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New gTLD Auctions Updates – First Auction Confirmed

Why this matters

You can find additional information on Auctions on the New gTLD Program Auctions page: http://newgtlds.icann.org/en/applicants/auctions

ICANN has updated the Auction Schedule for New gTLD applicants with strings in contention sets. The schedule now lists the participants confirmed for the first Auction on 4 June 2014, and the rescheduling of some sets based on requested postponements.

When Applicants were issued Intent to Auction notifications, they were given an option to postpone the Auction under one of the following circumstances:

  • All members of the contention set request the Auction be postponed

    Or

  • Any applicant in a contention set requests deferment of the Auction until the Name Collision Occurrence Management Framework (the Framework) has been finalized.

Postponements granted as a result of unanimous agreement among all members of the contention set have resulted in deferral of two auctions. The updated schedule postponements requested based on the Framework have only been granted for those sets previously scheduled for the first Auction: those contention sets that requested a postponement for this reason from the first Auction have been moved to the second Auction. Should the Framework not be finalized by the confirmation deadline (21 days prior to an Auction) for the second auction, additional deferrals will be issued. In the updated schedule those contention sets marked with an asterisk (*) have been granted postponements.

The two applicants confirmed for the first Auction have received their confirmations from ICANN. Applicants will receive a notification from ICANN confirming their Auction date at least 21 days prior to the Auction. As Auctions are the method of last resort, Applicants may self-resolve a contention set up to 7 days prior to the Auction.

Auction Date Advancement

Additionally, ICANN is introducing the opportunity for applicants to request that their Auction be advanced – scheduled for a date earlier than originally scheduled. Similar to a request for postponement, an advancement of the auction date requires all members of the contention set to submit the request. To request advancement, the Application's primary contact must submit the Advancement Request form [PDF, 216 KB] via a case in the Customer Portal at least 45 calendar days prior to the new desired Auction date.

Auction Rules

ICANN has issued a new version of the Auction Rules [PDF, 291 KB] to address several potential issues. One of the more notable changes addresses the eligibility requirements for participating in Auctions. In an effort to prevent any undue disruptions to the Auction Schedule, the following condition has been removed from the eligibility requirements in paragraph 8:

d) Finalized any and all change requests

Because all applications that are in contention sets have passed Evaluation, ICANN believes that in most cases, there is no reason to delay an Auction merely because a change request has been filed, and that the evaluation and processing of the change request generally should proceed independently and in parallel with the Auction timeline. ICANN reserves the right not to send Intent to Auction notices and/or not to proceed with an Auction if a change request by one or more applicants in the Contention Set is pending, but believes that in most instances the Auction should proceed without further delay.

Auctions Bidder Training

Finally, ICANN is pleased to announce the availability of new Bidder Training materials. Power Auctions has prepared three brief training videos to help Bidders prepare for an Auction including videos covering account set-up prior to an Auction, the Auction process, and Post Auction activities. The Videos are posted on the video tutorial page, and are also available via the Auctions landing page.

For more information, please visit the Auctions webpage.


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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."