Board Minutes - 9 February 2004

Public Version
Meeting of the .au Domain Administration Board

9 February 2004 - 1.00pm
.au Domain Administration Limited, 107 Faraday Street. Carlton VIC 3053

Larry Bloch, Greg Crew, Chris Disspain, Kim Heitman, Jo Lim, Josh Rowe, Peter Shilling and Tony Staley

Kim Davies, Cheryl Langdon-Orr and Greg Watson

John Higgins (Hayes Knight)

Ric da Paz, Ashley Cross (NOIE) and Peter Nissen

1. Continuous Disclosure

There were no matters to be disclosed.

2. Confirmation of Minutes

The minutes of the November 2003 meeting were confirmed.

Action from the November board meeting regarding membership applications outstanding from October 2003: "Maddocks to write again to all applicants giving them a final opportunity to respond."

Following further discussion of this item on the board mail list, the letters to applicants were sent by auDA not Maddocks.

3. Finance Report

The board noted the finance report, previously approved by the Finance Committee.

4. CEO Report

The following issue was noted:

    legacy and domains

auDA is the registrar of record for a large number of legacy and domains that are due to expire on 30 June 2004. auDA has made arrangements with AusRegistry to send renewal notices to registrants using available email, postal and phone contacts. In many cases the domain records are incomplete or incorrect; it may be possible for auDA to cross-reference these records with registrars to find registrant contact details. It was also suggested that media coverage and liaison with state fair trading offices might help to raise awareness among registrants.

5. auDA Foundation

The Foundation has been granted tax exempt status. An application for deductible gift status will need to be made to the Assistant Treasurer.

The board discussed whether additional directors should be appointed to the Foundation at this time. It was agreed to defer this decision pending the outcome of the application for deductible gift status. In the meantime, the current Foundation directors should prepare relevant documentation (eg. operating procedures, selection criteria for grant applications, etc) for approval by the auDA board so that funds can be transferred from auDA to the Foundation.

Action: TS and CD to arrange a meeting with the Assistant Treasurer regarding deductible gift status for the Foundation.

Action: The current Foundation directors to prepare relevant documentation for consideration at the next auDA board meeting in April.

6. Policy Development

    Community geographic 2LDs

JL gave an update on the public consultation held by the National Reference Group (NRG) in December/January. There was general support for the draft domain name policy rules and they are likely to be finalised at the next NRG meeting.

To date there has been little interest among accredited registrars to provide services for community geographic 2LDs. There is concern that the policy compliance checks required will be onerous and not commercially viable. The NRG has requested that auDA consider acting as registrar, to help preserve the policy integrity of the namespace and keep costs to a minimum for registrants.

Supply class directors indicated that registrars would be happy to provide technical services to registrants. Registrars may also be prepared to perform policy compliance checks if the rules are clearly defined and there are mechanisms in place to handle complaints and disputes about eligibility. It was suggested that the NRG should hold direct consultation with registrars to explore these issues further.

The board confirmed the general principle that auDA is a registrar of last resort and should only provide services where no commercial opportunity exists. The NRG would need to present a compelling case for the board to grant an exemption with respect to the community geographic 2LDs.

    Geographic names restriction in and

In August 2003 the board resolved to hold a public consultation on whether or not the restriction on geographic names in and should be lifted. The consultation has been delayed to allow the NRG to hold its own public consultation.

At its last meeting the NRG expressed concern about the timing of the consultation and possible public confusion about commercial versus community geographic domain names. NRG member Natasha McGuire (NSW Government) has written to the board requesting that the consultation be postponed until after the implementation of the community geographic 2LDs.

The board acknowledged that people's views about commercial use of geographic domain names might differ depending on the availability of community-based geographic domain names.

The board agreed to postpone the consultation until June 2004, by which time it is expected that the community geographic 2LDs will be ready for public release.

7. Membership

The members listed below were accepted in the classes indicated.

Web Farm Ltd (Demand)
Anthony Blackie (Demand)
Frank Priscoglio (Demand)

8. Board correspondence

Correspondence was received from Natasha McGuire (NSW Government) which the board considered under item 6, above.

9. Other Business

    Board openness and transparency

The board discussed a draft statement of principles circulated by GW prior to the meeting. It was agreed to adopt the draft as a working document. When finalised, the statement will be published on the auDA web site.

Action: Board members to further discuss and refine the draft statement of principles on the board mail list.

    auDA policy reviews

Supply class directors advised that registrars would like auDA to conduct reviews of some of its policies, mostly in relation to the eligibility and allocation criteria for open 2LDs. The board agreed that a starting point would be for registrars to submit their request to the auDA executive. The executive will determine if the requested reviews can be conducted by auDA staff consultation, or if they need to be referred to an advisory panel.

10. Next Meeting

The next board meeting will be held on Monday 19 April 2004.