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Multilingual domain names, easier new TLD rules

InternetNZ welcomes multilingual domain names and easier rules for new TLDs

Media Release – 27 June 2008

InternetNZ (the Internet Society of New Zealand Inc) today welcomed two significant decisions announced at a meeting of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), which has just concluded in Paris, France.

In what amounts to a major opening of the Internet’s domain name system, ICANN has announced two major changes, says InternetNZ Deputy Executive Director Jordan Carter.

First, the process for creating new global Top Level Domains is to be opened, allowing for easier creation of new domains (like the existing com or .org names). The current twenty-one gTLDs, as well as country code domains like .nz, will face more competition, and Internet users will have more choices.

Cities, for example, could apply for their own domain names. So could language communities, corporate brand names, or even individuals. The details to be finalised include the application process, and it is important to remember that applicants will have to show they have the technical capability to run a domain name registry.

Secondly and more importantly, ICANN has approved a new process for the creation of Internationalised Domain Names or IDNs. These names allow people to use the Internet in their own languages and scripts, rather than having to use the Latin script we are all familiar with in New Zealand, says Carter.

“While ICANN has more work to do in filling out the details of these decisions in the coming months, these very important decisions secure an Internet that will be more relevant and more useful for Internet users in the future.

“InternetNZ welcomes these changes and will continue its engagement with ICANN to see them implemented.”


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