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Board Global Relationships Committee (BGRC) Minutes

BGRC Attendees: Bertrand de La Chapelle, Bill Graham (Chair), Olga Madruga-Forti, Erika Mann, Gonzalo Navarro, George Sadowsky, and Kuo-Wei Wu

Other Board Attendees: Sébastien Bachollet, Cherine Chalaby, Steve Crocker, Francisco da Silva, Chris Disspain, Heather Dryden, Ram Mohan, Ray Plzak, Jonne Soininen, and Bruce Tonkin

Staff Attendees: Susanna Bennett – Chief Operating Officer. John Jeffrey – General Counsel and Secretary; Megan Bishop, Michelle Bright, Mandy Carver, Sally Costerton, Rodrigo de la Parra, Samantha Eisner, Baher Esmat, Elise Gerich, Jamie Hedlund, Nigel Hickson, Tarek Kamel, Elizabeth Le, David Olive, Karine Perset, Theresa Swineheart, and Amy Stathos.


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

  1. Approval of Minutes – The BGRC approved the minutes from the previous meeting.
  2. Bali Internet Governance Forum (IGF) – The BGRC received an update on the upcoming IGF that will take place on 22-25 October 2013 in Bali, Indonesia.  Staff reported that the conference will introduce a new format with an overarching theme and subthemes, including the proposed overarching theme, which will be building bridges, enhancing multistakeholder cooperation for growth and sustainable development. The proposed subthemes include access and diversity, in particular, the Internet as an engine for growth and sustainable development; openness, in particular human rights, freedom of expression, and free flow of information; security, enhanced cooperation, and Internet governance principles. The BGRC then discussed ICANN's intended participation at the IGF.
  3. New Government Engagement Strategy – The BGRC received an update on the status of ICANN's new government engagement strategy. The strategy is intended to be a three-year plan, focusing on enhancing the role of currently non-participating governments in the ICANN multistakeholder model, enhancing ICANN participation at the global Internet governance debate at the national, regional, and global level, and engagement plans for each region to support the multistakeholder approach to Internet governance.  The strategy aims at helping facilitate dialogue among governments, and promoting their participation in a way that is relevant to them and to the ICANN community. All activities of this strategy will be fully coordinated with the GAC, with ATRT2, will be overseen by ICANN President and Board, and will receive the necessary support from staff. The ICANN community will be kept informed and will be involved during the different implementation phases.
  4. Internet Governance Discussions – Bertrand de La Chapelle presented on the current environment of Internet governance discussions globally.
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."