Skip to main content

ICANN Updates Authorization Process for Release of Two-Character ASCII Labels

Today, ICANN is announcing updates to the "Authorization Process for the Release of Two-Character ASCII Labels" to take into account additional direction from the ICANN Board. On 12 February 2015, the Board took action to accept advice from the Governmental Advisory Committee (GAC) on this subject issued in the GAC's 11 February 2015 Communiqué – Singapore [PDF, 113 KB], and directed the President and CEO, or his designee, to proceed immediately to implement the following changes to the process:

  • Implement improvements to the process to alert relevant governments when requests are initiated. Comments from relevant governments will be fully considered.
  • For new requests, the comment period will be for 60 days.
  • For requests with pending or completed comment periods, extend or re-open the comment period so that each request will undergo 60 days of comment period in total.

The updates to the process are effective as of 23 February 2015. The webpage where users can review requests has also been updated with several enhancements to improve navigability and allow users to find information more easily. New features include the following:

  • Requests can now be sorted by reference number, TLD, registry name and date posted.
  • The list of all requests for letter/letter two-character ASCII labels is now available for download as a .csv file.
  • A column has been added to identify whether a TLD has been granted a .BRAND specification.
  • The "View Comments" page has been updated to show all comments made in a calendar year, rather than showing comments on a month-by-month basis.

Please refer to the Authorization Process for Release of Two-Character ASCII Labels webpage for additional details.

# # #

About ICANN

ICANN's mission is to ensure a stable, secure and unified global Internet. 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. For more information please visit: www.icann.org


More Announcements
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."