GNSO IDN Working Group

Last Updated: 27 October 2010
18 November 2006

GNSO IDN Working Group

The IDN Working Group operates in the context of the following related activities within ICANN:

(1) There is a President's Advisory Committee on IDNs which has been in operation since November 2005. Amongst other things this committee is tasked with analyzing the challenges relating to the technical implementation of internationalized top level domains and suggestions towards their resolution. IN particular the committee is supervising laboratory tests (see

(2) There has been a working group of gTLD registries and ccTLD registries to create a set of technical Guidelines for the Implementation of IDNs at the second level. See for version 2.1 of the Guidelines dated - 22 Feb 2006.

(3) The GNSO has a Committee developing policy recommendations on new gTLDs, as part of a policy development process called PDP-Dec05. The policies developed for new gTLDs apply to new gTLDs that use the IDN standards. See: for more information.

(4) The ICANN staff have produced a draft issues report on IDNs dated 2 August 2006 available at:

(5) The ccNSO has formed a ccNSO IDN working group. From the minutes of 23 Aug 06 ( the purpose of this group is to: consider what the ccNSO should do on IDN issues, what policy issues should be considered jointly with the GNSO, and liaise with the GNSO and prepare a report on the current status and future steps for the ccNSO on IDN issues.

(6) External to ICANN, the Internet Architecture Board (IAB) has released a document (RFC4690: which provides a review and recommendations for Internationalized Domain Names.

The purpose of the GNSO IDN Working Group is to identify and specify any policy issues that should be considered by the GNSO via a policy development process that have not already been considered within PDP-Dec05. It should do this using the following steps:

(i) review the draft recommendations on new gTLDs (which include IDN gTLDs) from the GNSO's Committee on new gTLDs
(ii) review the current status and outcomes from the laboratory tests,
(iii) review the ICANN staff issues report,
(iv) review the IAB document (RFC4690)
(v) liaise with the ccNSO working Group to discuss any policy issues which they have identified

Note for a policy issue to warrant a policy development process it must meet the following criteria:

(A) is within the scope of ICANN's mission statement;
(B) is broadly applicable to multiple situations or organizations;
(C) is likely to have lasting value or applicability, albeit with the need for occasional updates;
(D) will establish a guide or framework for future decision-making; or
(E) implicates or affects an existing ICANN policy.

Membership: Membership is open to any member of a GNSO constituency or the GNSO Council. ICANN advisory committees may appoint liaisons to the working group.

Voting: Voting will be on the basis of 1 vote per member

Duration: The working Group must complete its work by the end of the ICANN meeting in Portugal on 26-30 March 2007, and provide a report to the GNSO Council.

Chair: The chair will be appointed via election from the existing members of the IDN working group established by the GNSO Council on 18 May 2006 to review the IDN issues report in the lead up to the ICANN meeting in Morocco.