It's all about .au!
This winter sees the launch of a new Australian domain name extension, .au. The first addition to available Australian domains for almost 20 years. The new domain will allow any business, organisation, or individual with a connection to Australia the ability to register (or apply) for the shortened URL. For example mondaymedia.au.
What does this mean?
Well, we're just playing catch-up. Most of our international neighbours use the shorter (2nd level) domains, New Zealand (.nz), China (.cn), Singapore (.sg), Thailand (.th) and so on.
For most people, in all honesty, this change will make very little difference. Whilst most of us are very familiar with the .com.au domain, the new .au, in reality, is simply a shortened version. Quicker to type, and mainly due to limited space on mobile devices.
The new domain is being regarded as ‘an innovation' in Australian internet. Call us cynical, but in effect we see it as simply a doubling up of required domains and a money generating scheme for those at the top with limited advantages to the public.
How does this affect me?
Your domain name is precious, it is your digital identity and is unique to yourself, your business or organisation. You wouldn’t want anyone, or even a close competitor to set up shop using your name (legally).
To put it in context, if you owned a high street clothing store, you wouldn’t be best pleased if a stranger came and set up a stall selling very similar t-shirts to yours right outside your door. This is what could happen if a complete stranger was allowed to purchase your domain name with the .au extension.
Protect your digital space!
The good news is that you have time!, but not much.
A 6 month ‘priority allocation’ period began on 24th March 2022. This means that anyone can register their interest in a new .au domain, but ownership priority will be given to those to currently own the equivalent .com.au, .net.au, .org.au, or .id.au domain.
After the 20th September 2022, the new domains are open for virtually anyone to freely purchase
If you are worried about the cost of multiple websites on multiple domains, then there is some good news. You only need the one website sited on your primary domain. All other domain names can be pointed or forwarded to your primary domain.
The team here at Monday Media recommend that you play it safe, register for the new .au domain in plenty of time before the 20th September cut-off and rest in the knowledge that your digital space is safe.
If Monday Media registered your existing domain on your behalf, contact us at email@example.com and we will arrange to secure your corresponding .au domain.
If your existing domain is in your own account, we recommend that you login to your domain control panel and follow any instruction by your domain host to apply or register for your additional domain extension.
To be eligible for a .au domain you must have an “Australian presence.” An Australian presence includes Australian citizens or permanent residents, registered Australian organisations, associations and businesses, and legal entities that have a registered Australian trademark. There is also a verification process to validate that registrants have a legitimate connection to Australia, which will help keep the .au namespace local, trusted, and secure.