Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers

ICANN Concludes Board Meeting in Yokohama | Adopts Policies to Add New Top Level Domains, Elect At Large Members for the Board of Directors and Enhance the Stability and Security of the Root-Server System

16 July 2000

Yokohama, Japan (July 16, 2000) - Today, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN)
held a regular meeting of its Board of Directors. Items on the agenda included:

  • Addition of New Top Level Domains (TLDs)
  • At Large Membership and Election
  • Root Server System Enhancements
  • Administrative and Other Matters

Complete archives of the meeting are available at http://cyber.law.harvard.edu/icann/yokohama/ and the text of the final resolutions are posted at http://www.icann.org/minutes/prelim-report-16jul00.htm.

Highlights of the resolutions adopted by the Board:

New Top Level Domains - The Board unanimously adopted the following schedule for the addition of new TLDs in a measured and responsible manner as recommended by the Domain Name Supporting Organization (DNSO) and public comment.

  • August 1, 2000 - ICANN to issue a formal call for proposals by those seeking to sponsor or operate a new TLD
  • October 1, 2000 - Deadline for receipt of proposals
  • October 15, 2000 - Deadline for public comments on proposals
  • November 20, 2000 - ICANN to announce selections
  • December 31, 2000 - Target date for completion of contract negotiations with those selected

Data elements to be included in proposals:

  • full information about the technical, business, management, and financial capabilities of the proposed operator of the registry;
  • a detailed description of the policies contemplated to promote orderly registration of names in the initial phases of introduction of the TLD;
  • full details concerning arrangements proposed to protect users in the event of registry failure; and
  • measures proposed for minimizing use of the TLD to carry out infringements or other abuses of intellectual property rights.

Guidelines to be considered in assessing proposals for selection:

  • The need to maintain the Internet's stability, and especially the protection of domain-name holders from the effects of registry or registration-system failure.
  • The extent to which selection of the proposal would lead to an effective "proof of concept" concerning the introduction of top-level domains in the future, including the diversity the proposal would bring to the program, such as fully open top level domains, restricted and chartered domains with limited scope, noncommercial domains, and personal domains; and a variety of business models and geographic locations.
  • The enhancement of competition for registration services at the registry and registrar level.
  • The enhancement of the utility of the DNS.
  • The evaluation of delegation of policy-formulation functions for special-purpose TLDs to appropriate organizations.
  • The extent to which the proposal would meet previously unmet types of needs.
  • The importance of appropriate protections of rights of others, including intellectual property rights, in connection with the operation of the TLD, especially during the start-up phases.

The Board established an application fee of $50,000 USD. The fee is intended to cover the likely costs of the evaluation and approval process, and to ensure that the remainder of the ICANN community is not required to subsidize the new TLD application process.

This action is the culmination of a process that has extended for more than five years and is intended to test the feasibility of the addition of new TLDs while maintaining the stability and integrity of the Internet.

At Large Membership & Elections

The Board finalized the process for initial selection of five Directors by its At Large Membership. Those Directors should be seated in time for ICANN's annual meeting in Los Angeles on November 13-14, 2000. Following is the election schedule adopted by the Board:

  • Determination of the ballot (now - August 31)
  • Nominations by the Nominating Committee (now - July 31)
  • Member-nomination process (August 1 - August 31)
  • Voter education/dialogue phase (September 1 - September 30)
  • Online vote (October 1 - October 10)

Root Server System Enhancements

The ICANN Board accepted the recommendation of its Root Server System Advisory Committee to submit, no later than the end of August 2000, a proposal to the United States Department of Commerce for the transition of the current root server system architecture to an enhanced architecture based on the use of a dedicated primary nameserver operated by ICANN. In addition the Board authorized the negotiation of agreements between ICANN and U.S. Department of Commerce for ICANN to assume responsibility for the maintenance and operation of various aspects of the root zone files.

Administrative and Other Matters

The Board adopted resolutions to:

  • Appoint auditors
  • Establish criteria for the specific allocation of countries among ICANN's five geographic regions
  • Revise its bylaws to publicize actions taken by the Board more quickly than was required in the past; in general actions taken by the Board shall be made available on a publicly accessible Internet World Wide Web site no later than five days after each meeting

ABOUT ICANN

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) is a technical coordination body for the Internet. Created in October 1998 by a broad coalition of the Internet's business, technical, academic, and user communities, ICANN is assuming responsibility for a set of technical functions previously performed under U.S. government contract by IANA and other groups.

Specifically, ICANN coordinates the assignment of the following identifiers that must be globally unique for the Internet to function:

  • Internet domain names
  • IP address numbers
  • protocol parameter and port numbers

In addition, ICANN coordinates the stable operation of the Internet's root server system.

As a non-profit, private-sector corporation, ICANN is dedicated to preserving the operational stability of the Internet; to promoting competition; to achieving broad representation of global Internet communities; and to developing policy through private-sector, bottom-up, consensus-based means. ICANN welcomes the participation of any interested Internet user, business, or organization. See <http://www.icann.org>.

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