The Parliamentary Service has applied to InternetNZ to create a moderated second level domain of parliament.nz such as is the case in the UK.
The idea is that apart from the official agencies such as Clerk’s Office and The Parliamentary Service being able to use the name space, one would also allow parliamentary parties to have sub-domains such as act.parliament.nz, greens.parliament.nz which would be for the use of their parliamentary wings, rather than organisational wings.
I am initially very supportive of this, and in fact had several discussions when I worked there about having sub-domains for parliamentary parties. In theory I get a vote on the final application, so I have to keep an open mind, but on the basis fo what is there I am supportive.
One can argue that this can be done under the existing parliament.govt.nz domain, and yes it can. But Parliament is not really part of Government – in theory the Government is accountable to Parliament. And opposition parliamentary parties attacking government policies are probably best not to be in the govt.nz name space.
The reference to parliament.uk is an interesting one, as few people realise the granting of parliament.uk predates the establishment of Nominet (the .uk registry) and they are one of the few .uk 2LDs which are not under ultimate Nominet control. They are not listed as an official 2LD.
Anyway comments on the application can be made to InternetNZ, with details here.
UPDATE: Computerworld has an article on the application, quoting myself and Steven Heath on the issue.