The concept that all domain names and email addresses should be treated equally.
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The Internet is Evolving; Are Your Systems Keeping Pace?
The introduction of new generic top-level domains (gTLDs) and Internationalized Domain Names (IDNs) into the Internet ecosystem through the New gTLD Program, has enabled the largest expansion of the Domain Name System (DNS). In addition to fostering innovation, competition, and consumer choice in the domain name industry, this expansion has unlocked the potential to reach communities and users around the world that face linguistic barriers to the Internet.
By allowing users to access the Internet in their chosen online identities and local languages (non-ASCII characters and scripts), private sectors, governments, and civil societies have the ability to better serve their communities and take advantage of significant business opportunities. Analysys Mason estimates that there is a potential of USD 9.8 billion in revenue growth to come from both existing users of new gTLDs and new users accessing the Internet through IDNs (i.e. in their local language or script).
Universal Acceptance provides the gateway to the next billion Internet users.
What is Universal Acceptance?
Universal Acceptance (UA) is a fundamental requirement for a truly multilingual and digitally inclusive Internet. UA ensures that all domain names, including long new TLDs and IDNs, and email addresses are treated equally and can be used by all Internet-enabled applications, devices, and systems. Technically, they must accept, validate, store, process, and display all domain names equally, consistently, and correctly.
Until Universal Acceptance is achieved, it is not possible to provide a consistent and positive experience for all Internet users.
What it Addresses
Universal Acceptance addresses an issue that prevents some Internet users from successfully completing transactions online. The problem can arise when applications reject or don't treat all parts of the domain name correctly, which can occur if those domain names are longer than three characters (e.g., .photography) or in different languages and scripts (e.g., .рф for "Russia Federation" in the Cyrillic script).
Why it Matters
To excel in the long run, organizations and businesses need to ensure that their systems and services will work with the continuously expanding and evolving domain name space. When organizations and businesses are UA-ready, they set themselves up for future success and prospective business growth by supporting their customers' chosen identities.
UA-ready websites, applications, and services lead to better user experiences. When a company is UA-ready, email addresses in any script from any domain name can be used. When a site is UA-ready, it will allow customers with new TLDs and IDNs to successfully use the site and its forms.
Are You EAI-Ready?
Check to see if your mail server advertises support for receiving internationalized email addresses: https://uasg.tech/eai-check/.
Get UA-Ready: Resources
Developers and IT Leaders
An inventory of all available material can be found, here.
UA Program Projects
- The Universal Acceptance Steering Group (UASG) was founded in 2015 and is a community-led initiative tasked with undertaking activities that effectively promote Universal Acceptance (UA). For more information and to get involved, visit: https://uasg.tech/.
- Stay up to date on the latest UA news here, and follow @UASGTech on Twitter.