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Board Governance Committee (BGC) Meeting Minutes

BGC Attendees:  Cherine Chalaby, Chris Disspain, Olga Madruga-Forti, Ray Plzak, and Bruce Tonkin – Chair.

Executive and Staff Attendees: John Jeffrey – General Counsel and Secretary; Megan Bishop, Michelle Bright, Elizabeth Le, and Amy Stathos

BGC Apologies: Ram Mohan, Mike Silber


The following is a summary of discussion, actions taken, and actions identified:

  1. Minutes – The BGC approved the minutes from the meetings on 21 November 2013 and 12 December 2013.

  2. Reconsideration Request 13-16 – Staff briefed the BGC regarding dot Sport Limited's Request 13-16 seeking reconsideration of the Expert Determination in favor of SportAccord's objection to the Requester's application for the .SPORTS gTLD.  After discussion and consideration of the Request, the BGC concluded that the Requester failed to state the proper grounds for reconsideration because it failed to demonstrate a policy or process violation.  With respect to Requester's claim that the Expert Panel failed to apply the requisite ICANN standards, processes and policies in reaching the Determination, the BGC concluded that the Requester failed to demonstrate that the Panel applied the wrong standard(s) or created a new standard(s) or test for material detriment, as the Requester suggested.  With respect to the Requester's claim that the Expert violated established policy or process by failing to disclose material information relevant to his appointment, the BGC determined that the Requester provides no evidence demonstrating that the Expert failed to follow the applicable ICC procedures for independence and impartiality.  The BGC noted that the Bylaws authorize the BGC to make a final determination on Reconsideration Requests brought regarding staff action or inaction; the BGC still has the discretion, but is not required, to recommend the matter to the Board for consideration, as the BGC deems necessary.  Accordingly, the BGC concluded that its determination on Request 13-16 is final; no consideration by the New gTLD Program Committee (NGPC) is warranted.

  3. Reconsideration Request 13-17 – Staff briefed the BGC on Request 13-17 submitted by GCCIX, W.L.L. seeking reconsideration of the NGPC's 4 June 2013 resolution accepting the Governmental Advisory Committee's (GAC's) consensus advice to reject the Requester's application for the .GCC string.  After discussion and consideration of the Request, the BGC concluded that the Requester failed to state the proper grounds for reconsideration.  The BGC noted that the Request is untimely and fails on this basis alone.  Notwithstanding, the BGC did consider the merits.  With respect to Requester's claim about GAC processes, the BGC noted that reconsideration is available for challenges to staff or Board actions or inactions, not for challenges to advisory committees or other ICANN bodies.  With respect to the claim that the NGPC failed to provide rationale for its rejection of the .GCC application, the BGC determined that to the extent the Requester claims that the NGPC acted without considering material information, the information identified was not available at the time of the 4 June 2013 Resolution and the Requester did not identify how the information would have changed the decision taken.  Similarly, the with respect to the claims that the NGPC failed to explain why objection proceedings on the .GCC application were terminated or why the NGPC allegedly disregarded GNSO input, the BGC determined that the Request did not support reconsideration.  The BGC recommended that the NGPC deny Request 13-17.

    • Action:  Staff to submit the BGC Recommendation to the NGPC for consideration.
  4. Reconsideration Request 13-18 – Staff briefed the BGC regarding International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association's Request 13-18 seeking reconsideration of ICANN's acceptance of the Expert Determination dismissing the Requester's community objection to the application for .LGBT.  After discussion and consideration of the Request, the BGC concluded that the Requester failed to state the proper grounds for reconsideration.  With respect to Requester's claim that the Expert Panels were inconsistent with ICANN policies, the BGC determined that the Panel referenced and applied the correct standard for a community objection.  With respect to the Requester's other claims that the Panel introduced future contention resolution proceedings into the findings and that the Panel should have addressed the Requester's Objection independent of other objections and other applications for gTLDs related to the gay community, the BGC concluded that the Requester has identified no policy or process that restricts the Panel's ability to refer to or consider other ICANN proceedings involving the string at issue.  On the contrary, the New gTLD Dispute Resolution Procedure states that, in addition to applying the standards, the Panel "may refer to and base its findings upon the statements and documents submitted and any rules or principles that it determines to be applicable."  The BGC noted that the Bylaws authorize the BGC to make a final determination on Reconsideration Requests brought regarding staff action or inaction; the BGC still has the discretion, but is not required, to recommend the matter to the Board for consideration, as the BGC deems necessary.  Accordingly, the BGC concluded that its determination on Request 13-18 is final; no consideration by the NGPC is warranted

Published on 23 January 2014

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."