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Irish Communications Minister Expresses Support for Multistakeholder Model, IANA Stewardship Transition

Dublin, Ireland… Irish Minister of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, Alex White, expressed Ireland's support of both the multistakeholder model of Internet governance and the IANA Stewardship Transition today, during the Opening Ceremony of ICANN's 54th Public Meeting. The meeting, taking place in Dublin, Ireland, from 18-22 October, has convened members of the global ICANN community to discuss and develop policy related to the Internet's Domain Name System (DNS).

"I commend the work of all those who have devoted so much of their time and energy to engage with the multistakeholder process. Ireland firmly supports the multistakeholder model of Internet governance," said White.

The ICANN community has convened in Dublin to collaborate on a variety of issues impacting the DNS, including a set of proposals related to last year's announcement that the United States intends to transition its stewardship of the IANA functions, which are key elements of the Internet's Domain Name System (DNS), to the global multistakeholder community.

White expressed Ireland's support for the United States' decision during the ceremony, stating, "I believe…that this diverse and vibrant community must have a voice in how the Internet is governed. So I welcome and applaud the decision of the United States government to give voice to this community and to facilitate the transition to a truly multistakeholder model of Internet governance."

ICANN Board Chair Dr. Stephen Crocker assured the community of the Board's continued support, stating, "This meeting, ICANN54, is an important milestone. The finish line we believe is now in sight. The Board has certainly come together and is committed to facilitate and support the community in every way that we can, and it's my sincere hope that we all come together in a positive spirit that is punctuated by mutual respect."

ICANN also announced the winner of the 2015 Leadership award - Armenian Internet pioneer and former ICANN Fellow Siranush Vardanyan. The award is given to members of the global Internet community who have demonstrated a commitment to protecting and promoting the multistakeholder model.

Those unable to attend ICANN54 in person are highly encouraged to participate remotely. Details for doing so can be found for any of the sessions listed at

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To learn more about ICANN54 in Dublin, please visit:

To download high-resolution photos of the meeting, please visit:

Media Contacts

Luna Madi
Communications Director, EMEA
London, U.K.
Tel: +44 7780947574

James Cole
Global Media Coordinator
Washington, D.C.
Tel: +1 202 733 7598


ICANN's mission is to ensure a stable, secure and unified global Internet. To reach another person on the Internet you have to type an address into your computer - a name or a number. That address has to be unique so computers know where to find each other. ICANN coordinates these unique identifiers across the world. Without that coordination we wouldn't have one global Internet. ICANN was formed in 1998. It is a not-for-profit public-benefit corporation with participants from all over the world dedicated to keeping the Internet secure, stable and interoperable. It promotes competition and develops policy on the Internet's unique identifiers. ICANN doesn't control content on the Internet. It cannot stop spam and it doesn't deal with access to the Internet. But through its coordination role of the Internet's naming system, it does have an important impact on the expansion and evolution of the Internet. For more information please visit:

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."