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Old 20th February 2008, 06:56 PM
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ICANN Blog...questions and comments by me, RD, more.

We have some interesting conversation going with ICANN about issues regarding idn.com, etc. as well as idn.idn rollout.

For those that want to join in, this is probably NOT the place to bash them publically. These guys are more like the "messengers" from ICANN, not the policymakers. They can hopefully help to get some press down the road for idn.com.

At any rate, it is nice to FINALLY have someone willing to talk about idn issues whether I (we) like their responses or not.

http://blog.icann.org/?p=276#comments
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Old 20th February 2008, 07:09 PM
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Re: ICANN Blog...questions and comments by me, RD, more.

To paraphrase the Python classic you reference, there are no Messiahs here and there are no very naughty boys either. Just people doing hard work. And they have results to show they are getting somewhere.

Paul Levins


lol - at least they haven't lost their sense of humor.

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Old 20th February 2008, 07:30 PM
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Re: ICANN Blog...questions and comments by me, RD, more.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bwhhisc
For those that want to join in, this is probably NOT the place to bash them publically.

Heh, looks like it's already been done by our most eloquent spokesman.

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Old 20th February 2008, 07:36 PM
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Re: ICANN Blog...questions and comments by me, RD, more.

I always enjoy a good MP reference 8)

But seriously we need new messengers. The IDN community comes off looking awful here, as we do in most public discussions. Antagonizing and browbeating these guys is not the best tactic - shouting people down just doesn't work when they stop listening.

I think Kieren and Paul Levins deserve a lot of credit. They certainly shouldn't be held responsible for everything we don't like about ICANN or it's policies or it's activities in recent years.
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Old 20th February 2008, 08:48 PM
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Re: ICANN Blog...questions and comments by me, RD, more.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mdw
I always enjoy a good MP reference 8)

But seriously we need new messengers. The IDN community comes off looking awful here, as we do in most public discussions. Antagonizing and browbeating these guys is not the best tactic - shouting people down just doesn't work when they stop listening.

I think Kieren and Paul Levins deserve a lot of credit. They certainly shouldn't be held responsible for everything we don't like about ICANN or it's policies or it's activities in recent years.
It is nice to have a conduit to talk to them directly. Let's take advantage of it and see if we can tactfully get our point across.

My point to them is that idn.com is a good starting point and stepping stone to eventually roll out idn.idn. They need to read guys like "g"'s post about politics in the Middle East and how the idn.idn names may end up being parceled out by the government.

It is a mystery to me why they do not even give a small push to idn.com as a "starting point" for IDN introduction and usage. Can only be that there is some major discord and lack of cooperation between ICANN and Verisign.
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Old 20th February 2008, 09:09 PM
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Re: ICANN Blog...questions and comments by me, RD, more.

It baffles me too, why they are not publicizing IDN.com/net, etc...

At least with the added public comments, those that are checking the blog, will find out they exist.
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Old 20th February 2008, 10:00 PM
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Re: ICANN Blog...questions and comments by me, RD, more.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Clarke
It baffles me too, why they are not publicizing IDN.com/net, etc...At least with the added public comments, those that are checking the blog, will find out they exist.
I think the "natives" may not be too happy with ICANN when they find out that IDN.com has been kept "secret" from publicity and broader implementation because of ICANN's non-cooperatin with Verisign on this issue for whatever reason.

No doubt native internet users may be irked that ICANN (to some degree) did little to nothing to "disclose" the availablity of IDN.com etc. while the "domain developers" have been snapping up the better names at an increased rate over the course of the last few years. IDN.IDN in theory is their "good" solution to get IDNs to the various natives until you begin to explore the politics behind the various registries that will handle them and the politics that will dictate who gets what before the "everyday" internet user gets their chance. JMO.

Last edited by bwhhisc; 20th February 2008 at 10:06 PM..
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Old 20th February 2008, 10:32 PM
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Re: ICANN Blog...questions and comments by me, RD, more.

Interesting message re .py/.ru here...

http://forum.icann.org/lists/idn-cct.../msg00007.html

A shame ICANN can't get their systems away from iso-8859-1
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Old 20th February 2008, 10:47 PM
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Re: ICANN Blog...questions and comments by me, RD, more.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Drewbert
Interesting message re .py/.ru here...
http://forum.icann.org/lists/idn-cct.../msg00007.html
A shame ICANN can't get their systems away from iso-8859-1
Letter below. Interesting...

QUOTE:
Correct IDN string for Russia
To: <idn-cctld-issues@xxxxxxxxx>
Subject: Correct IDN string for Russia
From: "Alexei Sozonov" <sozonov@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Fri, 25 Jan 2008 18:22:40 -0800

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

WE PREVIOUSLY POSTED USING CYRILLIC CHARACTERS WHERE APPROPRIATE, TO ILLUSTRATE
CLEARLY THE SITUATION. THIS PAGE ON ICANN'S SITE DOES NOT SUPPORT CYRILLIC
CHARACTERS. SO WE HAVE HAD TO CONVERT OUR COMMENTS, ELIMINATING THE CYRILLIC
AND USING ONLY ROMAN CHARACTERS, AS BELOW.

To the ICANN CEO and to the Request to Provide Input on Introduction of IDN
ccTLDs:

We must select the correct IDN string for Russia to use in its ccTLD. That is the Cyrillic string .py. Historically over thousands of years, Russians have proudly used a single name for their country, in Cyrillic of course. And pronunciation of the country name in Russian - "ROOS" - is similar to the way one pronounces "Russia" in English and also generally around the world.

To date the ASCII ccTLD designated by ICANN for Russia, based on ISO 3166-1, and used by Russians for more than a decade, is the string ".ru". This is naturally pronounced "ROO" by all Russians, as in "kangaROO". The Cyrillic string ".py", being a natural shortening of the country name pronounced "ROOS", is also pronounced "ROO". Thus for more than a decade, Russian Internet users have always pronounced the ending of every domestic web-site as "dot ROO". And they have named the Russian segment of the Internet "ROO-net".

In virtually all conversation, writings, advertisements and billboards, all over the nation, the transliteration/translation of any web-site identifier or of an email address has been ".py" - the Cyrillic that is pronounced "ROO". This has incurred billions of rubles spent over decades and has become ingrained in use by the 25 million Russian Internet users and the 250 million Russian population at large. To a Russian speaker it is unthinkable that any ICANN-designated IDN TLD intended for the country Russia be anything other than ".py". That is simply unthinkable. Moreover, the Cyrillic ".py" - now for long years - has in fact already become
firmly entrenched in Russian use of the Internet.

ICANN showed no interest in addressing the needs of IDN worldwide when the IDN technology was widely available and tested in Asia, from 1999. In Russia - as in similar indigenous launches in China, Arabia and elsewhere - an indigenous IDN TLD Cyrillic ".py" launched several years ago. That Cyrillic ".py" has been successfully operational since then. The many facets of Russia's Internet
community have supported it. That includes most Registrars and Resellers, and many ISPs are supporting. For example the dominant national Cybercafe chain, with thousands of outlets, has supported it for over five years.

With many thousands of names registered, Cyrillic ".py" also enjoys widespread media support. Most significantly, corporations and other institutions have registered these ".py" domains and have been including them in their advertising campaigns for years. The deployed technology follows the IDNA standard, recommended by IETF since 2003 and approved by ICANN. Critically and very responsibly, Russia has taken the conservative approach of registering ONLY Cyrillic characters in front of its Cyrillic ".py".

Now, ICANN in the past year has stepped up belatedly to solve the IDN "mess", finally - a step we wholeheartedly applaud. In various discussion "tracks" about deploying country-code IDN equivalents, there has been a suggestion that Cyrillic ".py" should not be designated to Russia. The grounds? It is visually similar to the existing ASCII ccTLD string ".py", assigned to Paraguay and used by this respected nation for over a decade.

This argument holds that someone could register a string composed of Cyrillic characters preceding the ASCII ".py". The purpose would be intentional confusion with another registration, but fully Cyrillic, one with the same preceding characters followed of course by a Cyrillic IDN ".py", not ASCII. As we know, this is called "homographic spoofing". The difference between Cyrillic and ASCII, when these two characters are combined as capital letters, is obvious to any native Russian speaker. When the
characters are lower-case characters, there is similarity. But beyond that, almost all this undesirable homographic spoofing goes away if ICANN had previously followed the obvious guideline IETF expected, when it formalized IDNA: namely, that any and all IDN domain names must be in a SINGLE script throughout. A wise deployment would have restricted registration to ONLY the
characters normally used in a single language script.

Unicode may be an all-encompassing character-set, and many European languages do share a large Latin character sub-set. This may have encouraged IDN.ascii composite domains, during the original Versign testbed in 2000 and in the formal deployments, later, after 2003 and continuing today. But if wisdom had prevailed instead, the rules for Paraguay's ".py" would have allowed for
registering only ASCII characters relevant to Spanish or Guarani in front (Guarani is Paraguay's indigenous language and uses European Roman characters). And Russia's Cyrillic ".py" would have only Russian Cyrillic characters in front.

We in Russia exercised early and continuing prudence with our ".py" where only Cyrillic characters are allowed to precede the Cyrillic TLD. If ICANN had helped us by adopting a similar restraint in its practice, most of the current homographic spoofing would have been eliminated. Homographic spoofing would be seen for the "Red Herring" argument that it is. And the needs of Russia's
hundreds of millions would not be sidelined owing to historical errors. Needless to say, we don't want at stake inside Russia the attractiveness and fairness of ICANN as legitimate world arbiter for the Internet.

Even if the current final draft on policy for IDN gTLDs continues to allow mixed-script registrations between first and top levels in the domain name - which could legitimate them - a modicum of sense prevailed in finally disallowing mixed script within a level itself. This does illustrate that distinctions among language scripts can and, so, must be made. As no deployments of IDN gTLDs have occurred yet, it is still not too late to reverse this fundamental error for IDN gTLDs. Since the debate on IDN ccTLDs is
at an earlier stage, if not for IDN gTLDs, at least for IDN ccTLDs caution should and must be exercised. Only a single script should be allowed all the way through first, top and other levels.

In short, we applaud ICANN's renewed, if belated, interest in IDN TLDs. And we are happy that ICANN is considering the needs of Russians. Russians want, and ICANN must designate to Russians, Cyrillic ".py". In fact, Paraguay's NIC (NIC.py) has, on its own, wisely and responsibly obviated the historical error. On their own, they have allowed only registrations in Latin characters. And except for a small percentage of domains, they also have only registered third-level domains behind com.py, net.py, edu.py, org.py, mil.py, and gov.py. Of course the third level is inhospitable to spoofing, if Paraguay did not limit registrations only to Latin
characters - which in fact it does limit.

On its own Paraguay has conducted its NIC responsibly, so there indeed is no barrier to Paraguay and Russia cooperating happily together - Paraguay with ASCII and Russia with Cyrillic. Those who would put the red herring of homographic spoofing as an obstacle fail to understand the fundamentals.

(1) While the two ".py's" may be visually similar when in lower case, spoofing can be eliminated with suitable and simple conditions in the agreement with end-users. In the unlikely event, spoofers' names will be blocked and taken from them, then offered to the good-will owner of the name that is already registered and visually similar.

(2) Spoofing can be vastly reduced if ICANN simply elects to allow only a single script all the way through first, top and other levels. This would just follow the good practice of the Paraguay NIC.

Spoofing is a crime and should be treated accordingly. It is monstrous, however, to hold a whole nation hostage to petty thievery. That indeed would not be the right policy. We do believe that remote possibilities, defused as above, will not derail ICANN from leading the Internet Community in the right direction.

Yours Sincerely,

Alexei Sozonov

Russian Language Name Internet Consortium, www.rlnic.ru

Sergey Sharikov

Regtime.net, ICANN Accredited Registrar, www.regtime.net

Last edited by bwhhisc; 21st February 2008 at 12:05 AM..
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Old 20th February 2008, 11:30 PM
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Re: ICANN Blog...questions and comments by me, RD, more.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bwhhisc
Letter below. Can anyone here straighten up the unicode in the text, I tried converting to UTF8 but not successful.
Try this link:
http://forum.icann.org/lists/idn-cct.../msg00008.html

Quote:
We must select the correct IDN string for Russia to use in its ccTLD. That is
the Cyrillic string .py.
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Old 21st February 2008, 12:06 AM
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Re: ICANN Blog...questions and comments by me, RD, more.

Quote:
Originally Posted by clipper
Thanks Clipper, I repasted the letter in up top so it can be clearly read.
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Old 21st February 2008, 12:20 AM
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Re: ICANN Blog...questions and comments by me, RD, more.

Hmmm. All the .py in that letter have been converted to ASCII .py - which certainly doesn't help anyone's understanding of the matter.

In another interesting post another Russian guy says that .ру is not an option, because Russian's pronounce both ASCII .ru and cyrillic .ру as "roo", so if someone was telling someone a domai name over the phone or in a radio advert, people would end up at the wrong address.

Due to this he says .рф has to be the chosen one and reckons the Russian Internet industry is behind that choice.
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Old 21st February 2008, 12:24 AM
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Re: ICANN Blog...questions and comments by me, RD, more.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Drewbert
Hmmm. All the .py in that letter have been converted to ASCII .py - which certainly doesn't help anyone's understanding of the matter.
I just noticed that too. For those that want a view with the unicode (mine came up scrambled even with UTF8,)
use Drew's original link in post #1.
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Old 21st February 2008, 07:02 AM
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Re: ICANN Blog...questions and comments by me, RD, more.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mdw
But seriously we need new messengers. The IDN community comes off looking awful here, as we do in most public discussions.
I agree. These conspiracy theories, etc, make us all look like - dare I say it - a fringe cult.

Can I suggest that someone contributing to the blog *sensibly* brings the discussion around to aliasing? I think the point that ICANN has not done enough to publicise IDN.com has been made well enough. It would be good to get their opinions on some other matters of importance to us all before they get so pissed off that they stop answering.
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Old 21st February 2008, 07:10 AM
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Re: ICANN Blog...questions and comments by me, RD, more.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jay
I agree. These conspiracy theories, etc, make us all look like - dare I say it - a fringe cult.

Can I suggest that someone contributing to the blog *sensibly* brings the discussion around to aliasing? I think the point that ICANN has not done enough to publicise IDN.com has been made well enough. It would be good to get their opinions on some other matters of importance to us all before they get so pissed off that they stop answering.
I was getting ready to ask you to introduce yourself but i see you are Domain_Trader any reason for the new registration ?
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Old 21st February 2008, 07:14 AM
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Re: ICANN Blog...questions and comments by me, RD, more.

Quote:
Originally Posted by thegenius1
I was getting ready to ask you to introduce yourself but i see you are Domain_Trader any reason for the new registration ?
MJ asked me the same question. I'm known as Jay at IDNtraders.com, so as a matter of consistency I thought it was better to change my handle sooner rather than later. Too many different identities gets everyone confused (including myself, as I think I'm starting to develop a split personality!).
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Old 21st February 2008, 07:42 AM
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Re: ICANN Blog...questions and comments by me, RD, more.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jay
I agree. These conspiracy theories, etc, make us all look like - dare I say it - a fringe cult.

Can I suggest that someone contributing to the blog *sensibly* brings the discussion around to aliasing? I think the point that ICANN has not done enough to publicise IDN.com has been made well enough. It would be good to get their opinions on some other matters of importance to us all before they get so pissed off that they stop answering.
I wholly agree with everything here.

Further, it really isn't ICANN's job to push IDN.COM. It's Verisign's.
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Old 21st February 2008, 08:20 AM
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Re: ICANN Blog...questions and comments by me, RD, more.

Quote:
Originally Posted by clipper
I wholly agree with everything here.

Further, it really isn't ICANN's job to push IDN.COM. It's Verisign's.
Yes, it's Verisign that has done a piss poor job of promoting IDN.com. Not sure why people are bashing ICANN over it.
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Old 21st February 2008, 08:27 AM
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Re: ICANN Blog...questions and comments by me, RD, more.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jay
Yes, it's Verisign that has done a piss poor job of promoting IDN.com. Not sure why people are bashing ICANN over it.

Dot com isn't the issue. The issue is that in nearly all of their mass media communications they say "IDNs are coming sometime in the future", which is not true. IDNs are here today, in in at least 5 gTLD extensions.

If they don't want to say the word "dot com", fine. I agree, it's not up to them to promote "dot com". But saying that IDNs are coming leaves the general public with the impression that they don't exist yet, and that is not true. The right thing for them to do would be to say "IDNs are working today under several global top level domains for many languages. In the future, some of the top level domains themselves will be constructed from non-english characters.". But they won't say it, and this is what people are taking issue with.

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Old 21st February 2008, 08:37 AM
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Re: ICANN Blog...questions and comments by me, RD, more.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jacksonm
they won't say it, and this is what people are taking issue with.
.
I think it is a bit to do with terminology and a bit to do with avoiding being made a laughing stock. When ICANN talk of IDN they primarily have in mind the extensions. I would think that in their minds (as in the minds of most member countries), IDN.com is not truly IDN. I know that is a matter of debate, but ICANN would look like a joke if they started announcing IDN was here and then people pointed out that it really wasn't. That is why this whole matter can't be addressed without bringing the issue of aliasing into it, because only on these grounds can IDN.COM truly be said to be IDN (in the eyes of the rest of the world at least).
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