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Application Round Opens for Brussels Meeting Fellowships | Program ensures global representation at ICANN’s International Public Meetings

MARINA DEL REY, Calif. : The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers has launched the 10th round of Fellowship program applications for its 38th International Public Meeting to be held in Brussels, Belgium on 20-25 June 2010.

“Just like the Internet, ICANN is global in scope in its operations,” said Theresa Swinehart, ICANN’s Vice President, Global and Strategic Partnerships. “Our Fellowship program has had a lot of success at our last 8 meetings in making sure global voices are heard in the wide variety of public forums that it holds.”

For the Nairobi Meeting, there are 26 fellows from 21 countries, chosen from 119 applications received. 10 of the fellows are alumni from at least one of the past eight programmes; 14 fellows are first-time attendees to any ICANN meeting and 2 have attended past meetings, but are first time fellows. Priority is given to applicants who are current residents of developing and least developed nations and interested in participating in ICANN and its supporting organizations, such as the Governmental Advisory Committee, the Country Code Names Supporting Organization, the At-Large and the Generic Names Supporting Organization. The Fellowship program will assist in covering airfare, hotel and a stipend. Recipients will be expected to actively participate in and contribute to ICANN processes. As always, registration for ICANN’s meetings is free for anyone wanting to attend.

Applications for the meeting in Brussels will be accepted from now until 1200 PDT (UTC -7) on 19 February 2010. More information, as well as a link to the application for a fellowship, is available online at: or email at

What Is ICANN?

To reach another person on the Internet you have to type an address into your computer - a name or a number. That address has to be unique so computers know where to find each other. ICANN coordinates these unique identifiers across the world. Without that coordination we wouldn't have one global Internet.

ICANN was formed in 1998. It is a not-for-profit public-benefit corporation with participants from all over the world dedicated to keeping the Internet secure, stable and interoperable. It promotes competition and develops policy on the Internet’s unique identifiers.

ICANN doesn’t control content on the Internet. It cannot stop spam and it doesn’t deal with access to the Internet. But through its coordination role of the Internet’s naming system, it does have an important impact on the expansion and evolution of the Internet.

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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"""" is not an IDN."