InternetNZ has begun reviewing the second level domain (2LD) process by calling for interested parties to be part of a review committee chaired by the domain name commissioner (DNC) Debbie Monahan.
There are 11 2LDs in New Zealand - the most recent of which is the .maori.nz space which was opened to the public in September. The Bankers Association has tried twice to have .bank.nz introduced but has failed to gain enough support on both occasions. (The association hasn't decided if it will try for a third time.) The decision-making process has been criticised by participants for being unnecessarily long-winded.
The review will "consider all aspects of 2LDs in the .nz space for example, whether it should be easier or harder to get a new 2LD, whether all the existing 2LDs should remain and even whether the .nz space should have 2LDs at all" according to a statement on the DNC website. The committee will consist of Monahan, a representative from InternetNZ's oversight committee and four other interested parties.
The nominations for interest in being involved have closed and InternetNZ's oversight committee will meet in early February to select the four other participants.
The approval path for a 2LD involves a discussion period, a straw poll which requires over 70% of voters to approve the name before it can continue, a submission period, a vote by council, a second submission period, and a final vote by council before being introduced. Applications can take up to eight months and if rejected at the straw poll cannot be resubmitted for a year.
One final proposal had already been accepted before the moratorium was brought into effect - .geek.nz has entered the first discussion phase ahead of a straw poll vote on the issue. Monahan says that proposal will be considered under the old rules regardless of what the review committee decides for the future of the 2LD.