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ICANN Provides Update on Review of the Community Priority Evaluation Process

LOS ANGELES – 2 June 2017 – The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) today issued an update on the review of the Community Priority Evaluation (CPE) process.

Community Priority Evaluation is a method to resolve string contention, described in full detail in section 4.2 of the Applicant Guidebook (AGB). The evaluation determines if the community based application qualifies to earn priority and eliminate all non-community applicants in the contention set as well as any other non-prevailing community applicants. In CPE, the application is evaluated against the following four criteria: Community Establishment; Nexus between Proposed String and Community; Registration Policies, and Community Endorsement. The evaluations were conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU). The EIU was selected for this role because it offers premier business intelligence services, providing political, economic, and public policy analysis to businesses, governments, and organizations across the globe.

At various times in the implementation of the New gTLD Program, the ICANN Board has considered aspects of CPE process, including certain concerns that some applicants have raised regarding the process. On 17 September 2016, the ICANN Board directed the President and CEO, or his designees, to undertake a review of the process by which ICANN has interacted with the CPE provider. In his letter of 26 April 2017 to concerned parties [PDF, 405 KB], Chris Disspain, the Chair of the Board Governance Committee, provided additional information about the scope and status of the review. Below is additional information about the review, as well as the current status of the CPE process review.

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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."