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  • Public Meet Up with ICANN’s CEO in Washington DC on 27th January

    It is my pleasure to pass along the following message from ICANN’s President and CEO, Rod Beckstrom: Dear Community: As you know, I believe that ICANN’s CEO should be accessible to the community, but also to those who may not regularly participate in ICANN’s processes who...
  • Situation in Haiti and the DNS

    We have received a lot of communication concerning the devastation in Haiti, particularly its impact on Internet function and the .HT top-level domain. Here are the basic facts: We have been in contact with the administrators of .HT and they are alive and well, although...
  • IANA Business Excellence Explained

    “Every day, in every way, I’m getting better and better” — Émile Coué de Châtaigneraie For the last couple of years the ICANN community and board have set staff a strategic priority of excelling in core operations. In the current draft strategic plan for 2010-2013 the...
  • Nick Ashton-Hart now Senior Director, Participation and Engagement

    I’m pleased to announce the appointment of Nick Ashton-Hart Senior Director, Participation and Engagement. This position incorporates the duties of General Manager for Public Participation previously performed by Kieren McCarthy, with some fine-tuning of focus and effort....
  • Report from Outgoing GM Public Participation

    Kieren McCarthy’s last day at ICANN staff is today, and he wanted to share some of his perceptions and comments about his tenure and further areas for improvement. You can find his comments at: Kieren’s Comments Next week, I’ll be announcing who from ICANN staff will be...
  • 4 days in the Fast Track Process

    Just a brief message to keep you up to date. As of 00:00 UTC today – 4 days after the launch of the Fast Track Process we have new requests coming in. The total number is 10 requests. They spread over 5 different languages. Details about the process is at:...
  • Fast Track Status Update

    The IDN ccTLD Fast Track Process was successfully launched, as planned on 16 November 2009. It was done at exactly 00:00UTC with a very joyful count-down by the Fast Track Staff Team – followed by a wooohooo The launch went smoothly. We have since monitored the system and...
  • Video: ICANN open forum at IGF 2009

    ICANN ran an open forum at the IGF in Sharm El Sheikh yesterday. You can view a video of the event below. ICANN and the Internet Ecosystem Presentation [PDF, 1,440K]
  • Next Generation Internet Users?

    As we (at ICANN staff) have been preparing for the Fast Track launch, for tomorrow, it was suggested to me that I write a blog post about it. I could have written about all the hard work, the long hours, the aggressive testing of the online system, keeping it simple and...
  • Seoul meeting survey results

    Just after the Seoul meeting ended, we set up an online survey asking attendees what they thought about various aspects of it. Of 1,120 total attendees (excluding staff and Board), we emailed 540 of them using the information they had provided on registration and received...
  • ICANN at IGF 2009

    The CEO and the Chairman, along with a number of Board members, community members and staff will be present at the Internet Governance Forum in Sharm El Sheikh next week. Here is a quick rundown of ICANN-related events and information for participating both in person and...
  • Seoul meeting briefing note

    Briefing Note – Overall Summary of the Seoul Meeting What was it? ICANN’s 36th international public meeting was the last of three held annually to conduct policy development and outreach. It was hosted by ICANN (the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) and...
  • Congratulations to the new GNSO Council and chair

    Earlier today, Chuck Gomes was selected by the new GNSO Council as its chair. The voting procedure needed 60 percent of both of the new houses – contracted and non-contracted – to vote in favour. A first round vote with Chuck Gomes and Olga Cavalli saw Chuck Gomes win 100...
  • Update on website revamp

    Just before the Sydney meeting in June we announced we were running a usability study on the main ICANN website at icann.org and opened a survey to the community to provide their feedback. This is an update on that process just prior to the next meeting in Seoul, starting...
  • Seoul public forum topics and times

    The public forum in Seoul will take place on Thursday 29 October. You can find the latest information on the session webpage at http://sel.icann.org/public-forum. Session goals and outcomes: The public forum is the community’s opportunity to make comments on the main...
  • DNSSEC Signed ROOT by July 1, 2010

    ICANN Lisbon meeting in 2007 was perhaps one of the most successful and fun meetings I had attended as a staff member. This week I have returned to the same venue in Lisbon , Portugal with different feelings , duties and priorities. My excitement have reached to the...
  • Ask a question direct to the Board in Seoul

    An online question box where community members can ask questions directly to the ICANN Board and staff is open. The question box will take questions until Wednesday 14 October in preparation for the public forum at ICANN’s international public meeting in Sydney on...
  • Overwhelmed by ICANN material at the moment? Here’s a quick guide

    If you are a regular ICANN community member, it is likely you are currently feeling overwhelmed by the amount of material that has appeared in the past week. So here is a quick guide to help make sense of it all. Sections are: JPA/Affirmation Applicant Guidebook/new gTLDs...
  • Local communities … not just governments.

    As ICANN staff, it is hard to avoid the news when your organisation is the subject of a hearing held by the United States Congress. This week we saw another such hearing, where the House Judiciary committee discussed the future deployment of new top-level domains. A...
  • Community view: Bled ccTLD meeting review

    Last week I attended the “Second International Conference for ccTLD Registries and Registrars of CIS, Central and Eastern Europe”, held in the picturesque lakeside town of Bled, in Slovenia. Bled is one of the most beautiful places I’ve had the pleasure to visit and the...
  • Selecting which /8 to allocate to an RIR

    I’ve previously written about the problem with IPv4 /8s which have been used to number IP networks in an unofficial and improper way. The problem is that the unofficial usage makes it more difficult for ISPs to bring these addresses into use when they are officially...
  • We need YOU! Discuss solutions to your biggest ICANN problems

    At the joint meeting of ICANN’s advisory committees and supporting organizations in Sydney, a number of core issues and corresponding possible solutions were discussed and pulled into a summary document. We have put that document out in a radically different public...
  • The community view: registry/registrar regional gathering

    It’s not every day that ICANN comes to town. As an employee of Tucows, the third largest ICANN accredited registrar, I’m a little more tuned in to what’s going on with ICANN than the average person. But in my nearly three years at the company, I’ve never attended an ICANN...
  • Managing variants at the top-level

    Variant top-level domains (TLDs) and how they are managed is one of the most hotly discussed topics we are facing at the moment. What are variant TLDs, you ask? Well, that’s where the discussion begins… ICANN’s staff is currently producing implementation plans for both...

Recent Announcements

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."