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Australian Internet Governance Forum

auDA Member and Stakeholder Newsletter - May 2018
3 May 2018

Registry Transformation Project Update

The Registry Transformation Project is steadily approaching the all-important transition date. 

The second phase of operational testing began last week. This phase allows registrars to test functionality specific to managing the .au namespace including registrant transfer, reseller information and policy delete.

This weekend will see a major test of the data transfer between the registry operators and is the reason for the maintenance period detailed below.

New registry operator Afilias has also been sharing information on its blog about its approach to security and the enhancements they’ll be making to increase trust and safety in the .au namespace.

You can read their posts on abuse detection and mitigation, DNS security and registry security.


Registry Maintenance: Sunday 6 May

The .au registry will undergo a maintenance period as part of the transition between registry operators.

The maintenance is scheduled for Sunday 6 May, 2018: 08:00 AEST – 20:00 AEST

Internet users should not notice any difference as the DNS will operate uninterrupted.

However, registrants will not be able to be create, renew or change domain names during the maintenance period.

For more information, please contact your domain name registrar.


Demand Class Director Appointments Update

The auDA Board’s Recruitment Committee is currently in the process of interviewing a shortlist of applicants for the vacant Demand Class Director positions.

As you may have read in a recent update, the shortlist was selected from a field of 29 highly qualified candidates.

Once the Recruitment Committee has selected their preferred candidates, the board will meet to confirm the appointments and an announcement will be made.


Response to the Review of the Management of .au

On 18 April the Department of Communications and the Arts published the final report into the “Review of the .au Domain Administration”.

The central finding of the Review is “the current management and governance framework for auDA is no longer fit-for-purpose and that reform is necessary if the company is to perform effectively and meet the needs of Australia’s internet community”.

The report further concluded “the current membership model, and its relationship to corporate governance, is impeding auDA’s decision making and is contributing to ongoing organisational instability”.

The 29 recommendations in the report provide the basis of necessary reform for auDA to meet the requirements of the new Terms of Endorsement.

On 20 April, 2018, auDA replied to the Minister Communications and the Arts welcoming the findings and supporting the 29 recommendations. A copy of auDA’s reply can be found here. The Board of auDA has committed to a process to implement the required reforms in order to meet the timelines outlined in the report.

To meet the new Terms of Endorsement, auDA will need to embark upon substantial constitutional reform. The board has agreed to establish a Consultation Model Working Group to consult extensively with auDA members and stakeholders to achieve this.

This is a critical time for the future of auDA and the .au namespace. All auDA members and stakeholders are encouraged to participate in the process to achieve necessary constitutional reform.


Consultation Model Working Group

We are looking for a group of committed and interested auDA members and stakeholders to help ensure all members and stakeholders get to have their say on the constitutional reforms required to meet the Commonwealth Government’s new Terms of Endorsement.

The key deliverable for the working group will be the development of a model of consultation to engage all auDA members and stakeholders, and to get their input on auDA’s constitutional reforms.

The group will hold its first meeting in the week commencing 14 May, 2018 and members and stakeholders will be able to take part either at the auDA offices or via teleconference. It’s anticipated the initial tenure of the working group will be two months and committee members will be compensated for their time and expenses.

Further information, including the Working Group’s Terms of Reference and the process to apply, will follow soon.


Special General Meeting

Members would be aware that a Special General Meeting (SGM) was recently requested by a group of members under section 249D of the Corporations Act.

Last week auDA successfully applied to the Australian Federal Court to extend the period to hold the SGM.

As pointed out in the Chair’s letter on 27 April, this action was taken to ensure there was enough time to properly consult auDA members and stakeholders on the necessary changes proposed by the Department of Communications and the Arts (DoCA).

Another significant reason auDA sought to delay the SGM was to ensure that the Registry Transformation Project concluded without unnecessary disruption. This project is the biggest project of its kind in the namespace and is vital to ensuring the .au namespace continues to bring benefits to the entire Australian community.

We were pleased the court acknowledged the need for an extension, granting an extension to 27 July, 2018.

More information regarding the SGM will be provided soon.

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