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Preliminary Report | Special Meeting of the ICANN Board

[Formal Minutes are still to be approved by the ICANN Board]

Note: This has not been approved by the Board and does not constitute minutes but does provide a preliminary attempt setting forth the unapproved reporting of the resolutions from that meeting. Details on voting and abstentions will be provided in the Board's Minutes, when approved by the Board at a future meeting.

NOTE ON ADDITIONAL INFORMATION INCLUDED WITHIN PRELIMINARY REPORT – ON RATIONALES -- Where available, a draft Rationale for each of the Board's actions is presented under the associated Resolution. A draft Rationale is not final until approved with the minutes of the Board meeting.

A Special Meeting of the ICANN Board of Directors was held on 17 November 2013 in Buenos Aires, Argentina, at 15:00 local time.

Steve Crocker, Chair, promptly called the meeting to order.

The following Directors participated in all or part of the meeting: Sébastien Bachollet, Fadi Chehadé (President and CEO), Cherine Chalaby, Bertrand de La Chapelle, Chris Disspain, Bill Graham, Wolfgang Kleinwächter, Erika Mann, Ray Plzak, George Sadowsky, Mike Silber, Bruce Tonkin (Vice Chair), and Kuo-Wei Wu. Olga Madruga-Forti and Gonzalo Navarro sent apologies.

The following Board Liaisons participated in all or part of the meeting: Ram Mohan (SSAC Liaison), Jonne Soininen (IETF Liaison), and Suzanne Woolf (RSSAC Liaison). Francisco da Silva (TLG Liaison) and Heather Dryden (GAC Liaison) sent apologies.

Bruno Lanvin was in attendance as an invited observer.

The following ICANN Staff participated in all or part of the meeting: Akram Atallah (President – Global Domains Division), Susanna Bennett (Chief Operating Officer), John Jeffrey (General Counsel and Secretary), David Olive (Vice President, Policy Development), Michelle Bright, Karine Perset, Amy Stathos, and Theresa Swinehart.

This is a preliminary report of the approved resolutions resulting from the Special Meeting of the ICANN Board of Directors, which took place on 17 November 2013.

  1. Main Agenda
    1. Multi-Stakeholder Internet Governance


  1. Main Agenda:

    1. Multi-Stakeholder Internet Governance

      The Chair introduced the agenda item and the Board engaged in a discussion regarding the details of the proposed resolution.

      The Board took the following action:

      Whereas, on 28 September 2013, the ICANN Board authorized the CEO to, among other things, "work with other key organizations and leaders to establish a coalition towards the formation of a movement or initiative" ("Coalition"), in order to address increasing concerns regarding the effectiveness of a "global, open, multi-stakeholder Internet governance system."

      Whereas, the Board considered that without strengthening a global, coherent approach to Internet governance, ongoing and emerging issues will not be properly addressed in a collective, collaborative way, which may inadvertently affect the operational unity of the Internet, consistent with ICANN's mandate.

      Whereas, on 28 September 2013, the Board further resolved that ". . . should the CEO recommend an additional longer term strategy based on Coalition results, the CEO shall present such a plan of action, including any additional financial resources required, for further consideration by the Board."

      Whereas, the CEO has executed the mandate of the 28 September 2013 Board resolution and has helped facilitate a number of activities, including: (i) the expansion and launch of a previously announced strategy panel now entitled "Panel on the Future of Internet Governance;" (ii) development of and participation in the "1net initiative"; and (iii) encouraging the establishment of and support for a meeting on multi-stakeholder Internet governance that is now likely to take place in Brazil in April 2014.

      Whereas, the CEO regularly reported to the Board as these activities were emerging, to which the Board provided insight, guidance, and support through reports at Board meetings on 23 October 2013, 8 November 2013 and 16 November 2013.

      Whereas, these three initiatives are now commencing, the CEO confirmed a plan for ICANN to continue participating with all other interested participants.

      Whereas, the Board looks forward to the next stages of these initiatives and to the discussion and debate that has been ignited on global multi-stakeholder participation in Internet governance.

      Whereas, ICANN is participating in these initiatives in furtherance of ICANN's mission and anticipates continued participation in these endeavors well into the future.

      Whereas, the Board welcomes the collaboration with I* organizations that led to the Montevideo Statement on the Future of Internet Cooperation. (See

      Whereas, the Board wishes to express its appreciation for the management team accomplishing the objectives of the 28 September 2013 resolution, and the Board finds it admirable that such progress has been made in such a short period of time.

      Resolved (2013.11.17.01), the Board hereby directs the CEO to continue supporting the three emerging and evolving initiatives and recognizes that ICANN, as part of the Internet ecosystem, is just one of the many participants providing resources and support to the following initiatives: (i) the expansion and launch of a previously announced strategy panel now entitled "Panel on the Future of Internet Governance"; (ii) development and participation in the "1net initiative"; and (iii) encouraging the establishment of and support for a meeting on multi-stakeholder Internet governance that is now likely to take place in Brazil in April 2014.

      Resolved (2013.11.17.02), the Board highly encourages all parties interested in the Internet ecosystem and Internet governance to participate in these emerging initiatives and notes the importance of an active and committed participation by all stakeholders.

      All members of the Board that were in attendance voted in favor of Resolutions 2013.11.17.01 and 2013.11.17.02. Two Directors were unavailable to vote. The Resolutions carried.

      Rationale for Resolutions 2013.11.17.01-2013.11.17.02

      This resolution is a continuation of the Board's 28 September 2013 resolution providing ICANN's President and CEO with a mandate to explore how ICANN could coordinate with stakeholders from across the globe to address the pressing issue of the future of Internet governance. In September, the Board directed the President and CEO to work towards the establishment of a coalition to start an effort to form an Internet cooperation agenda, and to do so in a manner consistent with ICANN's mission. That initial work has been completed, and the Board thanks the President and CEO for his leadership in this regard and the rest of the management team for all of their efforts.

      Since the 28 September resolution, a substantial amount of coordination work has been achieved, and the discussions among stakeholders around the world have been ignited. In less than two months, the following initiatives have formed: (i) the expansion and launch of a previously announced panel now entitled "Panel on the Future of Internet Governance;" (ii) development and participation in the 1net initiative; and (iii) encouraging the establishment of and support for a meeting on multi-stakeholder Internet governance that is now likely to take place in Brazil in April 2014.

      To remain accountable to ICANN's mission and community, the Board recognizes that the future of the work of this Coalition and in these initiatives is not ICANN's; while ICANN has important contributions to make to the work of the Coalition, the necessary work now requires all other parties interested in the Internet ecosystem to participate in this work. This Coalition requires multi-stakeholder involvement and support.

      Encouraging further coordination among all Internet stakeholders does not have any immediate impact on the security, stability or resiliency of the DNS, though the outcomes of these initiatives are likely to have positive benefits on the coordination of DNS stability and security issues in the future.

      This is an Organizational Administrative Function for which public comment is not required.

Published on 26 November 2013

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"""" is not an IDN."