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Possible Changes to the New Zealand Domain Name Space

New Zealander’s are being urged to offer their opinion on a consultation paper that could significantly change the way New Zealand uses domain names. The proposal put forward by The Domain Name Commission Limited (DNCL), suggests opening New Zealand domain name registrations directly at the second level, meaning people could register domain names that end in .NZ, rather than the status quo where domain names end in .CO.NZ.ORG.NZ, .AC.NZ, .GEEK.NZ, .GEN.NZ, .KIWI.NZ, .MAORI.NZ, .NET.NZ, and .SCHOOL.NZ.


Now in it’s second round of public consultation, DNCL encourages New Zealanders to consider the issues associated with changing the domain name system. The greater range of quality opinions DNCL receives, the better. The first round of consultation received only 115 submissions and there was no clear consensus as to weather people were for – or against – the proposal. However, DNCL polls suggest that New Zealanders are increasingly supportive of the change. For instance, between 2003-2011 support for the ability to register domain names directly at the second level has risen from 25% to 59%.


happy customersI understand that allowing registrations directly at the second level could cause confusion in the short-term, but also believe it could improve the .nz domain name space in the long-term. For one thing .nz domain names, especially for personal use, do not always easily fit into one category. DNCL is concerned that people are being forced to choose a second level domain when there is no technical reason for this. If the proposal went ahead, an advantage is that it would offer more choice to consumers. On the other hand, one potential issue we have considered is that people might feel as if they need to register their domain names at both second and third levels, for example getting both and

- DNCL Chair Joy Liddicoat

Full details of the consultation document and background material are available here.

Online submissions can be made here .

The cut-off date for submissions is midday Wednesday 31 July, 2013.