Today I have a look at what a couple of the bigger players have to say. Companies like CarSales and the REA Group (publisher of realestate.com.au) who are not in favour of direct registrations proceeding.
They set out their reasons why quite logically; and I’ve taken the opportunity to summarise a few of these:
Key points from CarSales submission
carsales’ view is that registrations under .au TLDs should not be made available because they do not provide the benefits that the Panel rely on to justify their introduction and they present complications for existing and future registrants. The existing 2LDs (.com.au, .net.au, etc.) that are available for use adequately service the needs of Australian domain registrants.
In the event that .au TLDs are introduced, the .au TLD should be reserved for the existing 2LD owner for 5 years at no cost.
carsales’ views are based on the following points, each of which will be addressed in turn.
1. DO NOT INTRODUCE .au TLDs
1.1. Does not provide benefits presented by the Panel
1.2. Open to cybersquatting and bad faith registrations
1.3. Increased cost of maintaining domain portfolio
1.4. Impact on trade mark assets of business
1.5. Opens up to user confusion
2. IF .au TLDs ARE INTRODUCED, THEY BE INTRODUCED WITH CERTAIN CONDITIONS
2.1. Protocols for protecting against cybersquatting
2.2. .au domains reserved for 5 years at no cost for existing 2LD holders and preferential allocation to .com.au registrants
2.3. Offer domain registrations that last for 1 year and 5 years
Read full version here.
Key points from REA Group submission
REA is concerned that the ability to register the .au domain will negatively impact existing domain name holders. In particular, REA considers that direct registrations will result in:
(a) defensive registrations by existing 2LD domain name holders;
(b) typo-squatting or bad faith registrations; and
(c) widespread confusion as a result of direct registrations by entities that “missed out” on the equivalent 2LD registration.
They conclude by stating:
In summary, REA considers that the introduction of direct registrations will provide little or no benefit to those wishing to register a domain name. Conversely, direct registrations will have a detrimental impact on existing domain holders and will cause additional and unnecessary cost and administration.
Read full version here.
Tip Of The Iceberg
It’s terrific that these two big businesses have explained the view from the other side. As you can imagine, they are not in isolation. It will be interesting to see what further action they may take (in the future) if they feel their businesses are being arbitrarily affected.
More importantly though is the view of the SME’s – the small and medium enterprises that will effected by direct registrations. These are entities that have little or no clue what may be in store for them. These are the people and businesses that auDA really needs to better communicate with in my opinion.
The dialogue by auDA over direct registrations definitely needs to be stepped up several notches. Judging by some recent actions, I think they do have the message. Time will tell though – let’s see what happens in the next six months.