auDA staff and Board were delighted to host two Associate Member networking events this month, marking the start of our 2021 member event program.
Our first event took place overlooking Melbourne’s AAMI Park Stadium and Rod Laver Arena to our left and Federation Square and South Bank to our right.
The following week, we headed north to host our members at Sydney’s sunny Darling Harbour.
We were also pleased to welcome members virtually at both events.
An auDA update
auDA Chair Alan Cameron AO got proceedings underway with an introduction to the value of the .au domain. He spoke about how COVID-19 has driven an uplift in the digital economy, quoting auDA research that demonstrates the pandemic compelled businesses and Australians to engage online more heavily than they did pre-pandemic. He recognised that the boom in .au registrations is in no small way connected to the trust Australians have in .au, with com.au the most common way online shoppers identify a business as Australian. He finished by outlining the Board’s ongoing commitment to support Australia's digital transformation and the great economic and social benefit that flows from it.
Next up, auDA Chief Executive Officer Rosemary Sinclair AM took us through auDA’s important role in helping shape Internet governance and policy in Australia and abroad. She explained that unlike the postal system or telephony, management of the global Internet is not part of the United Nations system. Instead, the Internet is governed via a multi-stakeholder approach where governments, industry (including auDA), the technical community and civil society all participate on a relatively equal footing. She shared auDA’s commitment to cooperating with stakeholders both here and overseas to increase the effectiveness of multi-stakeholder processes. We’ll be sharing more from Rosemary’s thought-provoking presentation next week so keep an eye out on the .au blog.
Last but certainly not least, Chief Operating Officer Bruce Tonkin spoke about the many moving parts that make up auDA’s new Licensing Framework and the detailed preparations that went into its launch on 12 April 2021. He covered our continuing close engagement with registrars to embed the rules that have launched in phase one, and how future phases will see the introduction of id.au namespace, second level names (such as foxeample.au) and internationalised domain names (such as 例如.au). Bruce took a range of insightful questions from members (both in the room and online) spanning topics including domain name system (DNS) security and the complexity involved in internationalised domain names.
What our members had to say
Following the presentations, members joined us for a networking session. They had the opportunity to deep dive into their favourite .au, DNS and Internet related topics with auDA staff, Board members and each other. It also provided us the chance to ask members what they enjoyed or found interesting from the session.
“One thing that I've definitely learnt and expanded on my knowledge is around the new rules that have come into place in the last week and coming up, so for me that's really beneficial.” Niluka
“The highlight for me was hearing Rosemary speak about the focus on multi-stakeholder engagement and governance for the Internet. I feel reassured that .au is in good hands.” Nathan
“I was very happy to reaffirm the authenticity and credibility that the Australian domain association provides to the Australian community…Our space [the .au] is democratic, it’s open, it’s free, it’s secure and it follows policies that are fair and I love that.” Anthony
“We often get questions [from our customers] about registrations, about domain names, about what’s happening in the space and the best way to stay up to date with everything is to be a member, to get involved and to come to events like this.” Alex
We value the opportunity to hear directly from auDA members. They help us shape our direction and keep us informed of policy issues that are of concern to the broader community. We’re grateful to everyone who joined us and engaged in many interesting discussions across the two events.
We’re already in the early stages of planning our next member events so we can continue to seek input from our member community. Members, keep an eye on your emails for more information. If you’re not yet a member but would like the opportunity to participate in upcoming events, join our Associate Member program free of charge by visiting www.auda.org.au/join.