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Minutes | Board Technical Committee Meeting

Board Member and Liaison Attendees: Harald Alvestrand, Avri Doria, Rafael Lito Ibarra, Merike Kaeo, Akinori Maemura (Chair), Kaveh Ranjbar, and Tripti Sinha.

Other Board Members in Attendance: Becky Burr, Danko Jevtovic, León Sanchez and Matthew Shears.

ICANN Organization Attendees: Adiel Akplogan (Vice President for Technical Engagement), Susanna Bennett (SVP Chief Operating Officer), Xavier Calvez (SVP Chief Financial Officer), Franco Carrasco (Board Operations Specialist), David Conrad (Chief Technology Officer), Samantha Eisner (Deputy General Counsel), Dan Halloran (Deputy General Counsel), Linna Hsii (Counsel), Aaron Jimenez (Board Operations Senior Coordinator), Vinciane Koenigsfeld (Director, Board Operations), and Carlos Reyes (Strategic Policy Planning Director).


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

  1. Action Items Review – After establishing the agenda for the meeting, the Committee reviewed the open action items and addressed the following:

    • The Committee unanimously approved the 4 February 2019 preliminary report.
  2. Root Server System Governance – The Strategic Policy Planning Director provided the Committee with an update on the concept paper that was presented to the Root Server System Advisory Committee (RSSAC) in mid-February. The Committee received an overview on the two parts of the Concept Paper. Part one envisions a cooperation and governance model for the Root Server System (RSS) based on RSSAC037. Part two outlines a community-driven process to design, consult and implement a new cooperation and governance model for the RSS based on recommendation 1 of RSSAC038. The Committee also received a briefing on some of the initial feedback from RSSAC which fell mostly in three areas: first, concerns were expressed about what independence of the root server operators actually means; second, there are concerns about ICANN org performing both the finance and secretariat functions; and third, there are concerns in the composition of the Governance Working Group. Following the briefing, the Committee discussed some questions and concerns they had about the Concept Paper.

    • Action Item:

      • The Policy team to provide the Committee with a new version of the Concept Paper after integrating all the informal feedback received from their interactions with the RSSAC.
  3. ICANN Managed Root Server (IMRS) Strategy – The Vice President for Technical Engagement provided the committee with an update on the implementation of the IMRS strategy which currently includes several key elements. The first is looking at how to be more effective and efficient in distributing IMRS singles. The second is evaluating options to add to the existing IMRS clusters. Two new elements introduced by the strategy are 1) encouraging the deployment of hyperlocal as a way to increase the availability and resiliency of the root zone that ICANN org manages; and 2) exploring "IMRS cloud" as way to host IMRS instances in the cloud. The last point of the implementation strategy is to look for ways to encourage the resolver operator to engage more with ICANN. Currently, the Office of the Chief Technology Officer (OCTO) team is investigating on the steps to take to operationalize this strategy.

  4. Name Collision Analysis Project (NCAP) Update – The Chief Technology Officer (CTO) provided the Committee with a brief update on where the Committee left off in its previous discussion regarding the NCAP proposal. The Chair reminded the Committee that the decision to move forward with OCTO's version of Study 1 was resolved at the 4 March meeting. The Committee engaged in a discussion regarding the financial aspects of the proposal and noted that there should be some transparency provided to the Board regarding Studies 2 and 3.

  5. Root Server Crisis Communication Plan – The Chief Technology Officer (CTO) provided the Committee with an update on one of the goals set by the Compensation Committee to the CEO. A specific goal assigned to the ICANN CEO is for OCTO to work with other root server operators to develop a plan that facilitates the coordination of communications in the event of a crisis in the Root Server System. OCTO reported that it is currently working with ICANN DNS Engineering to collaborate with interested root server operators to document a crisis communication plan.

  6. Any Other Business (AOB) – The Committee chair noted there wasn't enough time perform an ITI demo. The Committee then briefly discussed how the joint meeting with the Technical Liaison Group (TLG) and the Technical Experts Group (TEG) will be structured before calling the meeting to a close.

Published on 10 April 2019

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."