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Minutes | Board Technical Committee (BTC) Meeting

Board Member and Liaison Attendees: Harald Alvestrand, Rafael Lito Ibarra, Merike Käo, Akinori Maemura (Chair), and Tripti Sinha.

Board Member with Apologies: Kaveh Ranjbar.

Other Board Members in Attendance: Avri Doria and Nigel Roberts.

ICANN Organization Attendees: Adiel Akplogan (Vice President for Technical Engagement), Susanna Bennett (SVP Chief Operating Officer), Franco Carrasco (Board Operations Specialist), James Caufield (VP, Risk Management), Linda Chin (Global Operations Director), Eric Evrard (Senior End User Support), Linna Hsii (Counsel), Matt Larson (VP Research), Erika Randall (Associate General Counsel), and Carlos Reyes (Strategic Policy Planning Director).


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

  1. BTC Session with NCAP Admin Co-Chairs – The Committee received a high level update on the progress of study 1 of the Name Collision Analysis Project (NCAP). Study 1 is a recap of all the published studies on name collision and reviews what data was used in these studies, assess whether that data might still be available, and determines what other data might be necessary to conduct further studies. The Vice President (VP) of Research informed the Committee that NCAP study 1 is on schedule, with a projected completion date of end-of- June 2020. The Committee was notified that a draft of the study was circulated among the NCAP discussion group, which submitted its comments to the contractor engaged by the Office of the Chief Technoligy Officer (OCTO) to perform the technical writing of the study. The Committee was informed that there would be two public comments periods: the initital public comment period on the draft report (which is scheduled to begin during the week of 10 February 2020), and a final public comments period on a revised version of the report (which is anticipated to close at the end of June).

    The VP of Research also provided the Committee with an update to the NCAP's co-chairs' efforts in addressing the list of questions to SSAC, which were originally included in the Board resolution from 2 November 2017. The Committee was informed that the NCAP co-chairs are leading an effort to form answers to those questions.

    A Committee member asked whether or not Study 1 will reveal the need for subsequent NCAP studies, and the Committee discussed evaluating this question after the public comment period, but also being proactive and beginning to look at potential budget implications if additional studies are needed.

    • Action Item:

      •  Merike Käo to confer with the Finance Committee about budget impacts for potential subsequent NCAP studies.
  2. Action Items Review – The Committee Chair established the agenda for the meeting, reviewed the open action items and addressed the following:

    • The Committee to continue discussing the interaction between the Committee, the Technical Liason Group (TLG) and the Technical Experts Group (TEG) – this is ongoing.
  3. Update on Priority Activities – The Strategic Policy Planning Director provided the Committee with an update regarding Recommendation 2 from the Proposed Governance Model for the Root Server System (RSSAC038), which is largely on track. Recommendation 2 is a two-part recommendation: one part calls for an evaluation of the cost of the current root server system, and the second component recommends evaluating the cost of the final model, which the Governance Working Group (GWG) will develop. The Committee was informed that a report discussing the cost evaluation of the current root server system, its timing, and its sequencing will be developed. The Committee was also informed that the Root Server System Governance Working Group has been established, and at its initial meeting the group will begin discussions about how it intends to structure its leadership and meeting cadence.

    In addition, the VP of Research provided the Committee with updates on three action items relating to the ICANN Managed Root Server (IMRS) strategy. The first action item discussed was the publication of a high-level summary of the IMRS strategy, which is expected to be completed during calendar Q1 2020. The second action item discussed was the methodological study on how to place IMRS "singles", which constitute the bulk of IMRS instances; specifically, the study would be an analysis on the topology of current IMRS singles and on traffic patterns to determine a methodology for placing new ones. The VP of Research informed the Committee that OCTO plans on having this methodological document completed within the first half of calendar 2020. The document would be published for public comment, which is proposed to take place within the third quarter of calendar 2020.

    The third action item discussed was for ICANN org to publish its thinking on what it would want to do with hyperlocal. The plan is to prepare a draft for internal discussion, and publish a final version for community input within the second quarter of calendar 2020.

    The Committee also engaged in a discussion regarding a risk assessment of the DNS Ecosystem and potential projects to address identified risks. The Committee also discussed whether such a risk assessment might be part of the the DNS Security Facilitation Function (aka Dragon Fruit) identified in the FY21-FY25 strategic plan.

    • Action Items:

      • The OCTO team to publish a high-level summary of the IMRS strategy, which is expected to be completed during calendar Q1 2020.
      • The OCTO team to develop a methodological study on how to place IMRS "singles".
      • The OCTO team to publish a paper addressing hyperlocal,which is anticipated to be published for community input within the second quarter of calendar 2020.
  4. Follow-up on Discussion on the Future of the Technical Liaison Group (TLG) and Technical Experts Group (TEG) – The VP for Technical Engagement informed the Committee that a formal meeting between the Committee and the TLG will be planned during ICANN67. The meeting will focus on assessing the interaction and work of the TLG in support of the Board over the past years, and will set direction for the coming years, with an attempt to align with the new Strategic Plan and Board priorities. The Committee was also informed that in regards to the TEG, there is no plan for an additional joint meeting going forward, and that the TEG will remain an informal group. Rather than having a formal meeting, the intent will be to open the current TEG mailing list for broader technical discussions.
  5. AOB – The Committee was informed that the Proposal for Future Root Zone KSK Rollovers was published for public comment. The Committee agreed to engage in further discussions about the topic after reviewing the summary and analysis of public comments that would be prepared by ICANN org at the conclusion of the public comment period.

    • Action Item:

      • The Committee to review the summary and analysis of public comments on the Proposal for Future Root Zone KSK Rollovers and cosndier possible recommendations to be summited to the Board for further consideration.

The Chair called the meeting to a close.

Published on 03 April 2020

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."