Introduction and Context
This is the final version of the .nz Rules. These .nz rules came into effect as of 1 November 2022.
InternetNZ holds the delegation for the .nz country code top level domain. It operates the regional registry for New Zealand (the .nz Register). The .nz Register is a single register, shared registry system that manages the registration of .nz domain names and associated data.
The guiding basis for the management of country code top level domains, including .nz, is set out in RFC 1591. Using RFC 1591, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), as the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) Operator, is responsible for processes supporting global DNS related functions, including the delegation of country code top level domains.
Consistent with RFC 1591, there is no concept of ‘ownership’ involved in holding the delegation for .nz. InternetNZ serves at the pleasure of the local Internet community. It regards this role as one that must be done with the trust and on behalf of that community.
These .nz Rules have been made by InternetNZ in consultation with the local Internet community.
The following principles guide the management of .nz:
- .nz should be secure and trusted: .nz infrastructure must be dependable and secure, and .nz be trusted
- .nz should be open and accessible: everybody should be able to observe, participate, innovate and enjoy the benefits of .nz
- .nz should serve and benefit New Zealand and reflect and be responsive to our diverse social, cultural and ethnic environment
- .nz should support te reo Māori me ōna tikanga and participation in .nz by Māori
[Note: this draft principle is to be discussed and will form part of the Māori engagement plan.]
.nz should enable New Zealand to grow and develop: it should help people, businesses and organisations connect, create, innovate and grow
The .nz Principles must be taken as a whole and any tensions between them carefully balanced. No principle is dominant over another.
How these .nz Rules are organised
This document brings together the rules that bind all participants in .nz (the part of the Internet whose domain names end in '.nz'). These rules apply to all users of .nz domains, including Registrars and Domain Name Holders. They are comprised of:
- Operational Rules
- Procedures and requirements.
These set out the basis on which all activity related to the registration and use of .nz domain names should be judged. They will be the key factor in determining whether .nz is operating as the community intends. They will help InternetNZ consider what Policies, Operational Rules and Procedures & Requirements .nz should have, how they should operate and whether they should be modified.
These are based on the Principles and set out the course of action to be taken by InternetNZ and DNCL in determining what the Operational Rules and Procedures & Requirements should be. They will also guide InternetNZ and DNCL in performing their registry and regulator functions.
These provide detailed rules about how .nz operates. They set out:
- how .nz domain names are registered, renewed, assigned and cancelled
- optional features that can be applied to .nz domain names
- the terms of .nz domain names and how they are renewed
- the obligations of participants in .nz
- how moderated .nz domains are operated
- how people can search the .nz register
- how entities are authorised to be registrars in .nz
- how the .nz Rules are enforced and how disputes between participants are investigated and managed.
Procedures and requirements
These detail the procedural requirements and minor or technical requirements of .nz or the domain name system.
The differing parts of the .nz Rules should be read wherever possible so they are consistent. If this is not possible and there is an apparent inconsistency between:
- the Principles
- the Policies
- the Operational Rules
- the Procedures & Requirements
then the .nz Rules should be interpreted to give the Principles the highest priority, followed by the Policies, then the Operational Rules and lastly the Procedures & Requirements.
Changes to these .nz Rules can be made in accordance with the Policy Development Process in Schedule 1.
The main participants in .nz
InternetNZ is responsible for:
- the overall operation of .nz
- the long-term strategy for .nz, which binds InternetNZ and DNCL
- maintaining and developing these .nz Rules
- the operation of the .nz Register and .nz Authoritative DNS consistent with agreed and publicly available service level commitments
- billing relationships with Registrars
- setting the monthly fee Domain Name Holders must pay for a .nz domain name, in consultation with DNCL
- intellectual property rights in the .nz Register
- being the lead representative in the Internet Governance system (e.g. ICANN, APTLD) in collaboration with DNCL
- the development of products for .nz.
Domain Name Commission Limited (DNCL)
The Domain Name Commission Limited (DNCL) is a subsidiary of InternetNZ. Through the DNCL Operating Agreement InternetNZ has appointed DNCL to manage .nz on behalf of InternetNZ. Ultimate responsibility for .nz remains with InternetNZ.
DNCL’s role, responsibilities and obligations are detailed in clauses 8 (Roles, responsibilities and obligations) and clause 12 (Complaints and enforcement). DNCL acts independently of, and is not responsible to, InternetNZ for the performance of its functions and responsibilities.
- monitors and publicly reports on the markets that operate in .nz
- reports to InternetNZ on its corporate performance, and on its responsibilities as set out in these .nz Rules and in the DNCL Operating Agreement.
DNCL can only intervene in the relationship between Domain Name Holders and Registrars or between Registrars and InternetNZ in accordance with these .nz Rules and associated agreements and contracts.
Domain Name Commissioner
The Domain Name Commissioner (the Commissioner) is the most senior staff member in the Domain Name Commission. The Commissioner in undertaking compliance and dispute resolution functions acts independently of InternetNZ.
Registrars manage .nz domain names on behalf of Domain Name Holders by communicating with InternetNZ and managing information on the .nz Register. They are authorised to operate in .nz by DNCL.
Domain Name Holders
Domain Name Holders are persons InternetNZ has licensed to hold a .nz domain name. Domain Name Holders must choose a Registrar to manage their .nz domain name on their behalf
Moderators apply a Moderation Policy to determine who can be a Domain Name Holder of a .nz domain name in one of the Moderated Domains (see clause 9). For example, the Moderator appointed by the New Zealand Government determines who is able to use the Moderated Domain .govt.nz to register a third level domain name like education.govt.nz. Moderators also ensure that all .nz domain names in the Moderated Domain comply with the Moderation Policy.
Resellers provide domain name registration services but are not a Registrar authorised under clause 11 (Authorisation of Registrars). They buy .nz domain names and manage domain name records for Domain Name Holders through an authorised Registrar (e.g., a person registering a .nz domain name on behalf of another person or an IT company that has been given direct access to a Registrar’s services through an API). Resellers are often the intermediary between the end user (the Domain Name Holder) and the registrar and sometimes provide value-added services like website creation or hosting.
See clause 8 (Roles, responsibilities and obligations) for more details on the roles, responsibilities and obligations of the main participants in .nz.
DNCL Domain Name Commission Limited
IANA Internet Assigned Numbers Authority
ICANN Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers
IDN Internationalised Domain Names
DNS Domain Name System
RFC Request for Comment
APTLD Asia Pacific Top Level Domain Name Association
API Application Programming Interface
DNSSEC Domain Name System Security Extensions
DS Delegation of Signing
In these .nz Rules:
Authorisation Agreement means the .nz Registrar Authorisation Agreement entered into between DNCL and each Registrar
Auto-Renew Grace Period has the meaning specified in clause 7.3.5.
Billing Business Rules means the document detailing the business rules for billing of domain names that can be found here.
Commissioner means the Domain Name Commissioner
Compliance Lock means a lock put on a .nz domain name under clause 12
Connection Agreement means the .nz Connection Agreement entered into between InternetNZ and each Registrar
Dispute Resolution Service means the dispute resolution service specified in Schedule 2
DNCL means Domain Name Commission Limited, a subsidiary of InternetNZ
DNS means the domain name system, which helps Internet users find and identify IP addresses by translating complex IP addresses into more easily recognisable domain names
DNS Operator means the person to whom a Domain Name Holder has delegated responsibility to operate their DNS under clause 2.2.9 of these .nz Rules
DNSSEC means Domain Name System Security Extensions, the suite of specifications that provides cryptographic authentication of DNS data, authenticated denial of existence and DNS data integrity.
Domain Name Holder means the person named on the .nz Register as the ‘Domain Name Holder Contact’ and includes a prospective Domain Name Holder if the context requires
DS Record List means information the DNS protocol uses to ensure non-repudiation and integrity of a domain name query through implementation of DNSSEC
Identifiable Individual means an individual who can be identified through relevant information, including but not limited to verifiable identification such as a passport or drivers licence
International Domain Name (IDN) means a domain name that includes at least one non-ASCII character
Moderator means a person responsible under the Moderation Policy for ensuring the Moderated Domain is run in accordance with the Moderation Policy
Moderated Domain means a second level domain to which a Moderation Policy applies and includes '.cri.nz', '.govt.nz', '.health.nz', '.iwi.nz', '.mil.nz', '.parliament.nz'
Moderation Policy means the policy governing the operation of a Moderated Domain
Name Server Data means data held by name servers
Name Server List means the names of the servers that will provide the authoritative DNS response to queries for a domain name
.nz Register means the database maintained by InternetNZ that is the sole, authoritative register of .nz domain names and associated data
Pending Release period (known internationally as the ‘redemption period’) has the meaning specified in clause 5.2
Privacy Option means the privacy option a Domain Name Holder has as provided under clause 6 (formally known as the Individual Registrant Privacy Option (IRPO)
Registered means a domain name that has been assigned to a Domain Name Holder in the .nz Register
Registration Grace Period (known internationally as the ‘addPeriod’) has the meaning specified in clause 7.3
Registrar means an entity authorised under clause 11 (Authorisation of Registrars) to access the .nz Register and manage .nz domain names on behalf of Domain Name Holders
Registry Lock service means the Registry Lock service provided under clause 6 to reduce the risk of unauthorised changes to a .nz domain name’s registration
Renewal Grace Period (known internationally as the ‘renewPeriod’) has the meaning specified in clause 7.3
Reseller means any person working in any way through or with a Registrar’s systems in registering or managing .nz domain names on behalf of a Domain Name Holder
Second Level Domain Name means a .nz domain name registered at the top level, like ‘anyname.nz’
Third Level Domain Name means a .nz domain name registered in a Moderated Domain or an Unmoderated Second Level Domain, like ‘anyname.org.nz’
Unmoderated Second Level Domain means: '.ac.nz', '.co.nz', '.geek.nz', '.gen.nz', '.kiwi.nz', '.maori.nz', '.net.nz', '.org.nz', or '.school.nz'
Working Day means a day other than a Saturday, Sunday or public holiday in Wellington
Zone Data means the list of all current .nz domain names, the domain name server which they are delegated to, and the DS records used to support DNSSEC.
In these .nz Rules, unless the context requires otherwise:
- words importing one gender include the others
- words importing the singular or plural number include the plural and singular number respectively
- ‘including’ and similar expressions are not used as, nor are intended to be interpreted as, words of limitation
- a person includes any individual, corporation, unincorporated association, government department or municipal authority.