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Secretary's Notice | Request for Information to Registry Operators of .BIZ, .INFO and .ORG and proposed Registry Operator of .ASIA

Re: Registry Operator Agreements considered by the ICANN Board on 25 September 2006

During the last two ICANN Board Meetings on 9 September and 25 September 2006, the ICANN Board of Directors discussed the proposed agreements and the public comments raised in response to the posting of the .BIZ, .INFO, .ORG and .ASIA agreements from the recent public comment period.

9 September 2006 Board Meeting –

On 9 September 2006, ICANN staff provided a summary to the board of the public comments received and there was a discussion of the proposed agreement changes regarding both the additional pricing limitation term, and the proposed changes relating to DNSSec. The Board requested that staff publicly post the summary of the public comments to ensure that those making the comments were comfortable with the summary of those comments. The summary of the comments was posted at http://www.icann.org/announcements/comments-summary-07sep06.htm. The actual comments for .BIZ, .INFO and .ORG were posted at http://www.icann.org/announcements/announcement-2-28jul06.htm. The actual comments for .ASIA were posted at http://www.icann.org/announcements/announcement-28jul06.htm.

There was an emphasis in the Board discussion on comments received regarding the requests for pricing limitations, renewal terms and requests to delay the decision until the results of the pdp-feb06 were completed. No decisions were made by the Board on these issues during the 9 September Meeting. The Board agreed to consider these agreements again during its next board meeting.

25 September 2006 Board Meeting –

An additional special board meeting was added to the Board's Calendar for 25 September, and the Board met a second time during that month. Other urgent board business took up a majority of the time on the call. During the later portions of the Board Meeting, Staff and Board again discussed the public comments including 1) the comments regarding the delay of the registry agreements until the pdp-feb06 is completed, and 2) comments regarding requests for limitations on price increases during renewal, as opposed to differential pricing for individual registrations. After some Board level discussion on these points, various board members expressed concerns about whether the issues raised in the public comments had been appropriately responded to by the registries.

Board's Request for Additional Information –

There was a "sense of the board" that additional information was required for the Board to fully consider the agreements, and they Board specifically expressed a desire to see communications from each of the registries responding to the public comments that had been received during the public comment period. The Board agreed that if they received the responses before October 10th, that they would discuss the pending agreements again during their next scheduled board meeting on 18 October 2006.

In my role as Board Secretary, I was asked to communicate the Board's request for your responses to the recent round of public comments. Please provide such responses by 10 October 2006 at 2PM PDT California to ensure that these materials are provided to the Board in time for the Board to discuss these agreements. If you have any questions, please contact me.

Best Regards,

John Jeffrey

General Counsel & Secretary

ICANN

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."