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Minutes - Public Participation Committee (PPC)

PPC members present: Dennis Jennings, Thomas Roessler, Mike Silber, Katim Touray and Jean-Jacques Subrenat – chair

PPC member absent and sending apologies: Thomas Narten

Staff Members Present: Samantha Eisner, Kieren McCarthy (KM), Robby Markowicz, Amy Stathos and Nick Tomasso


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

  1. Received an update from staff on the action list identified at previous meeting.
    • Actions:
      • Staff to continue to work towards the production of a report to the PPC on the next steps in remote participation, for submission prior to the end of August.
      • Staff to continue to work on development of a Best Practices for Remote Participation paper for PPC review.
  2. Discussed implementation of document deadline policy after approval by the Board in July 2009, and how to prepare the community, particularly the Supporting Organizations and the Advisory Committees, to implement the policy for all documents being prepared for the Seoul meeting. Also discussed the timing of posting the new policy for public comment to coincide with the inter-sessional (in between international public meetings) PPC public session prior to Seoul and to allow for the use of a more robust public comment software tool. Discussed how to best prepare participants for international meetings, including standardization of formats and adherence to a uniform style guide.
    • Actions:
      • Staff to provide reminder to PPC on the development of the 15 working day deadline period.
      • Staff to prepare a short paper for the PPC on ways to take advantage of the opportunities for preparation arising out of the early publication of papers prior to international meetings.
  3. Discussed the public comment process, and how to strengthen the organization’s accountability and transparency while presenting information and seeking community input in a more streamlined and accessible format.
    • Action:
      • Staff to provide a note for the PPC’s review regarding requirements for public comment.
      • Staff to provide a paper to the PPC summarizing suggestions and addressing ways, if any, to accelerate and simplify the public comment process without sacrificing accountability and transparency, or organizational requirements.
  4. Discussed process to allow for documents to be publicly accessed in a uniform and coherent way, including consistent numbering, version control and version references. Also discussed the need to strive for the use of open formats (such as html and PDF) to allow for wide accessibility.
    • Actions:
      • PPC Chair to forward PPC input to the ICANN Chief Operating Officer (COO) to begin discussions on how to address.
      • Staff to provide the PPC Chair with any specific items that may be worthy of note in the conversation with the COO.
  5. Discussed the need for use of open standards in ICANN’s online presence and public participation systems, including a brief description of what tools are already being used and those resources that are being researched to improve the communication process. The PPC stressed the need to focus first on the use of open standards, understanding that proprietary software may be a more favorable solution in some instances.
    • Action:
      • PPC to forward a note on the use of open standards to the rest of the ICANN Board for review, comment and conversation.
  6. Received update on remote participation tools, including recent experiences with various software, and discussed the need to remain open to more universally accessible solutions where appropriate. Discussed the need to alter the base-level data being presented to allow for better integration for the public. Also discussed the need to clarify the taxonomy of “remote participation.”
    • Action:
      • Staff to include a reference taxonomy and research regarding alternative tools in the “next steps” paper already being drafted for the PPC.
  7. Discussed scheduling of upcoming international meetings and potential new models for the international meeting schedules to meet the organization’s objectives for the meetings and balancing the amount of preparation required for the international meetings. Also discussed the need to remain inclusive of those outside of the domain name industry and to continue a strong focus on those served by ICANN through its performance of the IANA function.
    • Action:
      • Prior to the next PPC meeting, staff to prepare a preliminary paper on the current status of the ICANN meeting schedule, the ability to adapt or revise the current model while still meeting the needs of the international community, and a time-frame for revising the current model.
  8. Discussed ways to meet the needs of first-time attendees at the international meetings, and the need to continue and improve the briefings presented to first-time attendees. Also discussed need to consider support with the logistics of travel issues, such as visas, to allow for attendance.
    • Action:
      • Staff to prepare a note for the PPC regarding lessons learned and the challenges and opportunities in meeting the needs of first-time attendees at ICANN’s international meetings.
  9. Discussed preparation for the PPC’s telephonic session with the public to obtain input and discuss the implementation of the document deadline prior to the Seoul meeting.
    • Action:
      • Staff to prepare an agenda and discussion paper for the PPC telephonic session with the public, and introducing the decision to keep the meeting focused on the most universal and pressing issue for preparation for the Seoul meeting, the implementation of the document deadline policy.
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."