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Applicant Guidebook comment period update

The first comment period for the Applicant Guidebook has now closed for English speakers, and will close on 7 January for those responding in Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian or Spanish.

The responses sent in will now be carefully compiled and summarized. In the New Year, this summary will be published and soon thereafter, suggested alterations to the Guidebook based on that feedback will be put back out to the community.

The revised Guidebook will then be put out to a second comment period in order to enable fine tuning.

As of Monday 22 December, this first public comment period has received 317 comments through its dedicated online forums. Respondents come from 24 different countries and each of the five global regions.

Respondents were given the option of responding to the Guidebook as a whole, or individually to one of the six modules that makes up the Guidebook. Just over half (55 percent) chose to comment on the Guidebook as a whole; the remainder (with a small overlap) made specific comments about the modules.

Of the modules, the fifth module, covering the legal agreement between new registries and ICANN received the most comments (43 of 141, or 30 percent). That was followed by Module 1, which covered, among other things, the costs of applications: it received 32 comments or 23 percent. Thereafter, evaluation procedures (17 percent); dispute resolution (13 percent); string contention (12 percent); and terms and conditions (5 percent).

We look forward to continuing the conversation and revision process in 2009.



    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."