RE: [DNS] Auctioning generic names

RE: [DNS] Auctioning generic names

From: Harry Hoholis <webmaster§>
Date: Mon, 17 Sep 2001 15:55:27 +1000
Dear Bruce,

Thank you very much for your detailed response. I agree entirely that
the greatest concern is the method by which the decision to auction
domain names was reached. In the future more decisions regarding the
.au namespace will need to be made and I fear that the standard we
are all allowing to be set, is paving the way for bias and corruption
to sow its seeds.

My concern was that in light of recent events, even the most
unassuming person would be able to see that such bias
and corruption could be perceived to have already set in,
and actually set in motion these same events.

I urge auDa to seriously reconsider its decision making
process and strive to reach decisions and find solutions at all times
that cannot be perceived by industry players or the public
as being biased or based on curruption.

In my opinion the decisions by auDa to:

1. have the aunic database hosted by NetRegistry
2. auction generic domain names

are distasteful to say the least.

Best Regards,
Harry Hoholis

-----Original Message-----
From: Bruce Tonkin [mailto:Bruce.Tonkin&#167;]
Sent: Monday, 17 September 2001 12:39 PM
To: 'Harry Hoholis'
Cc: 'dns&#167;'
Subject: [DNS] Auctioning generic names

Hello Harry,

The relevant section in the Names Panel
( report is:


" 4.1 Generic domain names

Generic domain names are prohibited in, but are allowed in all other
2LDs. The Panel noted that if the prohibition on generic domain names were
to be maintained in, then for the sake of consistency it should be
extended to other 2LDs too (or at the very least, to the other commercial

There is consensus among the Panel that the restriction on generic domain
names should be removed in some way, to meet public demand. However, there
is no consensus about how or when the restriction should be removed. Some
Panel members favoured maintaining the prohibition in, but creating
new 2LDs that would use generic names as gateways or portals (eg.,, etc), or new 2LDs that would allow generic domain names to be
licensed as third level domains (3LDs). Other Panel members favoured
removing the prohibition in, in addition to the new 2LD options.

The Panel has decided to refer this issue to the auDA Board. If the Board
decides to remove the prohibition on generic domain names in, a
discussion paper prepared by a sub-group of the Panel at Attachment B
recommends the auction method of allocation. Note that this recommendation
was put forward by the authors of the paper; it does not necessarily reflect
the views of the whole Panel. If the Board decides to maintain the
restriction on generic domain names, then the Panel suggests that the
reserved list mechanism in recommendation 3.7 would be the best way to do
this. "


Thus the panel reached consensus that the restriction on generic names
should be removed, but could not reach consensus on how that should be done.

A subgroup of the panel (3 people: Alan Chalmers, ACA, Ian Johnston, SETEL,
and Derek Whitehead, Swinburne) made a proposal (in Attachment B) to auction
the generic names.

However there were other submissions to the Names Panel reports that
proposed other approaches (e.g

The auDA Board seems to have made a decision to use the proposal from the
subgroup (based on their press release of
(, although the minutes of the
relevant Board meeting have yet to be posted.  The last Board minutes posted
on the website are May 2001.

The auctioning of generic names is certainly one approach to allocating
generic names, and it also has the advantage of providing some funding to
help auDA manage the process of running a tender for the ".au" and second
level domain registries.  However I would like to have seen some industry
consensus (or at least majority support) reached on this issue with more
public comment - rather than the Board just accepting a proposal from 3
people instead of the panel as a whole.

Note that auDA is an Australian self regulatory policy body, and should
normally be driven by the outcomes of the Advisory Panels
( which include broad participation from
both industry participants and consumers.  I am less concerned about the
method chosen for allocating generic domain names, then I am about the
process used to make the decision.

I hope at least the details of how the auctioning process will work will be
put out for public comment, before implementation.  Implementing an auction
for several thousand generic domain names will not be simple.  e.g Will the
process be done manually by auDA, or will there be an open tender to operate
a system to automate the process?

Bruce Tonkin

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express permission of the author. 337 subscribers. 
Archived at (user: dns, pass: dns)
Email "unsubscribe" to dns-request&#167; to be removed.
Received on Mon Sep 17 2001 - 06:45:56 UTC

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