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DNSO Names Council Whois Survey to Close Tomorrow

Marina del Rey, California, USA (13 August 2001) The period for responses to the ICANN Domain Name Supporting Organization (DNSO) survey on the Internet domain-name system's Whois system closes tomorrow, 14 August 2001. The Whois system provides public information about registrations of domain names. The online survey, which was originally posted on 10 June 2001, seeks information from users about several aspects of the Whois system, including their use of the Whois system, their views on its utility, and their needs for various Whois features. The survey is available in several languages, which may be reached through the following links:

The survey is part of the Whois Committee's detailed review of the domain-name system's Whois system to potentially formulate recommendations for policy improvements. The Committee will be reviewing all comments submitted and then drafting a report reflecting the views of the respondents, identifying where there is satisfaction with the Whois environment and where improvements to Whois policy could be considered.

The Whois Committee will give its preliminary report at the Names Council meeting during the ICANN Montevideo, Uruguay meeting, on Saturday, 8 September 2001.


New TLD Evaluation Process Planning Task Force Announced

Marina del Rey, California, USA (13 August 2001) Today the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) announced the membership of the New TLD Evaluation Process Planning Task Force. The inital members are:

  • Jaap Akkerhuis
  • Sebastien Bachollet
  • Marilyn S Cade
  • David R. Conrad
  • Michael Heltzer
  • Geoff Huston
  • Roberto Laorden
  • Vany Martinez
  • YJ Park

In addition, Mr. Adrian Pinder will serve as liaison between the New TLD Evaluation Process Planning Task Force and the Governmental Advisory Committee.

The establishment of the Task Force is in follow-up to the ICANN Board resolution passed at its June 2001 Stockholm Board meeting, directing ICANN President Stuart Lynn to form and chair the Task Force to develop recommendations for:

(a) a plan for monitoring the introduction of new TLDs and for evaluating their performance and their impact on the performance of the DNS; and

(b) a schedule on which a plan should be executed.

A report of the Task Force's progress will be be discussed at the ICANN Public Forum on 9 September 2001 in Montevideo.


Credit Card Payments Now Accepted

Marina del Rey, California, USA (13 August 2001) Beginning immediately, persons wishing to make contributions or certain other payments under US $2500 to ICANN may do so by credit card (Maestro, Mastercard, and Visa). This additional payment mechanism should simplify, and reduce bank service fees for, payments made by ICANN constituents outside the United States. To make a credit-card payment, please fill out and submit the Credit Card Payment Form posted on the ICANN website.


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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."