October 11, 2013
InternetNZ has approved a proposal to allow second level .NZ names to be registered.
Under the proposal, parties will be able to register domains such as example.nz instead of being confined to the current third level system; e.g. example.co.nz.
There will be no changes to existing second level domains and categories such as .co.nz and.org.nz will still be able to be registered once the new system comes into effect.
InternetNZ says the enhanced system will align the .nz name space "with a majority of other top level domains that already allow registrations directly at the second level."
Those champing at the bit to register second level .NZ domains will need to be patient for a little while longer yet - a final policy implementing the proposal will be subject to public consultation next year.
"This decision will future-proof the .nz domain name space and help it stay relevant to New Zealanders," says David Farrar, Chair of the Domain Name Commission; a subsidiary of Internet NZ.
InternetNZ is the delegated manager for the .NZ country code top level domain (ccTLD). InternetNZ assumed the role in 1996, when Waikato University decided to hand over running of the registry due to increasing demand for .NZ domains.
According to the Domain Name Commission; the number of active .NZ domains at the end of September was 539,335. By far, the most popular of all NZ extensions is .CO.NZ - numbering 464,693 at the end of last month.
The .NZ extension has been around since 1994. In late 2002, the Domain Name Commission began authorising private companies as registrars and today there are 82 authorised registrars.
Unlike Australian domains, registrants do not need to be based in New Zealand or have a registered presence in the country to secure a name.
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