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Markus Kummer

ICANN Board Member

Forum Profile

Biography

Markus Kummer is an independent consultant specializing in Internet governance and policy. Until September 2014 he was the Internet Society's Senior Vice President. He joined the Internet Society in 2011, to assume the position of Vice-President in charge of public policy. Before, he worked for the United Nations, first as Executive Coordinator of the Working Group on Internet Governance and subsequently of the Secretariat supporting the Internet Governance. In this capacity he was responsible for preparing and organizing the first five annual IGF meetings between 2006 and 2010. In 2013, he was asked by the United Nations to chair the preparatory process for the annual IGF meeting held in Bali, Indonesia.

Markus joined the United Nations in 2004, after holding the position of eEnvoy of the Swiss Foreign Ministry. He was a member of the Swiss delegation during the first phase of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) where he chaired several negotiating groups, including the groups dealing with human rights and Internet governance.

Markus served as a career diplomat in several functions in the Swiss Foreign Ministry since 1979. He was posted to the Embassies of Switzerland to Portugal, Austria. Norway and Turkey as well as the Swiss Mission to the United Nations in Geneva.

Between 1998 and 2002 Markus was seconded to the European Free Trade Association (EFTA), where he was in charge of administering and negotiating Free Trade Agreements with partner countries such as Canada, Mexico, Chile, Singapore, Egypt, Jordan, Tunisia, Macedonia and the Palestinian Authority.

Before joining the Swiss diplomatic service, Markus worked as a journalist at the news desk of Swiss Radio International in Bern. He has a master's degree in languages, literature and journalism from the University of Bern.

Markus is based in Geneva, Switzerland.

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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."