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ICANN Opens Comment Period on Telnic Proposal

On 27 April 2007, ICANN posted for public information a proposal from Telnic Ltd., the sponsor of the .TEL top-level domain, to amend the .TEL Registry Agreement. Specifically, Telnic is seeking to alter the public display of Whois for .TEL customers pursuant to Appendix S, Section VII of the .TEL Registry Agreement (http://www.icann.org/tlds/agreements/tel/appendix-s-07apr06.htm#Part7). (Telnic intends to launch registry operations in late 2007/early 2008.)

Telnic’s request states that they have been in communication with the UK Information Commissioner’s Office concerning Telnic’s current contractual obligations on Whois. However, there is no pending enforcement action against Telnic, therefore this is not a situation that would trigger the Draft ICANN Procedure for Handling Whois Conflicts with Privacy Law (http://gnso.icann.org/issues/whois-privacy/whois_national_laws_procedure.htm). In addition, this change is being proposed while discussion continues within the GNSO Policy Development Process on Whois. Telnic (and all gTLD registries) will be required to comply with new Whois consensus policy when approved by the Board.

As provided for by existing consensus policy (http://www.icann.org/registries/rsep/rsep.html), ICANN has undertaken a preliminary determination period to determine whether the proposed service might raise significant security or stability, or competition issues. ICANN's determination is that the proposed amendment does not raise such issues.

The next step in evaluation is that (because implementation of the proposal would require a change to the .TEL Registry Agreement) ICANN will post the proposed amendment, solicit public comment and refer the proposal to the ICANN Board for consideration.

A copy of the proposed amendment is available at http://www.icann.org/tlds/agreements/tel/tel-amendment-30may07.pdf [PDF, 25K] and provides for changes to Appendix 1, Appendix 5 and Appendix S, Part VI of the .TEL Registry Agreement. The comments on the proposal may be submitted to registryservice@icann.org until 10 June 2007 23:59 UTC and may be viewed at http://forum.icann.org/lists/registryservice/. The process for considering new registry services is posted at http://www.icann.org/registries/rsep/rsep.html. All documentation regarding this proposed service and corresponding comment forum has been previously posted as part of the procedure at http://www.icann.org/registries/rsep/#2007004.


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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""icann.org"" is not an IDN."