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Global Internet Stakeholders Convene in Abu Dhabi for ICANN60

Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates – 30 October 2017 – Today, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) kicked off its 60th Public Meeting in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (UAE). From 28 October to 3 November, more than 2,500 regional and global participants are gathering for discussions about the policies regarding the Internet's system of unique identifiers. One of the key topics at ICANN60 is the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) of the European Union. The meeting is also an important forum for cross-community discussions on a number of ongoing projects in ICANN. The host of the meeting is the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) of the UAE.

H.E. Hamad Obaid Al Mansoori, Director General of the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) of the UAE, spoke at the ICANN60 Opening Ceremony. Al Mansoori remarked, "The significance of this event stems from the fact that ICANN has always been the safety valve for the Internet world. With a four-billion internet penetration worldwide, we can touch the unique role of this organization in maintaining the momentum of the Internet". He added, "ICANN's functions, from registration management to dispute resolution and new top-level domains, have become so important that they cannot be missed."

Al Mansoori presented Dr. Stephen Crocker, ICANN Board Chair, with a gift in recognition of his lifelong efforts toward the development of the global Internet. Dr. Crocker, who is retiring right after ICANN60, reflected on ICANN's journey during his tenure. "My greatest source of pride when it comes to this organization is quite simply – that it works," said Crocker. "Furthermore, it works better and more inclusively than many ever thought possible. The security, stability and resiliency of the Domain Name System are in good hands. In the early days, it was called the 'ICANN experiment.' We don't hear that anymore, because the experiment has proven successful."

Göran Marby, ICANN President and CEO, named Crocker the recipient of 2017 Leadership Award in tribute to his tireless dedication to both ICANN and the wider Internet community. "Every year, the ICANN Leadership Award is given to outstanding individuals in our community who demonstrate extraordinary commitment to ICANN. It is an award for people who remain true to the community's core values, chosen by the ICANN org's Executive Team" said Marby. He added, "This year, there is no other choice, and I think you all will agree."

ICANN Public Meetings are held three times a year in different regions around the globe, enabling community members from around the globe to participate in person. These meetings offer sessions such as workshops, forums, and meetings on the development and implementation of policies related to the Internet's system of unique identifiers.

More Information:

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Media Contacts:

Luna Madi
Communications Director, EMEA
Istanbul, Turkey
Tel: +90 533 0313505
Email: luna.madi@icann.org

Buket Coskuner
Global Communications Coordinator, EMEA
Istanbul, Turkey
Tel: +90 533 4876254
Email: buket.coskuner@icann.org

About Dr. Stephen Crocker:

Dr. Crocker has been involved in the Internet since its inception. In the late 1960s and early 1970s, while he was a graduate student at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), he was part of the team that developed the protocols for the Advanced Research Projects Agency Network (ARPANET) and laid the foundation for today's Internet.

About ICANN:

ICANN's mission is to help ensure a stable, secure, and unified global Internet. To reach another person on the Internet, you need to type an address – a name or a number – into your computer or other device. That address must be unique so computers know where to find each other. ICANN helps coordinate and support these unique identifiers across the world. ICANN was formed in 1998 as a not-for-profit public-benefit corporation with a community of participants from all over the world.

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""icann.org"" is not an IDN."