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ICANN Wraps Up Prague Meeting on Thursday

On behalf of our Chairman of the Board, Steve Crocker:

"In our ongoing efforts to improve the ICANN Meeting experience for all participants, we are implementing some changes for the June meeting in Prague.

The Friday morning program, which in the past has comprised AC/SO committee reports, Board committee reports, and the public Board meeting, has been removed.

AC/SO committee reports and Board committee reports will now be published for review on the ICANN website.

The public Board meeting has been replaced with a one-hour session following the Public Forum on Thursday afternoon. In this session the Board will outline what they have heard during the week from their meetings with AC/SOs and their constituent parts and will identify those matters they expect to be dealing with between the Prague and Toronto Meetings.

The close of this session (expected to be around 18:00) will mark the official end of the ICANN meeting and will be immediately followed by a two-hour farewell reception for all ICANN Meeting participants.

It is intended that at the beginning of the Toronto meeting there will be a Board community session where the Board will report to the community on what they have dealt with since Prague.

We believe that the removal of the Friday public Board meeting and its replacement with two Board community sessions will improve the effectiveness of both the Board and the staff and increase the time that the Board has to interact with the community.

We hope you find these changes also make more effective use of your time and enhance the overall ICANN Meeting experience. The Public Participation Committee will hold a public session in Toronto to discuss and review them."

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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."