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Board Global Relationships Committee (BGRC) Minutes

BGRC Attendees: Chris Disspain, Bertrand de La Chapelle, Erika Mann, Gonzalo Navarro – Chair, George Sadowsky, and Kuo-Wei Wu

Other Board Attendees: Sébastien Bachollet, Cherine Chalaby, Steve Crocker, Bill Graham, Thomas Narten, Ray Plzak, Thomas Roessler, Mike Silber, Judith Vasquez, and Suzanne Woolf

Staff Attendees: Akram Atallah – Chief Operating Officer, Rodrigo de la Parra – VP, Latin America, Elise Gerich – VP, IANA, Jamie Hedlund – VP, Government Affairs – Americas, Nigel Hickson – VP, Europe, John Jeffrey – General Counsel and Secretary, Xiaodong Lee – VP, Asia Pacific, Samantha Eisner, Diane Schroeder and Amy Stathos


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

  1. Costa Rica Ministerial Meeting – Staff provided an update on the ministerial meeting convened in Costa Rica prior to the opening of the ICANN meeting in Costa Rica, with representation by many countries from the region at many levels of government. Discussed inclusion of representatives from the Regional At-Large Organizations or At-Large Structures at similar conversations at future ICANN meetings.
  2. Review of Upcoming International Meetings of Relevance – Staff provided an update on upcoming meetings, with a focus on the regional work prior to the WCIT, as well as other meetings addressing internet governance issues.
    • Actions:
      • Staff to coordinate with Board to discuss further strategy issues, including how ICANN may coordinate with other parts of the community regarding participation.
      • Staff to provide BGRC with document summarizing actions and potential work to coordinate strategies for the next year on global relations.
  3. Letter Regarding VP Africa – Staff provided a brief summary of the letter received regarding suggestion of timing for hiring the VP Africa.
  4. Internationalization Survey – Staff provided an update on the creation of the Internationalization Survey, including the preparation of translations and the planning for release. The BGRC discussed potential revisions based on member comments, as well as how the survey will be publicized, including outreach from BGRC members and informing the community during the Costa Rica meeting that the survey will be forthcoming.
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."