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Minutes | Special Meeting of the Board

ICANN's Board of Directors held a meeting, duly noticed, by teleconference on 8 August 2003. Directors Vint Cerf (Chair), Ivan Moura Campos, Mouhamet Diop, Masanobu Katoh, Veni Markovski, Thomas Niles, Michael D. Palage, Hualin Qian and Njeri Rionge were present. Board Liaisons John Klensin, Steve Crocker, and Francisco A. Jesus Silva also participated. Esmé Smith with Jones Day, outside counsel to ICANN and acting as secretary for the meeting, was also in attendance.

Approval of .name Second-Level Registration Offering

The meeting was called to consider a proposal by GNR regarding the creation of a second level domain product for the .name domain. After discussion by the Board, it was determined that staff would be authorized to negotiate changes to the .name registry agreement and appendices to the extent, and only to the extent, necessary to allow GNR to go forward with such second level domain product. Accordingly, the following resolutions were presented:

Whereas, The Global Name Registry Limited ("GNR") is the registry operator for the .name top-level domain;

Whereas, under GNR's Registry Agreement as entered into with ICANN on 1 August 2001, GNR is limited to allowing registrations in .name only at the third level;

Whereas, GNR's view is that such proposed second level domain registrations would be attractive to individual end-users, and could be offered by registrars within their normal domain name product line, thus increasing exposure of GNR's new second level product, and existing third-level product to registrants;

Whereas, GNR was requested to submit a formal topic paper and make a presentation at the public forum meeting in Montreal, held on 25 June 2003, asking those who believed they might be harmed by the implementation of the proposal by GNR to provide input and voice concerns;

Whereas, following such presentation, few comments were submitted, and either responded to by GNR, or, to the extent prefaced on a mis-understanding, GNR attempted to clarify GNR's proposal for the relevant party;

Whereas, based on the review and discussion of the proposal by the Board, and comments received on the proposal, the Board has determined it is unlikely the legitimate interests of others could be harmed by the implementation of the proposal by GNR to offer the second level registration product;

Whereas, ICANN's Registry Agreement with GNR allows such agreement to be amended by the mutual consent of the two parties;

The following resolution was presented for consideration by Mr. Palage, and seconded by Mr. Niles:

Resolved [03.140], that the ICANN Board authorizes the ICANN President and staff to negotiate and implement modifications to GNR's Registry Agreement with ICANN for operation of the .name top-level domain as deemed necessary to provide for the offering of such .name second level registration product by GNR, and provided that the offering of such second level registration product by GNR would be in accordance with and consistent with all applicable contractual limitations in the Registry Agreement.

(The Board approved the above resolution by a 9-0-0 vote.)

Following a short discussion among the members of the Board regarding items that might be appropriately further discussed in more detail at the next meeting of the Board, the meeting was adjourned at 13:30 UTC.

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."