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ICANN Posts Proposed Registry Agreement for Designation of the .ASIA Registry

On 18 July 2006, ICANN's Board of Directors approved the posting for public comment of the proposed registry agreement between ICANN and DotAsia Organisation Limited. If approved by the ICANN Board, the agreement (Appendices) would designate DotAsia as the registry operator for the newly designated .ASIA registry. Additional information regarding the .ASIA application can be found at:

The proposed .ASIA registry agreement follows the format of other recent sTLD registry agreements negotiated by ICANN. Specifically, the agreement is for an initial ten year term, and provides for the same set of requirements for:

  • implementation of and compliance with consensus and temporary policies;

  • comprehensive registry data escrow; and

  • approval of new registry services and modifications to existing registry services.

The proposed agreement with DotAsia also provides for presumptive renewal, with the terms of any subsequent agreement negotiated with DotAsia for the continued operation of the .ASIA registry to be reasonably modified to be comparable to the terms of the five most comparable TLDs (or such lesser number, if less than five shall be reasonably comparable), provided that fee increases are not to exceed the average of the percentage increase in registry fees for the comparable TLD group within the prior three years.

Fees to ICANN under the proposed registry agreement for .ASIA would be transactional only, and would be set at US$0.75 for each annual increment of an initial or renewal domain name registration within the .ASIA registry.

Comments on the proposed agreement can be posted to no later than 5:00PM PDT, 31 August 2006 and viewed at

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Internationalized Domain Name ,IDN,"IDNs are domain names that include characters used in the local representation of languages that are not written with the twenty-six letters of the basic Latin alphabet ""a-z"". An IDN can contain Latin letters with diacritical marks, as required by many European languages, or may consist of characters from non-Latin scripts such as Arabic or Chinese. Many languages also use other types of digits than the European ""0-9"". The basic Latin alphabet together with the European-Arabic digits are, for the purpose of domain names, termed ""ASCII characters"" (ASCII = American Standard Code for Information Interchange). These are also included in the broader range of ""Unicode characters"" that provides the basis for IDNs. The ""hostname rule"" requires that all domain names of the type under consideration here are stored in the DNS using only the ASCII characters listed above, with the one further addition of the hyphen ""-"". The Unicode form of an IDN therefore requires special encoding before it is entered into the DNS. The following terminology is used when distinguishing between these forms: A domain name consists of a series of ""labels"" (separated by ""dots""). The ASCII form of an IDN label is termed an ""A-label"". All operations defined in the DNS protocol use A-labels exclusively. The Unicode form, which a user expects to be displayed, is termed a ""U-label"". The difference may be illustrated with the Hindi word for ""test"" — परीका — appearing here as a U-label would (in the Devanagari script). A special form of ""ASCII compatible encoding"" (abbreviated ACE) is applied to this to produce the corresponding A-label: xn--11b5bs1di. A domain name that only includes ASCII letters, digits, and hyphens is termed an ""LDH label"". Although the definitions of A-labels and LDH-labels overlap, a name consisting exclusively of LDH labels, such as"""" is not an IDN."