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ICANN Seeks Input on Next Round Draft Applicant Support Program Handbook

12 February 2024

Today, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) published a draft of the Applicant Support Program (ASP) Handbook for the next round of the New gTLD Program for Public Comment.

The ASP is an initiative developed as part of ICANN's New Generic Top-Level Domain (gTLD) Program. The program is intended to provide financial and nonfinancial support for eligible entities that demonstrate financial need and work in the public interest.

The ASP Handbook offers a step-by-step guide to applying for support and includes information on application deadlines, criteria, processes, and evaluation. The handbook is part of ICANN's effort to implement the policy recommendations on Topic 17: Applicant Support from the Final Report on the New gTLD Subsequent Procedures Policy Development Process, while taking into account the Board's pending consideration of guidance provided by the Generic Names Supporting Organization Guidance Process (GGP) for Applicant Support.

Before this Public Comment proceeding, the ICANN organization worked with the ASP Implementation Review Team to refine the draft handbook in line with Applicant Support policy recommendations and pending GGP for ASP guidance. This Public Comment period is an opportunity for the broader ICANN community to contribute to strengthening and refining the draft ASP Handbook in line with policy outputs.

To participate in this Public Comment proceeding, visit the proceeding webpage. Please note that the Public Comment period for the draft ASP Handbook is 50 days, which is 10 days longer than the standard 40 days, to take into account the ICANN79 Community Forum. Currently, the New gTLD Program team does not anticipate that the timeline for the ASP and the next round opening (targeted for April 2026) will allow for an extension of this 50-day Public Comment period.

Public Comment Opening Date: 12 February 2024

Public Comment Closing Date: 2 April 2024


ICANN's mission is to help ensure a stable, secure, and unified global Internet. To reach another person on the Internet, you need to type an address – a name or a number – into your computer or other device. That address must be unique so computers know where to find each other. ICANN helps coordinate and support these unique identifiers across the world. ICANN was formed in 1998 as a nonprofit public benefit corporation with a community of participants from all over the world.