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Announcements

Board Rejects .XXX Domain Application

The Board of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) today voted to...

ICANN Concludes Busy 28th Public Meeting in Lisbon, Portugal

More than 830 people from 81 countries gathered in Lisbon, Portugal for ICANN's 28th Public...

ICANN European At-Large Community MoU with ICANN Open for Public Comment

The European region of At-Large has reached a consensus on the contents of a Memorandum of...

ICANN Seeks Public Comments on Proposed Terms of Reference for Independent Review of the At-Large Advisory Committee (ALAC)

ICANN is seeking public comments on proposed Terms of Reference, which detail questions that...

Arrival of ITU Secretary General Delayed

Secretary General Touré's arrival at ICANN's 28th International Public Meeting in Lisbon,...

How To Interact With The ICANN Public Forum in Lisbon, Portugal

ICANN has changed the method by which it draws input into its public meetings — including the...

Independent Review of ICANN's Accountability and Transparency

Read the report [PDF, 358K]

As one of a number of initiatives aimed at further improvements in...

Media Advisory: Watch ICANN Board Meeting Live - Key Decisions Being Made

People from around the world can watch the ICANN Board meeting in Lisbon live on Friday 30...

Thousands of Voices Get Direct Say At ICANN

Internet users from three of ICANN's five global regions will now have direct input to the...

ICANN Formalizes Relationships with ccTLD Managers for Côte d'Ivoire and Russia

ICANN announced today that it has formalized its 20th and 21st relationships with country code...

Media Advisory: ICANN to Celebrate Three New Regional At-Large Organizations

ICANN and the Internet community will celebrate the creation of three Regional At-Large...

ITU Secretary-General Hamadoun I. Touré Will Address ICANN Friday in Lisbon, Portugal

As previously advised, the Secretary-General of the International Telecommunications Union...

Pre-Registration Now Open for ICANN's 25-29 June 2007 Meeting in San Juan, Puerto Rico

ICANN’s next meeting will be held 25–29 June 2007 in San Juan, Puerto Rico. The meeting is free...

ICANN Introduces New Website

Comment on the new ICANN website at the ICANN Blog

ICANN today introduces a new website with...

ICANN's 28th International Meeting Opens in Lisbon, Portugal

ICANN's 28th International meeting opened today in Lisbon, Portugal. It will see important...

International Telecommunications Union (ITU) Secretary General to Attend ICANN Lisbon Meeting

The Secretary General of the ITU, Dr Hamadoun Touré, will attend ICANN's Lisbon meeting this...

ICANN Formalizes Relationships with ccTLD Manager for Libya

ICANN announced today that it has signed an accountability framework with the country code top...

Updated Contractual Compliance Program

Read and post comments at the ICANN Blog

ICANN's updated Contractual Compliance program (...

Attention Registrants: RegisterFly Pending Termination

Registrants should be aware that ICANN has issued a formal notice of termination of...

ICANN Releases Beta-3 Version of TLD Verification Code

ICANN has issued today a new version of code intended to assist software developers and...

Registrar Accreditation Policy and Process Must be Reviewed

President and CEO of ICANN, Dr Paul Twomey today called for major review of ICANN’s Registrar...

Final Task Force Report On Whois Services

Final Task Force Report on Whois Services

The Whois Task Force completed its work and sent its...

Termination of RegisterFly.com Registrar Accreditation Agreement

ICANN today issued a formal notice of termination of RegisterFly.com's Registration...

ICANN Posts Request for Proposals for Independent Evaluator for Nominating Committee Review, and Final Terms of Reference for This Review

Updated 25 April 2007
Note: deadline for responding to this RFP has been extended to 9 May 2007

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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."