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Ask a question direct to the Board in Sydney

An online question box where community members can ask questions directly to the ICANN Board and staff has opened today.

The question box will take questions from Wednesday 27 May until Wednesday 17 June in preparation for the public forum at ICANN’s international public meeting in Sydney on Thursday 25 June.

Questions are limited to two per individual and 50 words in length each. They can cover any topic related to ICANN and its work. Answers will be provided either during the public forum or emailed and published in the weeks following the meeting.

You can find the form below, as well as on the Sydney meeting website, the public participation website and on the participation pages on ICANN’s main website.

Mexico City experience

The question box was attempted for the first time in Mexico City in March 2009 as a way to allow remote participants to ask questions directly of ICANN’s Board and staff for the Sydney meeting. It was however also open to those that were attending the meeting in person but felt uncomfortable asking a question at the public microphone.

The box was very popular, eliciting 96 questions from 36 individuals. Answers to every questions were prepared and published on ICANN’s main website, the blog and the Mexico City meeting site.

Through the experience three changes have been made this time around:

  • Questions have been limited to two per person (the most that people in the physical public forum are typically capable of asking)
  • Permissible question length has been extended from 30 to 50 words to give people more room to frame a question
  • The deadline have been brought forward by a week to give staff and Board more time to go through the questions and prepare answers

If you can’t see the form below, you can go to it directly at:


    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."