASE IT.
A legitimate domain name owner is anyone who owns a generic-word or geographic-word (or words), or their business name has a “close and substantial connection” to the domain name, and they’re not attempting to pass themselves off as another company and are not infringing trademark law. (Owning a domain name in itself does not infringe a trademark!)
Legitimate domain name owners TAKE GREAT OFFENCE to potential buyers who ATTACK THEM and try to STEAL their domain names (digital assets).
Domain Names are “digital real estate”. Imagine if someone knocked on your front door, at home – where you live, and told you that you had to leave your property because they wanted it instead or else they were going to sue you?!
If you need help figuring out the best “current market value” price to offer for the purchase of your dream domain name, you could try asking your Registrar or search for a qualified Domain Broker.