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ICANN Newsletter | Week ending 12 December 2008

News from the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers

Announcements This Week

Cairo Fellowship Program Achieves Successful Conclusion

10 December 2008 | 26 Fellowship participants attended the 33rd ICANN International Public Meeting held in Cairo this past November. 30 candidates were chosen from a pool of 89 applications. 9 of the participating fellows were alumni of a previous fellowship program, 9 were first-time fellows who had attended at least 1 ICANN meeting previously, and 8 were first-time ICANN meeting attendees.

ICANN to Convene Consultations on Registry/Registrar Report

9 December 2008 | On 24 October 2008, ICANN posted the CRA International report titled, "Revisiting Vertical Separation of Registries and Registrars" [PDF, 493 KB]. This paper has generated significant discussion in the community as it discusses the potential easing of the requirement for the separation of gTLD registries and registrars.

Public Comment: Bylaws Revisions re: Committees

9 December 2008 | At its 7 November 2008 Board meeting in Cairo the ICANN Board determined that in the best interests of ICANN, the Conflicts of Interest Committee and the Reconsideration Committee should be dissolved and the responsibilities of those committees should be transferred to the Board Governance Committee. Comments on the proposed bylaws revisions and changes to committees will be considered until 8 January 2009.

Public Comment Period on Registries/Registrars Report Extended

8 December 2008 | The public comment period on a report by CRA International on gTLD registries and registrars has been extended by one week to 15 December 2008.

Upcoming Events

1 - 6 March 2009: 34rd International Public ICANN Meeting - Mexico City, Mexico


ICANN Bylaws

Our bylaws are very important to us. They capture our mission of security, stability and accessibility, and compel the organization to be open and transparent. Learn more at

Strategic Plan, July 2007 - June 2010

Adopted FY09 Operating Plan and Budget [PDF, 489 KB]

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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."