I have 14 pages of my .au site in the worldwide index. I now have only one left in the Australian index (it also has a strange ending ...default?Sess=1 which is something I don't understand either). I have been told by AV Aus that when spidered after submitting to altavista.com, a .au site will be identified as Australian content and end up in the Australian index. (You can't submit direct to Australia at present, though I'm told you will be able to soon.) But it's just not happening for me and I can't fathom it. I desperately want to get back to a decent ranking here. I have to say the AV Aus staff have been very responsive to my emails, but I'm still not getting anywhere and worry about becoming a pest.
Thanks Caine. That's what's happening alright. I wonder if it's since the ransom note process was introduced which effectively bypassed regional submissions and/or whether the paid submissions might not be so lucrative once they reintroduce regional submissions. I almost resorted to this in desperation but when queried infospider confirmed such submissions would only be accessible in worldwide searches.
Cherryl, I had a long talk with the people at AV Australia about your question. As the discussion went into a lot of other issues as well I posted the whole lot over here [webmasterworld.com] in a new thread.
Thanks Woz (I have been down on the coast the last couple of days and just got back) I will follow the AV Aus developments closely (and email them again about why my very australian site is not showing up in the local results.) Thanks for the great info.