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The Fourth Middle East Domain Name System (DNS) Forum to Take Place in Cairo, Egypt

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The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), in partnership with the Internet Society (ISOC), is organizing the fourth edition of the Middle East DNS Forum. The event, hosted by the National Telecom Regulatory Authority (NTRA) of Egypt, will take place on 22 and 23 May under the theme "Strengthening Digitial Presence in the Middle East".

The Forum will cover topics related to the global domain marketplace, with regional perspectives from Europe, the Middle East and Africa, and new industry trends resulting from the introduction of over 1000 new generic top-level domains (gTLDs). Other topics to be covered will include the regional digital economy, hosting businesses and entrepreneurship in Egypt, and the role of women in the tech industry.

Cherine Chalaby, Vice-Chairman of the ICANN Board, and Akram Atallah, President of ICANN's Global Domains Division (GDD), will be giving keynote speeches at the forum's opening session. The Egyptian Minister of Communications and Information Technology Yasser El-Kady will also address the audience at the opening ceremony along with officials from the NTRA and ISOC.

The objective of this annual event is to bring together interested parties from the region and world experts in the field, to share experiences and update the audience on new developments in the domain industry on both a global and regional level. The forum provides participants with an opportunity to:

  • Interact with ICANN leadership and industry experts on recent developments and top trends in the global domain industry
  • Discuss various business, technical and policy aspects of the domain industry
  • Learn about new approaches to establish and expand commercial online presence

This edition of the Middle East DNS Forum builds on the previous forums held across the region, namely in the UAE (2014), Jordan (2015) and Tunisia (2016). By holding the forum in different parts of the Middle East, ICANN aims to provide equal opportunity to inform the region's different communities about the domain industry and engage with them on how best to strengthen the Middle East's digital presence.

ICANN is committed to helping develop a stronger and dynamic regional domain industry, and we look forward to this fourth edition of the Middle East DNS Forum.

The agenda and full list of speakers are available at the forum's website.

You can register for the event here.

Remote participation will be available to those interested in participating, but unable to attend. The link will be provided as the event approaches.

Media Contacts:

Luna Madi
Communications Director, EMEA
Istanbul, Turkey
Tel: +90 533 0313505

Buket Coskuner
Global Communications Coordinator, EMEA
Istanbul, Turkey
Tel: +90 533 4876254

About ICANN:

ICANN's mission is to help ensure a stable, secure and unified global Internet. To reach another person on the Internet, you need to type an address into your computer or other device – a name or a number. That address must be unique so computers know where to find each other. ICANN helps coordinate and support these unique identifiers across the world. ICANN was formed in 1998 as a not-for-profit public-benefit corporation and a community with participants from all over the world.

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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."