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Background on Post-Expiration Domain Name Recovery (PEDNR)

During the ICANN meeting in Cairo, the ALAC voted to request an Issues Report on the subject of registrants being able to recover domain names after their formal expiration date. The ALAC request was submitted to the GNSO Council on 20 November 2008. ICANN Staff prepared the Issues Report on post-expiration domain name recovery and submitted it to the GNSO Council on 5 December 2008. ICANN Staff provided the GNSO Council with clarifications on the questions raised in a motion that was adopted at its 18 December meeting. The GNSO Council reviewed these clarifications during its meeting on 29 January and agreed to create a Post-Expiration Domain Name Recovery drafting team to eventually propose a charter and to provide recommendations answering certain questions.

The GNSO Council adopted a charter for a Post-Expiration Domain Name Recovery Working Group (PEDNR WG) at its meeting on 24 June in Sydney.

Following the adoption of the charter, a call for volunteers was launched (PDF, 93K). In addition, a PEDNR workshop was held at the ICANN meeting in Sydney, enabling a first exchange of views with the broader ICANN community on the issues outlined in the charter above. A transcript and audio recording of the workshop is available online.

The Post-Expiration Domain Name Recovery Working Group (PEDNR-WG) has been meeting weekly. The Group developed a registrar survey, intended to provide additional information that can inform the deliberations of the Working Group. In addition, the Working Group has started the review of the comments received during the public comment period, which was launched to solicit views on the questions outlined in the PEDNR WG Charter.

The Working Group held a workshop at the ICANN meeting in Seoul, at which it provided an overview of the discussions to date. The group also presented its findings in relation to contractual provisions, as well as registrar practices in relation to post-expiration. Furthermore, ICANN Staff provided an overview of the initial results of the registrar survey.

After presenting initial results of the registrar survey, ICANN Staff finalized the results [PDF , 948 KB] and presented them to the Post-Expiration Domain Name Recovery Working Group on 5 January 2010. The survey reviewed current registrar practices regarding domain name expiration, renewal, and post-expiration recovery and found substantial differences in approach among registrars.

In March 2010, the PEDNR WG initiated a survey amongst its own members to assess their views on the various charter questions and survey results. The survey should help the group determine where there is common ground and where there is further work to be done.

The PEDNR PDP WG published its Initial Report on 31 May 2010 – (see the related community Public Comment Forum). In addition, a survey asked several specific questions about renewal and expiration practices. Nine comments were submitted, including comments from representatives of the Registrars and Registries Groups, ALAC, and the Commercial and Business Users Constituencies. More than 400 survey responses were received (see summary and analysis).

After completing its review of community comments on the initial GNSO Post-Expiration Domain Name Recovery (PEDNR) report [PDF, 1 MB] and the accompanying survey [PDF, 948 KB], the Working Group has updated the report and developed specific recommendations. The proposed Final Report [PDF, 971 KB] was published for comment on 21 February 2011.

The Public Comment Forum closed on 22 April after drawing 10 community contributions. ICANN staff has posted a summary of the comments. The WG has started its review of the public comments received and aims to finalize its report for submission to the GNSO Council in time for the ICANN meeting in Singapore.

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."