ICANN POLICY UPDATE | Volume 11, Issue 10 – October 2011
PDF Version [596 KB]
Special ICANN 42 Dakar Meeting Edition
- A Test of REST for Whois Data
- Staff Tests Public Comment Reply Period for Phase II of Public Comment Process Enhancements
- Issues Currently Open for Public Comment
- Iran joins ccNSO
- Mike Silber Nominated for ICANN Board
- Elections Underway for ccNSO Councilor
- ccNSO Web Site Adds Restricted Wiki Space
- Applications Accepted Soon for ccNSO Travel Funding for San Jose, Costa Rica
- Registration Abuse Practices Discussion Paper; Council Action
- GNSO Improvements: PDP Updated Final Report Submitted
- Whois Studies Continue to Progress
- Final Report on Post-Expiration Domain Name Recovery Ready for Board Action
- Inter-Registrar Transfer Policy Review Continues – Thick Whois added to Council Agenda
- Internationalized Registration Data Working Group Seeks Comment on Draft Final Report
- Review of ICANN Geographic Regions: Draft Final Report Published
- At-Large Community Prepares for Dakar, Welcomes African ALSes to Participate
- ALAC/At-Large Improvements Project Milestone Report Submitted to Structural Improvements Committee
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Policy Supporting Organizations and Advisory Committees
|Address Supporting Organization||ASO|
|Country Code Names Supporting Organization||ccNSO|
|Generic Names Supporting Organization||GNSO|
|At-Large Advisory Committee||ALAC|
|Governmental Advisory Committee||GAC|
|Root Server System Advisory Committee||RSSAC|
|Security and Stability Advisory Committee||SSAC|
At a Glance
Inspired by the Whois-RWS service now in production at the American Registry for Internet Numbers (ARIN), ICANN staff began experimenting with Representational State Transfer-based (REST) web services for domain name registration data. Engineers at the RIPE Network Coordination Centre have tested the service as well.
ICANN, ARIN, and RIPE staff have published an article in the October issue of USENIX ;login to share their findings from this experimentation. The article describes three implementations in sufficient detail to illustrate the benefits of the service and corroborate their findings. Specifically, through these implementations, ICANN, ARIN, and RIPE staff demonstrate that REST-based directory services are able to:
...support internationalized registration data (and, generally, structured and typed data), provide unambiguous signaling, and improve error reporting. We are able to leverage existing client and server infrastructures and provide security services, including transport confidentiality and integrity checking, authentication, and data filtering, in an extensible manner, again with the prospect of being able to leverage implementations and web infrastructure that makes use of security services today.
- "A RESTful Web Service for Internet Name and Address Directory Services" [PDF, 254 KB] October 2011 article
- Executive summary with complementary information by Dave Piscitello
At a Glance
ICANN invites the community to provide feedback on improvements to the Public Comment process.
The Initial Comment Period for "Phase II of Public Comments Process Enhancements" ended on 30 September 2011.
As an initial test of the "Reply Cycle" concept introduced within this solicitation, the comment forum on this topic has been extended for an additional 15 days (15 October). During this "Reply" period, contributors are asked to address only previously posted comments.
Staff hopes to receive community responses to the previously submitted comments in this proceeding. For each reply, Staff asked each contributor to cite the original poster's name, comment date, and any particular text that is pertinent.
At the conclusion of the Reply Cycle, Staff will produce a consolidated report that will incorporate all contributions in both the initial comment and subsequent reply periods.
In this solicitation ideas on technical public comment forum improvements are also incorporated. ICANN staff developed these improvements thinking that a threaded discussion environment will be complementary to the other proposed improvements. If by the end of the full comment period there is enough positive community interest on this issue, Staff plans to perform an additional limited community testing of such an environment during the October-November time period.
Phase I activities to improve ICANN's Public Comment Process were implemented effective 30 June 2011, in response to recommendations #15, 16, 17 and 21 of the Accountability and Transparency Review Team (ATRT). In that first phase, staff completely redesigned web pages, added new navigation menus, streamlined Announcement and Public Comment Box formats, and introduced an "Upcoming Topics" feature. New standardized data fields were added across all solicitations (e.g., Originating Organization, Purpose, Current Status, Next Steps) and opening and closing dates and times were clarified. To support these improvements staff also created internal document templates to facilitate publication and ensure presentation consistency in these pages.
After the launch of the redesigned Public Comment web pages in June, the staff worked with a focus group of ICANN community volunteers identified by ICANN community leaders, to gather initial feedback on further improvements.
These further improvements are now available for wider community review and feedback though a public comment period as mentioned above until 15 October. The public comment includes a staff report where focus group feedback is referenced and linked for each relevant topic. The overall effort supports the implementation of the ATRT recommendations relating to how community members provide input on ICANN matters.
- To view comments previously submitted and to submit a reply, please see the Public Comment Box
- Reply Period announcement
- Original announcement
Filiz Yilmaz, Senior Director, Participation and Engagement
Numerous public comment periods are currently open on issues of interest to the ICANN community. Act now to share your views on such topics as:
- Phase II of Public Comments Process Enhancements. Community feedback is requested concerning three of the Accountability and Transparency Review Team recommendations that affect the way ICANN publishes and manages Public Comments. Now in Reply Period. Closes 15 October 2011. See article above.
- Variant Issues Project – Case Study Team Issues Reports. Case studies have been conducted for six individual scripts to investigate issues that need to be resolved to facilitate a good user experience for IDN variant TLDs. Closes 14 November 2011. Case Study Team Issues Reports:
- Community Input on Draft 2012-2015 Strategic Plan. In preparation for the next round of strategic planning, ICANN leadership is looking for input into this year’s amendment to the Strategic Plan. Closes 17 November 2011.
- Draft Final Report of the Internationalized Registration Data Working Group. The Working Group has published its draft Final Report on how to deal with registration data in a broad range of languages and scripts, and seeks comments from the public. Closes 17 November 2011.
- Geographic Regions Review – Draft Final Report. Outlines specific recommendations regarding how the present Geographic Regions Framework can be modified to ensure that organizational principles of geographic and cultural diversity are honored and maintained. Closes 19 December 2011.
For the full list of issues open for public comment, plus recently closed and archived public comment forums, visit the Public Comment web page.
At a Glance
A country code operator from the Middle East region was approved as a new ccNSO member in October 2011.
The ccNSO Council approved the ccTLD operator of .ir (Iran) as a new ccNSO member. Iran is in the Middle East, bordering the Gulf of Oman, Persian Gulf and the Caspian Sea.
There are now a total of 120 ccNSO members.
Gabriella Schittek, ccNSO Secretariat
At a Glance
The nomination period for ICANN Board Seat 12 has ended, resulting in one nomination.
The ccNSO nomination period for Seat 12 on the ICANN Board closed on 6 October 2011. Only one candidate was nominated and seconded: Mr. Mike Silber, the currently seated Board member.
Mr. Silber will be invited to join a question and answer session at the ccNSO session in Dakar, where he will respond to questions from the ccTLD community and will have the opportunity to explain his goals and missions. It is then expected that the ccNSO Council will confirm his nomination to the Board.
ICANN Board Seat 12 is up for renewal in June 2012. According to the ccNSO guidelines, the nomination/election process is to start mid-September. In June 2012, Mr. Silber will have served one term of three years on the ICANN Board and he is be eligible for re-election.
- Call for nominations for a Director to the ICANN Board
- Election Procedure to Elect an ICANN Board Director
- ccNSO Board nominations/elections guidelines [PDF, 85 KB]
Staff ContactGabriella Schittek, ccNSO Secretariat
At a Glance
Elections are being held in October in the African Region for one ccNSO Councilor.
The ccNSO nomination period ended on 16 September. The African region had two candidates, Mr. Mohamed Ibrahim, .so (Somalia) and Mr. Vika Mpisane, .za (South Africa), necessitating an election in this region.
The elections run from 7 October to 21 October 2011.
Nominations (and elections, if necessary) to the ccNSO Council are held once every year. The elected Councilor will take the seat after the ICANN Public Meeting in San Jose, Costa Rica in March 2012.
- ccNSO Council Elections Guidelines [PDF, 86 KB]
Gabriella Schittek, ccNSO Secretariat
At a Glance
A closed, or password-protected, wiki space will be added to the ccNSO web site.
In response to requests for a space to share information within the ccTLD community, staff is adding a password-protected Confluence wiki space to be accessed through the ccNSO web site.
All qualifying parties will be invited to subscribe to receive a password for the new closed wiki space. A definition of who qualifies will be posted on the ccNSO web site.
A workshop on how to use the Confluence wiki will be held during the ICANN Public Meeting in Dakar and will be repeated on a regular basis.
Feedback will be sought from the users of the new space two months after its launch.
The closed section will undergo a trial period of six months. The idea will be revisited six months after the launch of the closed space, and the Council will then, based on community feedback, consider whether the closed space should continue or whether it should be discarded.
In developing the new ccNSO web site, interviews with ccTLD representatives were conducted in order to find out what the community is expecting from the new pages.
Several respondents mentioned that it would be desirable to have a closed section of the web site, where information could be shared without making it available outside the ccTLD arena. In addition, the ccNSO Council had also expressed its wish to implement a message board tool, allowing for discussions outside email lists.
Based on this feedback, the ccNSO Secretariat researched various options for creating a closed space. Ultimately ICANN’s Confluence wiki tool was chosen, as it supports all current requirements and could be implemented easily.
Offering a closed section on the ccNSO web site is a way to give the ccTLD community an additional platform where it can share information with fellow colleagues without making it publicly available.
The closed space will be open to ccNSO members as well as all ccTLD community members. A definition of community members will be posted on the ccNSO web site.
Gabriella Schittek, ccNSO Secretariat
At a Glance
ccNSO community members will soon be able to apply for travel funding to attend the ICANN Public Meeting in Costa Rica.
The call for applications will open on 31 October for the ccNSO travel funding program to the ICANN Public Meeting to be held in San Jose, Costa Rica from 11-16 March 2012.
Applications are welcome until 18 November 2011 12.00 noon UTC.
The ccNSO travel funding is made available for those who actively contribute to the work of the ccNSO - in particular to its projects and meetings.
Gabriella Schittek, ccNSO Secretariat
At a Glance
Registries and registrars lack uniformity when dealing with domain name registration abuse, and questions persist about what activities constitute "registration abuse." The GNSO Council launched the Registration Abuse Policies Working Group (RAP WG) to examine registration abuse policies. After reviewing the RAP WG's proposed approach, the GNSO Council is moving ahead with several RAP WG recommendations, including a request for a discussion paper on best practices to address registration abuse.
Best Practices Discussion Paper: Building on input received at the workshop at ICANN's Public Meeting in Singapore, ICANN staff has now finalized the discussion paper on the creation of non-binding best practices to help registrars and registries address the abusive registration of domain names [PDF, 653 KB] and submitted it to the GNSO Council for its consideration. A workshop on the topic will be held during the ICANN Public Meeting in Dakar on Wednesday, 26 October. The discussion paper addresses issues such as:
- What makes a practice a best practice
- Identification and/or creation of best practice
- Defining the non-binding nature of best practices
- What should be ICANN’s role
- Resources and process
- Maintenance, review, promotion and dissemination of best practices
- Cost, benefit, funding, incentives
In addition, the paper includes a preliminary inventory of current or proposed best practices and outlines a number of proposed next steps for the GNSO Council to consider including the creation of a GNSO Working Group to establish the framework for best practices and the creation of a Cross-Community Technical Group to propose candidate best practices to address the abusive registration of domain names.
Remaining RAP Recommendations: At its meeting on 6 October, the GNSO Council adopted a motion addressing the remaining recommendations of the RAP WG (see below for further details). Among others, the GNSO Council resolved to:
- Request the Whois Survey Drafting Team to consider including the issue of Whois Access as part of the survey it has been tasked to develop.
- Request the ICANN Compliance Department to report on existing systems to report and track violations and/or complaints; improvements / changes made since the RAPWG Report or foreseen in the near future, and: identify gaps and any improvements that might be desirable but not foreseen at this stage
- Request an Issue Report to evaluate whether a minimum baseline of registration abuse provisions should be created for all in scope ICANN agreements, and if created, how such language would be structured to address the most common forms of registration abuse
The GNSO Council is expected to consider the discussion paper in further detail at its meeting in Dakar.
The RAP WG presented its final report [PDF, 1.7 MB] and recommendations to the GNSO Council in June 2010. The Council then formed a group of volunteers, the Registration Abuse Policies Implementation Drafting Team (RAP DT), to draft a proposed approach to implementing the report's recommendations. The RAP DT developed a matrix categorizing the RAP WG final report [PDF, 1.7 MB] recommendations in order of priority, expected complexity and required resources and submitted a letter [PDF, 184 KB] to the GNSO Council outlining a recommended approach for its consideration. See the web site for further information.
A short history of the RAP WG is available on ICANN's web site.
- Discussion paper on the creation of non-binding best practices to help registrars and registries address the abusive registration of domain names [PDF, 653 KB]
- Registration Abuse Policies WG Final Report [PDF, 1.7 MB]
- Registration Abuse Policies Issues Report, 29 October 2008 [PDF, 400 KB] and translation of summary
- Registration Abuse Policies WG Workspace (wiki)
- RAP Implementation Drafting Team Letter to the GNSO Council [PDF, 184 KB]
At a Glance
Members of the GNSO community are working to implement a comprehensive series of structural and operational changes designed to improve the effectiveness and accessibility of the organization. The effort is reaching an end and below is information on the most recent developments.
As requested by the GNSO Council, the Policy Development Process Work Team (PDP-WT) reviewed the public comments received regarding its Final Report. Accordingly, the PDP-WT has revised its report and submitted the Updated Final Report to the GNSO Council for its consideration on 28 September. In addition to the report, a motion to adopt the report and its recommendations was submitted to the GNSO Council for consideration. The GNSO Council is expected to consider the report and its recommendations at its meeting in Dakar. Following approval by the GNSO Council, the ICANN Board will need to consider the new proposed PDP for adoption.
The Updated Final Report contains 48 recommendations, an outline of the proposed new Annex A to the ICANN Bylaws and a supporting document that is envisioned to be included in the GNSO Council Operating Procedures as the PDP Manual.
The most substantial of the recommendations include:
- Recommending the use of a standardized Request for an Issue Report Template;
- The introduction of a Preliminary Issues Report which shall be published for public comment prior to the creation of a Final Issues Report to be acted upon by the GNSO Council;
- A requirement that each PDP Working Group operate under a Charter;
- Changing the existing Bylaws so that upon initiation of a PDP, public comment periods are optional rather than mandatory, at the discretion of the PDP Working Group;
- Changing the timeframes of public comment periods including (i) a required public comment period of no less than 30 days on a PDP Working Group's Initial Report and (ii) a minimum of 21 days for any non-required public comment periods the PDP WG might choose to initiate at its discretion;
- Maintaining the existing requirement of PDP WG producing both an Initial Report and Final Report, but giving the WG discretion to produce additional outputs;
- A recommendation allowing for the termination of a PDP prior to delivery of the Final Report;
- New procedures on the delivery of recommendations to the Board including a requirement that all are reviewed by either the PDP Working Group or the GNSO Council and made publicly available; and
- The use of Implementation Review Teams.
Further details and background on the different recommendations, the proposed Annex A and PDP Manual can be found in the Updated Final Report [PDF, 1.51 MB] as well as in the overview of the differences between the Final Report and the Updated Final Report [PDF, 340 KB].
- GNSO Improvements Information Web Page (which provides links to new procedures and processes as well as to the organizational charters of the various GNSO entities)
- GNSO Home Page (which provides links and information regarding GNSO Council operations and processes and the status and background documents for various ongoing Council initiatives)
- PDP Work Team wiki
- Working Group Work Team wiki
- Constituency Operations Work Team wiki
- Commercial SG Charter [PDF, 307 KB]
- Non-Commercial SG Charter [PDF, 182 KB]
- New GNSO Constituency Recognition Process
Robert Hoggarth, Senior Policy Director
At a Glance
"Whois” is the data repository containing registered domain names, registrant contacts and other critical information. The GNSO Council is proceeding with studies to provide current, reliable information for community discussions about Whois.
Whois Misuse Study. This study is intended to discover to what extent public Whois information is used maliciously. The Carnegie Mellon University Cylab in Pittsburgh, PA, USA expects to have initial results from the study in late 2012.
Whois Registrant Identification Study. This study will examine the extent to which domain names registered by legal persons or for commercial activities are not clearly represented in Whois data. On 28 September, staff announced that NORC at the University of Chicago was selected to conduct this study.
Whois Proxy and Privacy Services Abuse Study. Staff is finalizing details of this study, slated to begin later this year. It will focus on the extent to which domain names used to conduct illegal or harmful Internet activities are registered via privacy or proxy services to obscure the perpetrator’s identity.
Whois Proxy and Privacy Services Reveal Study. A feasibility study started in July 2011 will determine whether enough willing participants can be found to conduct a larger study measuring proxy and privacy service responsiveness to registrant "identity reveal" requests. Expect to see initial findings later this year.
Whois Service Requirements Study - Volunteers Needed. On 6 October the GNSO Council approved a charter for a new Working Group to survey community members to estimate the level of agreement with the conclusions and assumptions in the Inventory of Whois Service Requirements – Final Report [PDF, 636 KB]). A draft survey is due to be provided to the GNSO Council by March 2012, with a survey launch thereafter, and a final report targeted for completion by October 2012. Community volunteers, especially those with technical expertise in the technical aspects of gTLD Whois, survey development, and background on the history of gTLD Whois policy development, are invited to participate in this group by contacting the GNSO Secretariat.
- GNSO Whois policy development page
- Background on Whois Studies
- Inventory of Whois Service Requirements – Final Report [PDF, 636 KB]
- 28 April Resolution on Whois Studies
- 6 October GNSO Council Resolution approving the Charter for a Whois Service Requirements Survey Working Group
Staff ContactLiz Gasster, Senior Policy Counselor
At a Glance
The ICANN community provided comments, which have been summarized and analyzed, on a report and recommendations related to what happens after domain names expire. The GNSO Council adopted the report in July, concluding a two-year process that examined current registrar policies regarding the renewal, transfer and deletion of expired domain names.
The Final Report and Recommendations made by the Post-Expiration Domain Name Recovery Working Group is now ready for ICANN Board consideration. The GNSO Council approved the document in July. A public comment period was open from 15 August to 15 September 2011 to request community input on the recommendations. A Staff summary and analysis [PDF, 15 KB] of the community comments received is now complete. Among the recommendations that will now be considered by the Board are:
- Providing a minimum of eight days after expiration for renewal by a registrant;
- Having unsponsored gTLDs and registrars offer Redemption Grace Periods;
- Requiring posting of fees charged for renewal; requiring that at least two notices prior to expiration are sent at set times, one after expiration; that an expired web site must explicitly say that registration has expired, and offer instructions on how to redeem the domain; and
- Developing educational materials about how to prevent unintentional loss.
The ICANN Board is expected to consider the Final Report recommendations at its meeting in Dakar. If the ICANN Board adopts the recommendations, the GNSO Council will convene an Implementation Review Team to work with staff on developing an implementation plan.
For a history of the ICANN community's policy development activities on this topic, please refer to the PEDNR background page.
- PEDNR Proposed Final Report [PDF, 971 KB]
- Details on PEDNR Public Consultation Session in Brussels
- GNSO Issues Report on Post-Expiration Domain Name Recovery [PDF, 416 KB]
- Translations of the GNSO Issues Report on Post-Expiration Domain Name Recovery
Marika Konings, Senior Policy Director
At a Glance
The aim of the Inter-Registrar Transfer Policy (IRTP) is to provide a straightforward procedure for domain name holders to transfer their names from one ICANN-accredited registrar to another. The GNSO Council is reviewing and considering revisions to this policy through a series of Working Groups it has established to conduct these efforts. The IRTP Part B PDP Recommendations have been adopted by the ICANN Board and will now move forward to implementation. The IRTP Part C Policy Development Process has just begun and volunteers are being asked to sign up for the Working Group.
Recent Developments and Next Steps
IRTP Part B: Following the GNSO Council’s adoption of the IRTP Part B PDP Recommendations and a public comment period, the ICANN Board adopted the recommendations at its August meeting (read more in the August 2011 Policy Update article). ICANN Staff has started working on the implementation and is expected to provide a status update at the ICANN Public Meeting in Dakar.
IRTP Part C: Following the submission of the Final Issue Report IRTP Part C [625 KB] to the GNSO Council, the GNSO Council decided to initiate a Policy Development Process and adopted a Charter for a Working Group at its meeting in September. IRTP Part C will address the following three issues:
- "Change of Control" function, including an investigation of how this function is currently achieved, if there are any applicable models in the country-code name space that can be used as a best practice for the gTLD space, and any associated security concerns. It should also include a review of locking procedures, as described in Reasons for Denial #8 and #9, with an aim to balance legitimate transfer activity and security.
- Whether provisions on time-limiting Forms Of Authorization (FOAs) should be implemented to avoid fraudulent transfers out. For example, if a Gaining Registrar sends and receives an FOA back from a transfer contact, but the name is locked, the registrar may hold the FOA pending adjustment to the domain name status, during which time the registrant or other registration information may have changed.
- Whether the process can be streamlined by a requirement that registries use IANA IDs for registrars rather than proprietary IDs.
‘Thick’ Whois Issue Report: As recommended by the IRTP Part B Working Group, the GNSO Council resolved at its meeting in September to request ICANN staff to prepare an Issue Report on the requirement of ‘thick’ Whois for all incumbent gTLDs. Such an Issue Report and possible subsequent Policy Development Process should not only consider a possible requirement of 'thick' WHOIS or all incumbent gTLDs in the context of IRTP, but should also consider any other positive and/or negative effects that are likely to occur outside of IRTP that would need to be taken into account when deciding whether a requirement of thick Whois for all incumbent gTLDs would be desirable or not.
The IRTP is a GNSO consensus policy that was adopted in 2004 with the objective to provide registrants with a transparent and predictable way to transfer domain name registrations between registrars. As part of its implementation, it was decided to carry out a review of the policy in order to determine whether it was working as intended or whether there are any areas that would benefit from further clarification or improvement As a result of this review, a number of issues were identified that were grouped together in five different policy development processes or PDPs titled A to E which are being addressed in a consecutive manner.
IRTP Part C:
- Final Issue Report IRTP Part C [PDF, 625 KB]
IRTP Part B:
- IRTP Part B Final Report [PDF, 972 KB]
- IRTP Part B Proposed Final Report [PDF, 733 KB]
- IRTP Part B Issues Report [PDF, 256 KB]
- ICANN Start podcast: audio explanation of IRTP Part B [MP3, 18 MB]
Marika Konings, Senior Policy Director
At a Glance
Now that IANA has allocated all the addresses in IPv4, Regional Internet Registries (RIRs) have discussed a number of proposed global policies for handling IPv4 address space returned from the RIRs to IANA. The RIRs are getting closer to adoption of a new policy.
After failing to reach consensus on two preceding proposals, a third proposal on allocation of recovered IPv4 address space has been launched and introduced in the five RIRs. APNIC, the registry that originated the proposal, has adopted it, and so has LACNIC. The proposal has passed the final call stage in both AfriNIC and RIPE, and is still in the discussion stage in ARIN.
In this proposal, IANA would establish and administer a pool of returned address space to be allocated to all RIRs simultaneously in equal blocks of smaller size than the traditional /8. Pool size permitting, allocations would occur every six months.
If and when this policy proposal is adopted by all five RIRs, the Number Resource Organization Executive Committee and the Address Supporting Organization Address Council will review the proposal and forward the policy to the ICANN Board for ratification and implementation by IANA.
IPv4 is the Internet Protocol addressing system used to allocate unique IP address numbers in 32-bit format. With the massive growth of the Internet user population, the pool of unique numbers (approximately 4.3 billion) has been depleted and a 128-bit numbering system (IPv6) is taking its place.
- A Background Report for the third proposal is posted on the ICANN web site and includes a comparison between the proposals so far on this theme.
- Background Report for the second proposal.
Staff ContactOlof Nordling, Director, Service Relations
At a Glance
The Internationalized Registration Data Working Group (IRD-WG) has published its draft Final Report on how to deal with registration data in a broad range of languages and scripts and seeks comments from the public.
This final Draft Report is the IRD-WG’s response to the ICANN Board request regarding the feasibility and suitability of introduction display specifications to deal with the internationalized registration data.
The IRD-WG interpreted the Board's request as two broad issues of suitability and feasibility, and related questions.
- Is it suitable (or desirable) to internationalize Domain Name Registration Data?
- If so, what data element is suitable to be internationalized?
- Is it suitable to introduce submission and display specifications to deal with the internationalization of Registration Data?
- Is the current Whois system capable of handling the query and display of internationalized Domain Name Registration Data?
- Is it feasible to introduce submission and display specifications to deal with internationalized Domain Name Registration Data?
In the draft Final Report, the IRD-WG discusses terminology, background on Domain Name Registration Data, data elements, the Whois protocol, and current practices by gTLD and ccTLD registries and registrars. In addition, the IRD-WG finds that it is feasible to introduce submission and display specifications to deal with internationalized Domain Name Registration Data. It recommends a series of next steps that could be undertaken to address further the technical and policy issues identified in the report, including a recommendation that the GNSO Council request an Issue Report on the policy questions raised by the working group. That Issue Report would consider whether it is desirable to translate contact information to a single common language or transliterate contact information to a single common script, and who should bear the burden and would be in the best position to address these issues.
On 26 June 2009, ICANN’s Board approved a resolution requesting that the GNSO and the SSAC, in consultation with staff, convene an Internationalized Registration Data Working Group comprised of individuals with knowledge, expertise, and experience in these areas to study the feasibility and suitability of introducing display specifications to deal with the internationalization of registration data. Without such specifications, domain registrants worldwide would enter Whois data in languages of their own choice. The result could turn Whois data into a wide variety of different scripts, and many individual users would not be able to read or understand most Whois query results. Display standards could bring helpful uniformity.
In November 2010 the IRD-WG produced an Interim Report [PDF, 686 KB] requesting community input on several questions relating to possible models for internationalizing Domain Name Registration Data.
The IRD-WG will hold a public session at the ICANN meeting in Dakar, Senegal on 27 October from 10:00-11:00 local time to discuss the report and gather community comments.
Julie Hedlund, Director, SSAC Support
At a Glance
For the past two years a community-wide working group chartered by the ICANN Board has been working to: (1) confirm the history, underlying principles and goals of the current geographic regions framework, (2) analyze how those goals and principles have been applied by the Board, Staff and community and (3) consult with the community on how those principles and goals can be best maintained in the future. That working group is now reaching the end of its efforts.
The Geographic Regions Review Working Group’s Draft Final Report reflects the penultimate step of the group’s research and consultation effort. The draft document outlines specific recommendations from the Working Group to the ICANN Board regarding how the present Geographic Regions Framework can be modified to ensure that the organizational principles of geographic and cultural diversity are honored and maintained. Those recommendations are based on thorough research, extensive community consultation and reflect the points of view of a wide range of the ICANN community.
Mindful of the potential implications even small changes to the framework could have on the wider community, the WG published its Draft Final report on 1 October, asking the community for review and comments on its draft recommendations. The Public Comment Forum will be open through 19 December 2011. The WG will closely review all submitted comments to determine if further modifications to the draft document are necessary.
Geographic diversity is a fundamental component of the ICANN organization. The ICANN Bylaws (Article VI Section 5) currently define five geographic regions as Africa, North America, Latin America/Caribbean, Asia/Australia/Pacific and Europe.
The ICANN Geographic Regions were originally created to ensure regional diversity in the composition of the ICANN Board and were subsequently expanded in various ways to apply to the GNSO, ALAC and the ccNSO.
The Working Group will host a public workshop during the ICANN Public Meeting in Dakar to explain and discuss its recommendations with interested community members.
After the close of the Public Comment Forum on 19 December 2011, WG members will closely review all comments submitted and will determine whether to modify the recommendations in the Final Report. The WG expects to formally publish its Final Report early next year. At that time the various ICANN Supporting Organizations and Advisory Committees will be asked to formally comment on the recommendations in the Final Report before the ICANN Board’s consideration.
- ICANN Board Resolution authorizing the Working Group
- Geographic Regions WG Charter
- Working Group wiki page
- Initial Report published in July 2009
- Interim Report published in November 2010
- Announcement of Draft Final Report availability
- Draft Final Report Public Comment Forum – open through 19 December 2011
Robert Hoggarth, Senior Policy Director
At a Glance
At-Large community representatives from around the world are preparing for a variety of meetings and events scheduled to take place during ICANN’s Public Meeting in Dakar, Senegal. More than 20 representatives from each of the African At-Large Structures are expected to attend the AFRALO Dakar Events, which include a capacity building program, showcase, general assembly and an AFRALO/AfriCANN meeting.
The AFRALO Dakar Events meetings, made possible in part through the agreement of several Regional At-Large Organizations to pool their FY12 meeting support for General Assemblies, has been two years in the planning. The scheduled events include:
- An AFRALO Capacity Building Program - A week-long series of capacity building sessions for African At-Large Structure representatives;
- An AFRALO Showcase – featuring two African Ministers as keynote speakers;
- An AFRALO General Assembly – an opportunity for AFRALO to discuss issues of fundamental importance to their Regional At-Large Organization; and
- An AFRALO/AfrICANN Meeting – a gathering of all the ICANN African community to discuss an issue of key importance to the region.
A highlight of this event is a series of Capacity Building sessions whose main objective is to build capacity and raise awareness of ICANN policies, organization and activities to increase the effectiveness of the participation of the African end-user representatives in ICANN’s policy development process. Over five days, the program aims to provide representatives of AFRALO At-Large Structures with briefings on the key policies, issues, activities and structure of ICANN. These briefings will be conducted by ICANN officers and staff, and allow for open discussion.
At-Large Meetings scheduled for Dakar include:
- ALAC and Regional Leadership Working Sessions
- At-Large Meeting with the GAC
- An At-Large Meeting with the ICANN Board
- Two Policy Discussion Sessions
- An ALAC Meeting with ICANN Compliance Staff
- An ALAC Meeting with the NCSG
- A NARALO Monthly Meeting
- NARALO Task Force on Puerto Rico's ccTLD Controversy
- A meeting to discuss NARALO's North American Internet Users' Survey
- A LACRALO Monthly Meeting
- An APRALO Monthly Meeting
- An At-Large Regional Secretariats Meeting
- An At-Large Lunch Meeting with the ICANN Board
- An ALAC and Regional Leadership Wrap-Up Meeting
- An ALAC Executive Committee Meeting
In addition, the At-Large community members will also participate actively in many of the other meetings taking place that week either in person or using remote participation tools.
- The schedule of At-Large Meetings during ICANN’s Public Meeting in Dakar, including agendas in English, French and Spanish and remote participation instructions has been posted. Check back frequently for updates.
- AFRALO Dakar Event programs
Heidi Ullrich, Director for At-Large
18. ALAC/At-Large Improvements Project Milestone Report Submitted to Structural Improvements Committee
At a Glance
The At-Large staff has submitted the next status report on the ALAC/At-Large Improvements Project to the Structural Improvements Committee (SIC). This report describes the significant work of the At-Large Improvements Work Teams in developing a series of proposals aimed at completing the implementation of the ALAC Review recommendations.
The four At-Large Improvements Working Teams (WTs), the ALAC and At-Large staff have completed the next status report on the ALAC/At-Large Improvements Project. This is the extensive ALAC/At-Large Improvements Project Milestone Report [PDF, 532 KB], submitted to ICANN’s Structural Improvements Committee and Board on 11 October.
The report describes the substantial amount of work done thus far within the ALAC/At-Large Improvements Project. In particular, it outlines the recently completed set of proposals being used by the ALAC to conclude its ongoing implementation of the project’s improvements (defined by the 2009 Final Report of the ALAC Review Working Group on ALAC Improvements [PDF, 270 KB]).
These implementation proposals were developed by the four At-Large Improvements Working Teams (WTs). Since September 2010, each WT has focused on a specific area within the Improvements Project including:
- The ALAC’s continuing purpose within ICANN (WT A);
- Increasing participation by the At-Large Structures (ALSes) in all regions (WT B);
- Improving ALAC/At-Large strategic, operational and financial planning processes (WT C); and
- Improving the ALAC’s policy advice processes (WT D).
Among the next steps in the At-Large Improvements Project, the ALAC plans to discuss the implementation of the remaining ALAC Review recommendations, as well as the WT proposals targeting them, in Dakar.
Seth Greene, Consultant for At-Large
At a Glance
The SSAC published two recent reports: one on Whois terminology and structure, and the second on its quarterly activities.
The SSAC report on Whois is entitled [SAC051]: SSAC Report on Whois Terminology and Structure (19 September 2011) [PDF, 237 KB]. SAC051 proposes a taxonomy that disambiguates terminology that has been used in discussions related to domain name registration data. SSAC also identifies features that should be considered in future domain name registration data directory services. A section of the report summarizes four key observations related to the stalled progress on Whois thus far, and another offers recommendations for how to move the conversation forward to fulfill the commitment stated above.
The second report is the quarterly update on SSAC activities: SSAC Activity Report, September 2011 [PDF, 115 KB]. This report is divided into two sections: Work Plan for 2011 and Work Completed in 2011. The first section, Work Plan for 2011, presents the ideas and preliminary work to develop specific project plans. The second section, Work Completed in 2011, briefly describes the publications that have been produced in 2011. The SSAC has published five documents in 2011 that include Advisories, Reports, and Comments.
- [SAC051]: SSAC Report on Whois Terminology and Structure (19 September 2011) [PDF, 237 KB]
- SSAC Activity Report, September 2011 [PDF, 115 KB]
Staff ContactJulie Hedlund, Director, SSAC Support
At a Glance
SSAC members discussed complex security issues during in-depth and in-person meetings at the September 2011 Annual Retreat.
During the retreat, the SSAC developed its annual work plan, discussed new security issues that may need to be addressed, and reviewed the status of ongoing actions. The outcomes from the 2011 retreat include consideration of security and stability issues relating to the following topics: Whois, Non-US-Centric DNS Filtering, Dotless Domains, Public interest (No Fee) Domain Holding Pen, New gTLDs, and IPv4 to IPv6 Transition.
Work Parties established by the SSAC will consider whether the topics listed above warrant the development of a report, advisory, or comment.
Julie Hedlund, Director, SSAC Support
update-oct11-en.pdf [585 KB]