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Request for Public Comments and Dialogue on ICANN's Performance

As part of an ongoing interest in continuous improvement, ICANN is seeking community feedback about its performance.

All responses are welcome. Targeted comments regarding several areas of performance, which have been drawn from the ICANN Strategic Plan, are of particular interest:

  • Is ICANN becoming more transparent, accessible and accountable? What improvements have been observed and what still needs to be done?
  • Has ICANN improved its operational performance? What improvements have been observed and what still needs to be done?
  • Has ICANN improved its performance in the development of Policy? What improvements have been observed and what still needs to be done?
  • Has ICANN increased international participation? What improvements have been observed and what still needs to be done?
  • Have there been improvements in participation and in efficiency of the ICANN multi-stakeholder model? What more needs to be done?
  • What plans and actions have been observed that position ICANN for more comprehensive transition of the technical coordination of the Internet’s system of unique identifiers. What more needs to be done?
  • What improvements have been made in dispute resolution and the application of fairness and equity in the management of complaints and other mechanisms of review that are available? These include the work of the reconsideration committee, the Ombudsman and independent review.

Comments will be received at http://forum.icann.org/lists/performance-2007/ until June 5, 2007 and should be sent to: performance-2007@icann.org.

A discussion will also take place on ICANN's Blog <http://blog.icann.org> commencing today. ICANN's public participation site <http://meetings.icann.org> will also serve as a tool for participation in this dialogue.


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Domain Name System
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""icann.org"" is not an IDN."