ICANN - Paris/IDN CCTLD discussion

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ICANN Board of Directors Meeting
ICANN Meeting - Paris
Thursday, 26 June 08

PETER DENGATE THRUSH Bruce, was there a further question?
BRUCE TONKIN Yeah, I didn't have a question, but I just think it's important to record for the minutes -- and I guess I'll express this personally -- but, really, the thanks to Paul Twomey and the staff, especially Kurt Pritz, and just the effort that they have undertaken so far. It's difficult when you're dealing with recommendations. And you've heard on the board, there's several in particular that have been contentious from day one. But I think the staff have done a superb job of trying to just focus on taking them at face value, seeing if they are implementable, and testing it from every possible angle to try and actually provide a plan for the community.
So I'd just like to commend the work that the staff have done.
[ Applause ]
PETER DENGATE THRUSH Perhaps the minutes could record that the board joined in the acclamation for that recognition of the staff effort.
Can we move, then, to the next item, which is in relation to IDN and the IDN fast track. I'm going to call upon Demi Getschko to introduce this resolution.
DEMI GETSCHKO Thank you, Peter.
Whereas the ICANN board recognizes that IDNC Working Group developed after extensive community comment a final report on feasible matters for timely fast-track introduction of limited number of IDN ccTLDs associated with the ISO 3166-1 two-letter codes, while an overall long-term IDN ccTLD policy is under development by the ccNSO.
Whereas the IDNC Working Group has concluded its work and has submitted recommendations for the selection and delegation of the fast-track IDN ccTLDs and pursuant to its charter, has taken into account and was guided by consideration of the requirements to
Preserve the security and stability of the DNS, comply with IDNA protocols, take input and advice from technical community with respect to the implementation of IDNs, and build on and maintain the current practices for delegation of ccTLDs, which include the current IANA practices.
Whereas the IDNC Working Group's high-level recommendations require implementation planning.
Whereas, ICANN is looking closely at interaction with the final IDN ccTLD PDP process and potential risks, and intends to implement IDN ccTLDs using a procedure that will be resilient to unforeseen circumstances.
Whereas, staff will consider the full range of implementation issues related to the introduction of IDN ccTLDs associated with the ISO 3166-1 list, including means of promoting adherence to technical standards and mechanisms to cover the costs associated with IDN ccTLDs.
Whereas, the board intends that the timing of the process for introduction of IDN ccTLDs should be aligned with the process for the introduction of new gTLDs.
Resolved, the board thanks the members of the IDNC Working Group for completing their chartered tasks in a timely manner.
Resolved, the board directed staff to, one, post the IDNC Working Group final report for public comments. Two, commence work on implementation issues in consultation with relevant stakeholder. And, three, submit a detailed implementation report, including a list of any outstanding issues, to the board in advance of the ICANN Cairo meeting in November 2008.
PETER DENGATE THRUSH Thank you, Demi. Is there a seconder for that resolution?
Thank you, Dennis.
Any discussion about this resolution? It takes the same general pattern as we did with the policy for new gTLDs. It's to post the recommendations, commence investigative work on implementation, with a fairly tight reporting-back at Cairo.
JANIS KARKLINS Thank you, Chair.
I would like to say that the GAC welcomes the results of the IDNC Working Group towards development of the fast-track methodology to allow on exceptional basis the introduction of a limited number of country codes -- country code IDNs in top-level domains.
The GAC believes that IDNC Working Group report and the recommendations contained therein provide the basis for the development of an implementation plan and encourages board to initiate this process.
The GAC looks forward to continuing this implementation -- to contributing to these implementation proposals.
The GAC also recalls that in its agreement in New Delhi, that the substantive public policy provisions set out in the -- set out by the GAC in the principles and guidelines for the delegation and administration of the country code top-level domain which were approved by the GAC in 2005 are equally relevant to the introduction of IDN ccTLDs, in particular, the principle of delegation and redelegation.
In this respect, the GAC emphasized that it is primarily for the local Internet community, including the relevant governmental or public authority, to determine the manner in which a string should be selected, the manner in which a registry operator should be selected, and the registry policy that should apply for the selected IDN ccTLD.
The GAC believes that it is appropriate for an applicant to provide authentication of the meaning of the selected string from an internationally recognized organization. UNESCO could be one such organization. And the GAC is willing to contribute further to the process of developing IDN ccTLD general policy, which will replace the fast track in due course.
Thank you, Mr. Chair.
I have a speaking order, beginning with Susan, then Raimundo, then Roberto.
So beginning Susan.
SUSAN CRAWFORD Thank you very much, chairman. Just three comments.
At a very high level, there's no theoretical distinction between IDN ccTLDs associated with the ISO 3166-1 list and new gTLDs. They are all TLDs that will enter into the root in the future. And there's a very high interest in IDNs generally. They've been a long time coming. We've been working on this, on the technical procedures here, for a long time.
So with that brief preamble, just three comments.
First, that I understand the reference to a fast track to mean that it's -- this track is faster than an ordinary ccTLD policy process would be, and that it is our intention, as the resolution says, to align the timing of the new gTLD IDN process and the process for the introduction of these IDN ccTLDs associated with the 3166 list.
So we've tried to be quite precise about that language and helpful to both communities.
Second, it's comforting to me that in the working group paper, the applicants for these new things will have to represent that what they're providing is a meaningful representation of a country name, and that as Janis has said, this will be looked at carefully by a third party.
So what we're talking about here, really, are country names.
And then, third, that there -- there are remaining some crucial open issues. And we talked about some of them in the public forum earlier today. The nature of an agreement between the operator and ICANN, and any technical issues that need to be harmonized between the gTLD work and the ccTLD work.
Thank you very much.
RAIMUNDO BECA Thanks, Peter.
I will speak in Spanish.
Since we are talking about country codes, I have decided to speak in the language of my region. That's why I'm speaking in Spanish.
I just wanted to highlight that as the other documents clearly outlined the president's strategic committee on this issue, ICANN has a legitimacy problem, which is getting resolved as time goes by. This legitimacy problem is in terms of its attributions, largely, in terms of its relations with the government of the United States, and, in particular, even though the delegation and redelegation rules are clearly used. This has nothing to do with what we've been discussing. In other words, these functions stem from what has been invested in the IANA functions.
Country codes have been subjected to this contractual relationship. Thank you.
PETER DENGATE THRUSH Next, the microphone to Roberto.
ROBERTO GAETANO Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
I think that with the moment that I have joined this -- the process of ICANN, that was even before ICANN, it was -- the whole thing was about the introduction of new TLDs. So for what was the previous resolution, I can only express joy for the fact that we are going forward, although it has taken a little bit more time than what I thought when I joined.
But in this case, now that we are talking about IDN TLDs, I would like to express even further satisfaction, because this was something that we at any time take into account in the early days and that has been a very welcome development over the years, as we have discovered that enlarging the ICANN community, it was essential for the inclusiveness that is one of the major principles of ICANN.
It is important to give to a large part of the world that is not familiar with Latin characters the ability to fully explore the Internet.
And I think that what we are doing here when we consider IDN TLDs -- now in this specific resolution, we are talking about IDN ccTLDs -- but generally what we are doing with IDNs is opening up the possibility of a large part of the world that has been partly neglected up to now to fully benefit of the Internet with -- using their own scripts.
And I would like to underline the difference that we have in expanding the gTLD market in ASCII and the TLD market in ASCII, and the introduction of IDNs.
There is a substantial difference. Whereas the introduction of further TLD in ASCII is surely welcome, because it improves the possibility of choice of the users. With the IDNs, we are opening completely a different world. And I think that this cannot be -- cannot be underestimated.
PETER DENGATE THRUSH Thank you, Roberto.
REINHARD SCHOLL Thank you, Peter.
I'd like to make just a small addition to what the chairman of the GAC said. The communiqu? also mentioned a welcomed presentation by UNESCO and ITU representatives regarding a proposed collaboration between their organizations and ICANN to advance multilingualism on the Internet.
Thank you.
Any further contributions?
I note that it's been moved, Demi. Seconded by Dennis. I think the process we've adopted is clear and understood. So I'll put the resolution. All those in favor please raise your hands.
Any opposed?
Any abstentions?
Carried unanimously.
Thank you.
[ Applause ]