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Request for Proposal: Rights Protection Mechanisms Survey

LOS ANGELES – 29 January 2018 – The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers ("ICANN") is seeking to identify one or more suppliers qualified to develop and conduct survey(s) to assess the use and effectiveness of Sunrise and Trademark Claims Rights Protection Mechanisms (RPMs). These RPMs are services provided through ICANN's Trademark Clearinghouse (TMCH) for trademark owners.

RPMs refer to those policies and processes developed to provide workable mechanisms for trademark owners to either prevent or remedy certain unauthorized use of their trademarks in the domain name system. The Sunrise service provides priority access to rights holders to request domain names associated with their trademark(s). The Trademark Claims service provides notification to: (a) a potential domain name registrant attempting to register a domain name that matches a trademark record entered into the TMCH, and (b) a rights holder after registration of a matching domain name.

As Sunrise and Trademark Claims RPMs have not been subject to policy review to date, no comprehensive, publicly available data currently exists that measures their effectiveness. By surveying the specific respondent groups identified by the ICANN community as most affected by Sunrise and Trademark Claims RPMs, ICANN aims to assist the community to evaluate the efficacy of these RPMs, as well as bolster ICANN's data collection efforts related to the RPMs.

For a complete overview of the RFP including the timeline, please see here [PDF, 86 KB].

Indications of interest are to be received by emailing RPMs.Survey-rfp@icann.org. Proposals should be electronically submitted by 23:59 UTC on 09 March 2018 using ICANN's sourcing tool, access to which may be requested via the same email address above.


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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""icann.org"" is not an IDN."