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Australian top level domain plan stalls after government calls out AuDA failings

The plan to make top level .au internet domains publicly available has been suspended after the organisation responsible for the nation’s internet addresses was slammed as being ‘not fit’ for purpose in a government report today.

AuDA’s latest problems follow sustained criticism from industry figures which saw members launch an action to remove a number of members from the organisation’s board earlier this month.

The government’s review was launched by communication minister Mitch Fifield last October following pressure from industry groups concerned with the organisation’s management, transparency and processes.

In the review handed down today, the Federal Department of Communications and the Arts suggested 31 areas where the organisation should improve its performance, mainly around AuDA’s engagement with industry, government and other stakeholders.

The government has given the organisation three months to respond and show how it will meet the recommendations.

In response to the review, AuDA chair Chris Leptos wrote to members this morning saying the organisation intended to address the minister’s concerns and reply to the department within the three month window. However this would take up most of the group’s resources.

“This will be an intensive undertaking,” Leptos wrote. “Consequently, your Board believes it will not be able to properly consider ‘direct registration’ until the second half of 2019 at the earliest.”

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