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ICANN Selects election.com to Conduct One of World's Largest All-Internet Votes | More Than 76,000 Registered Members from Around the World to Cast Their Votes Online in First ICANN Vote

Marina del Rey, CA and Garden City, NY, September 21, 2000 - The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), the technical coordination body for the Internet, and election.com, a leading global Internet election company, announced today that election.comwill conduct ICANN's first worldwide online vote. ICANN's At-Large Members will choose five Directors for the ICANN Board in one of the world's largest all-Internet votes to date.

Since this is ICANN's first online vote, we needed a company that could provide assurance of reliable security for the balloting as well as experience in working with a diverse, global online membership," said Esther Dyson, Chairman of the ICANN Board. "Among the several voting system proposals we considered, we were impressed by election.com'strack record and international experience, and its commitment to security. In addition, election.comwas willing to work with us on a process unprecedented in its geographic breadth. Overall, election.comwas simply the best match for ICANN's needs."

ICANN's At-Large Membership program is intended to allow Internet users from all over the globe to have a voice in ICANN's technical policymaking structure for the Internet's domain name and numbering systems.

Through a worldwide online vote, ICANN's At Large Members will choose five Directors for the ICANN Board, one from each of the five geographic regions (Africa, Asia/Australia/Pacific, Europe, Latin America/Caribbean, and North America). More than 76,000 Internet users around the world have become At-Large members of ICANN, and are eligible to vote over a 10-day voting period from October 1-10, 2000.

"As the premier global Internet elections company, election.comis proud to be working with ICANN-- the technical coordination body for the Internet with members around the world," said Mel Schrieberg, President and COO, election.com. "election.comhas a long list of satisfied customers, from the Arizona Democratic Party and the Democratic National Committee to the Pennsylvania State Employees Credit Union. We look forward to working with ICANN to make their first online vote an unquestionable success."

As part of the ICANN At Large Membership process, election.comwill provide a secure login system and a voting response and tabulation system. The voting system will be available to members in multiple languages, and voters will be able to use the system on a 24-hour basis to accommodate busy schedules and different time zones.

election.comhas conducted several global elections for clients with members located around the world, including the Sierra Club and the United Nations Federal Credit Union. election.comis currently conducting elections for the IEEE Computer Society, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Pharmaceutical Association, the Institute of Food Technologists and the Alliance for Continuing Medical Education. In addition, the company recently secured contracts to conduct elections for the American Society for Microbiology and the State Bar of Georgia.

Contacts

Andrew McLaughlin
ICANN
310.823.9358

Jason Howard
election.com
516.248.7502

About ICANN
The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) is a technical coordination body for the Internet. Created in October 1998 by a broad coalition of the Internet's business, technical, academic and user communities, ICANN is assuming responsibility for a set of technical functions previously performed under the US government contract by IANA and other groups. As a non-profit, private-sector corporation, ICANN is dedicated to preserving the operational stability of the Internet; to promoting competition; to achieving broad representation of global Internet communities; and to developing policy through private-sector, bottom-up, consensus-based means.

For information on ICANN At Large membership process, including the nominees, schedule, rules, and the online Question & Answer Forum, see http://members.icann.org

About election.com
election.comInc., the leading global Internet election company, provides public- and private-sector election services for governments, associations, nonprofit organizations, labor unions, school districts, credit unions, pension funds and corporations around the world. Committed to broadening voter participation in the democratic process, election.comalso provides online voter registration services that enable U.S. citizens, whether they live in the country or abroad, to request an absentee ballot and register to vote online. Named one of the top 50 privately held companies by Red Herring magazine, election.comis headquartered in Garden City, N.Y., and has offices in Washington, D.C.; Austin, Texas; London; Paris; Sydney, Australia; and Christchurch, New Zealand.


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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."