Welcome to ICANN's First Policy Forum in Latin America and the Caribbean
Welcome to Panama City, a city both historical and modern, situated where the Atlantic meets the Pacific. We are honored to host the global Internet community in this city for ICANN62, the first ICANN Policy Forum to be held in the region.
Over the course of four days of meetings, we will focus on current policy development work. I encourage you to take advantage of the shorter meeting and fewer number of sessions to make your voices heard and to learn more about the work of other constituencies.
The ICANN62 Policy Forum is also a great opportunity for our regional community to expand its involvement in policy development relating to the Domain Name System, and its participation in ICANN's Supporting Organizations and Advisory Committees. Through these and other groups, the ICANN community develops policies using a bottom-up, transparent, and multistakeholder model. For this model to work, we need as many global stakeholders as possible to get involved in the ICANN community.
If you are interested in learning more about how you can participate, email our regional team at: email@example.com. We will be happy to guide you and put you in contact with other community members involved in ICANN's policy work. I also encourage you to explore the Developing Policy at ICANN webpage, which features a policymaking infographic and a short educational video, both available in all six U.N. languages.
Bringing new voices to the ICANN community is crucial to strengthening our policy development processes. I look forward to seeing you at ICANN62 in Panama City!
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."