The domain name was originally allocated by Jon Postel, operator of IANA to Kevin Robert Elz of Melbourne University in 1986. After an approximately five-year process in the 1990s, the Internet industry created a self-regulatory body called .au Domain Administration to operate the domain. It obtained assent from ICANN in 2001, and commenced operating a new competitive regime for domain registration on 1 July 2002. Since this new regime, any registration has to be ordered via a registrar.
.melbourne – for Victorian registered businesses, entities associated with the state of Victoria or Australian citizens and residents with a Victorian address.