New ICANN Bylaws
Today, on behalf of the ICANN Board, I am pleased to announce the adoption of the new ICANN Bylaws, which reflect changes made as a result of the IANA Stewardship Transition package of proposals. The new Bylaws are the result of hundreds of hours of work by the community and the legal teams. The Regional Internet Registries Service Level Agreement and Internet Engineering Task Force Memorandum of Understanding Supplemental Agreement have also been approved for signing and will go into effect after the transition.
Later today, ICANN will be transmitting the new Bylaws to the U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA). NTIA has previously stated that adoption of the new Bylaws is required for them to complete their review of the proposals, which is expected to occur in June.
This is an important milestone for ICANN and the community. As we await the release of NTIA’s report, we continue to prepare for implementation of the transition proposals. We thank everyone for their continued hard work and support during this transition process.
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."