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WHOIS Policy Review Team – Discussion Paper

Comment Period Important Information Links
Open Date: 9 June 2011
Close Date: 23 July 2011 Public Comment Announcement To Submit Your Comments (Forum Closed)
Time (UTC): 23:59 View Comments Submitted Report of Public Comments
Originating Organization: Affirmation of Commitments Mandated Review Team

The WHOIS Policy Review Team wishes to solicit input from the community on its Discussion Paper [PDF, 182 KB], which calls for feedback on the following issues drawn from areas of interest identified in preliminary discussions and interactions with the community:

  • Clarity of Existing Policy
  • Applicable Laws, Privacy issues and Proxy/Privacy
  • ICANN's compliance and enforcement activities
  • Other Issues

Translations of the WHOIS Review Team Discussion Paper:

[PDF, 150 KB]
[PDF, 149 KB]
[PDF, 135 KB]
[PDF, 196 KB]
[PDF, 224 KB]
Current Status: The community's participation is essential to the success of the review and all input will be carefully considered. The WHOIS Review Team also welcomes general comments and feedback on any other issues that the Review Team should consider.
Next Steps: The Review Team will review the feedback submitted via the Public Comment period and draw conclusions. This will help them build their draft report and recommendations.
Staff Contact: Olof Nordling Email:
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."