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Letter from Tina Dam to Bruce Beckwith

By Postal Mail

Los Angeles, December 10, 2003

Mr Bruce W. Beckwith
Vice President, Operations
Public Interest Registry
1775 Wiehle Avenue, Suite 102A
Reston, VA 20190

Dear Mr. Beckwith,

Thank you for informing ICANN that Public Interest Registry (PIR) has been informed that there is confusion among registrars in regard to collection and submission of required and optional fields, for registrars who are converting from the RRP protocol to the EPP protocol.

Specifically, the EPP protocol documentation (see Section 3.2.1), allows the optional submission of a telephone number for a contact in a domain name registration record. The ICANN contracts, both between ICANN and registrars and between ICANN and PIR, require the submission by registrars of contact telephone numbers.

Please note that the EPP protocol documentation is flexible in order to allow implementation in many policy environments, and does not change the obligations for the Registry Whois. Hence, the telephone number is a required field in the Registry Whois and must be collected and submitted by registrars who currently are going through the RRP-EPP conversion.

In our letter of August 7, 2003, we provided registrars with the option of displaying placeholder data in the telephone and email required fields until Dec 31, 2003. That was in order to allow registrars additional time to collect and submit the correct data.

However, due to the recent implementation of the Whois Data Reminder Policy and due to the apparent confusion among registrars, ICANN will allow PIR and registrars an extension of time where registrars may continue to display temporary placeholder data in the telephone and email fields until October 31, 2004.

This timeline is one year from the compliance date for the Whois Data Reminder Policy, and will afford all registrars sufficient time to have contacted all of their customers and in return to update the PIR database.

In your correspondence to registrars please urge registrars that they should update the domain registration records in the PIR database as early as possible, and not to wait until the end of this extended time period.

Thank you for consulting ICANN concerning these issues. We appreciate your diligence of registrars during this transition, and we are looking forward to the completion of the submission of all of the required data elements.

Please feel free to contact me if you have questions or if I can be of any further assistance.

Best Regards,

Tina Dam
Chief Registry Liaison

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."