[DNS] Our options - Melbourne IT exclusive com.au licence

[DNS] Our options - Melbourne IT exclusive com.au licence

From: Matthew King <mking§cinfo.com.au>
Date: Thu, 13 Jul 2000 19:39:36 +1000
The lay of the land

It seems that Melbourne IT has put up a huge fight to retain an 
exclusive role for as long as possible.

They have been able to get away with it because of the following:

* The minister via NOIE (or just from NOIE) stated very clearly to 
auDA that they did not want a fast track approach to competition.
* Allegedly it was also said by NOIE  that if auDA attempted to play 
hardball with Melbourne IT i.e. by grabbing the zonefiles setting up 
new domain categories etc. that they would have their authority taken 
* It seems that there is a perception in government that if they make 
a decision it will be their fault if it blows up. A consultation 
process means that someone else carries the can. What does NOIE care 
for competition? Or by which the speed by which it happens?
* Melbourne IT  would have not been in any hurry to sort out domain 
licencing and thus funding for auDA and thus reform...
* Melbourne It has not been granted an exclusive licence for one year 
they have been given one until the end of the reform process. Which 
may or may not take one year. If I was a betting man I would say that 
Melbourne It would make this process last as long as possible.

However this is a double edged sword for Melbourne IT as they are now 
"officially" a monopoly player (see below). There is a recourse to 
ACCC but it is on pricing. (also see below)


1/ I have been told today by the way by an Melbourne IT staff member 
that they now have an official monopoly and as per the next point 
this is quite clear.

2/ A company I work for recently placed an official request to be a 
Domain Administrator / Registrar  for second level domains within the 
.au name space.  Yesterday this application was officially rejected 
by auDA. Entrants are now restricted based upon a pending long drawn 
out reform process (i.e. one expected to be finished at the end of 
next year).

3/ As an official monopoly now exists I believe that the ACCC should 
be contacted because of the monopolistic price structure that all 
re-sellers are forced to comply with and that officially no recourse 
can now be taken.

4/ As the government (and I believe the ACCC) has endorsed the 
committee based reform system then we are left with only the option 
of making sure that the prices that this monopoly charge are in line 
with real costs. As I can buy a .com domain for $US10 I should expect 
to pay no more than $AU17 plus a little overhead for the extra 
administration  requirements of eyeballing each application. As I 
have estimated it would take little more that 5min at the most to do 
this (plus staff support costs) an additional $10 should cover this. 
The real cost plus a realistic 10% profit and GST would be in the 
$AU25-30 per annum range. ($4 to auDA  $2 to aunic $8 to IT admin $10 
to eyeball $2 profit $2.5 GST)

5/  We have to request that the ACCC investigate the current price 
structure. $20 - $25 (AU) per year seems a good price to ask for, 
perhaps even a little less if the truth be told.

All those interested in contacting the ACCC please drop me a personal 
email as I think that those interested should have a unified front in 
regards to pricing. Or feel free to help create a forum  on this 
matter at the chat / threaded discussion that can be found at 
http://www.ezgov.com.au/ezgov/ Just click through to the form section.

Matthew King

Reform is needed

>> http://www.it.fairfax.com.au/breaking/20000712/A2568-2000Jul12.html
>Does this REALLY stink?  As far as I can see, this makes auDA another scam
>running the .au for it's own benefit.  It's clearly not in consumers'
>interest.  Why don't they auDA just melbourneit $659,000 for the next year
>for a NON exclusive licence to com.au or just auction licences...
>I can't see that the ACCC would not be interested in this transaction...
>Jim Birch
>This article is not to be reproduced or quoted beyond this forum without
>express permission of the author.  You don't know who really wrote it.
>314 subscribers. Archived at http://lists.waia.asn.au/list/dns (dns/dns)
>Email "unsubscribe" to dns-request&#167;waia.asn.au to be removed.
Received on Thu Jul 13 2000 - 17:39:36 UTC

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