The call for the IDNs EPDP team will take place on Thursday, 27 March 2023 at 13:00 UTC for 2 hours.

For other places see:


  1. Roll Call and SOI Updates (2 mins)
  2. Welcome and Chair Updates (5 mins)
  3. Items of divergence with ccNSO (50 mins)
  4. Review potential 2a questions (as suggested by the EPDP leadership team) (50 mins)
  5. Public comment format (10 mins)
  6. AOB (3 mins)




Apologies: Satish Babu (tentative), Anil Kumar Jain (tentative), Edmon Chung (tentative)


Audio Recording

Zoom Recording (including audio, visual, rough transcript and chat)

GNSO transcripts are located on the GNSO Calendar

Notes/ Action Items

Action Items


Action Item 1: EPDP Team members to review draft text for the Initial Report explaining areas of divergence between EPDP and ccPDP4 draft recommendations.

Action Item 2: Leadership team will try to work through the Phase 2a questions, estimate the amount of time needed to work through those questions, and any data collection needs and will circle back with the EPDP Team.


Welcome and Chair Updates

  • Today’s meeting is primarily administrative in nature. There is limited attendance, but there will not be substantive deliberations on charter questions on this call.

Items of divergence with ccNSO

  • The Board is in the process of identifying the difference between the EPDP’s recommendations and ccPDP4’s recommendations. The Board would like to have a section in the Initial Report explaining for each identified area of divergence: the nature of the divergence from the perspective of the EPDP, the rationale behind the EPDP recommendation, and the expected impact of the area of divergence.
  • Verbal summary provided by staff of the draft text for the Initial Report for this section related to divergence. The EPDP team will have an opportunity to review the full text:

Action Item 1: EPDP Team members to review draft text for the Initial Report explaining areas of divergence between EPDP and ccPDP4 draft recommendations.


  • Focus is 7 topics that were identified by staff supporting the Board’s consideration of this issue:
    • Main items: 1. Variant label disposition values; 2. Limiting number of delegated variant labels; 3. Impact on delegated TLDs due to RZ-LGR update; 4. String Similarity Review
    • Additional items that this group may or may not need to analyze:
      • 5. Applying for strings in scripts not supported by RZ-LGR: SubPro addressed this topic, so the EPDP team did not.
      • 6. Single character TLDs: The EPDP Team recommended that these may be possible for Han script, but no application can be accepted until relevant guidelines implemented. ccNSO did not address this topic. This may be for the ccNSO to explain.
      • 7. Delegation of successfully evaluated TLD and its variants TLDs: EPDP Team recommended maintaining the timeframe for delegation that existing in the 2012 round. It is unclear how the variant ccTLD will be delegated if the primary TLD has not been delegated yet. This may be for the ccNSO to explain.

Discussion points:

  • It is expected that the 7 points are the ones that the Board will relay to the EPDP and ccPDP teams, although this has not yet come through officially.
  • The expectation is that Edmon will provide communication from the Board.
  • Additional potential point of divergence/difference: second level considerations. It might be good to highlight that this EPDP will produce recommendations relevant to second level labels. The ccPDP discussed some items about the second level. Because of the remit of the ccNSO, these will not result in recommendations, but there may be considerations captured in the Final Report.
    • This might be a similar type of issue as #6 above.
    • This Initial Report will focus on the top level. We could potentially flag this item, noting that there won’t be any recommendations on the second level yet from the EPDP.
  • Reminder: It’s not necessarily a problem that recommendations differ between the two groups. gTLDs and ccTLDs operate under different frameworks and the scope of policy development is different in the two communities. We just need to be able to explain the differences. It is helpful if the EPDP and ccPDP have similar explanations of the inconsistencies in their respective reports.
  • Confirmation from the Board Liaison that the communication from the Board is likely to be very similar to what is being reviewed today. The Board would like an explanation of inconsistencies, but it is not necessarily a problem that there are differences.
  • Reminder: In the draft text, the “Rationale and Impact” for each item attempts to address why the difference is not a problem.

Review potential 2a questions (as suggested by the EPDP leadership team)

  • Reminder, the Board passed a resolution during ICANN76 ( – “Resolved (2023.03.16.08), the Board directs the ICANN Interim President and CEO, or her designee(s), to deliver the Implementation Plan to the Board no later than 1 August 2023. The timely delivery of the Implementation Plan requires the satisfactory completion of the following four deliverables by the last day of the ICANN77 Public Meeting (15 June 2023): . . . A project plan from the GNSO Internationalized Domain Names (IDNs) Expedited Policy Development Process (EPDP) Working Group (WG) identifying all charter questions that will impact the next Applicant Guidebook, along with considerations to ensure a consistent solution on IDN Variant TLDs with the ccPDP4 on IDN ccTLDs (in accordance with prior Board Resolution 2019.03.14.09), and a timeline by when the IDNs EPDP WG will deliver relevant recommendations to the GNSO Council.”
  • The Board would like to understand the timeline for the EPDP Team’s work on “phase 2a” questions. These are phase 2 questions that have a dependency with finalizing the AGB. The leadership team has done some initial analysis and wants to work through that with the group.
  • As the group goes through the potential phase 2a charter questions, EPDP Team members should keep in mind the timeframe for working through deliberations on this group of CQs.
  • Consider whether it might be possible to have a Final Report that combines recommendations from Phase 1 and Phase 2a.
  • List of potential phase 2a questions:
  • The Board is considering a similar analysis that is included in the spreadsheet linked above. 
  • Question: Is it correct that Column B is indicating that if any of the following is implicated, there is a dependency: AGB, application question, contract for future ROs, operational impact?
  • Response: The Board resolution specifically addresses impact on the AGB, so this group may want to refine its analysis to specify if it is a dependency with the AGB or other elements of the New gTLD Program, noting that it’s not completely clear what will be contained in the AGB itself. Best guess is that the scope of the AGB will be similar to 2012.
  • Some items will be referenced in the AGB but will live outside the AGB.
  • We may need to think about these charter questions from the very narrow perspective of impact on the AGB as opposed to impacting contracts etc. We may need further guidance from Council or org about what needs to be in scope for that analysis.

Discussion points

  • C1: Clarification – because this CQ focuses on extending SubPro requirement to existing second level labels, it shouldn’t touch on the AGB or contracts for new applicants. It appears that C1 will not be necessary for the AGB.
    • Comments regarding the substance of the CQ:
      • It could be the case that there are second level variants that are currently not activated but blocked. There are also scenarios where two second level strings are already registered as separate strings, but they could be identified as variants.
      • Concerns raised about the legal implications of panelists who do not have legal obligations and policies whose decisions result in termination of contracts.
      • Reminder that we are not yet discussing substance.
  • C2: This item focuses on already activated IDN variant labels at the second-level, and therefore does not have an impact on the next round.
  • C3: This question refers to both existing and future gTLDs, so could have  dependencies for the next round, but the question regarding mechanism could be an implementation issue that could be handled by the SubPro IRT.
    • Comment on substance of the CQ: ROID should be unique identifiers, so it should not be the same for two registrations of the same entity. ROID is not a good idea.
    • Comment that this is a charter question that informs the content of the AGB (potentially technical questions in the application).
    • Note that, for now, this should be marked as “yes.”
    • The mechanism to ensure the same entity principle at the second level may be referred to in the AGB or other implementation materials, but the level of detail that needs to be in the AGB is not yet clear to this group.
  • Will the AGB be developed by the IRT or separately?
  • IRT itself is comprised of community members. GDS (ICANN org staff) will draft the AGB. The IRT will validate the implementation (the AGB) is true to intent.
  • C3a: Focuses on whether additional mechanisms need to be developed to ensure that the same entity principle is observed at the second level. Conditional on the decision of the group to use ROID as the mechanism. This was initially marked as “no” because it goes into the details of implementation.
    • C3 will touch on managing the same entity principle. We need to be clear as to how we triage these questions. One might argue that any additional mechanism will need to be contractual agreement, which would make it a “yes,” but you might not need it per se for the AGB, in which case it may be a “no.”
    • C3a changed to a “maybe” because of the connection to C3.
  • C4: Initial analysis is that this is a “yes” because it impacts future registries when they apply. Harmonization will impact the IDN tables submitted by the applicants.
  • C4a: Focuses on second level domains under a single TLD that doesn’t have a variant at the top level and whether behavior needs to be the same. This was marked as “no” because it not about the top-level. SubPro already addressed this by saying that they don’t need to behave the same.
  • C5: Regarding mechanism for harmonizing IDN tables – initially categorized as a “no” because this is an implementation question. This might not even be an implementation issue but something that registries need to figure out themselves if harmonization is required.
  • C6: Focuses on IDN table format. IDN tables must be included with applications. Therefore, initial assessment is that this is a “yes.” No objection to keeping C6 as a “yes.”
  • D4: Addresses whether second level domain names should behave as a unit at different points in their lifecycle. This group needs to discuss the impact on the transfer phase. This question is also asking whether other statuses need to synchronized beyond transfers. This was initially sorted as “yes.” If there are labels that are registered by the same registrant, they could be renewed together or separately. If this group makes a recommendation about this, it would need to be in the AGB and/or other elements of the application process, so that applicants know they need to adhere to the requirements. No objections to keep as “yes.”
  • D5: Focuses on fees paid by contracted parties per registration. Links back to discussion on fees in phase 1 (under D1b).
    • If applicant needs to include financial model in the application, it is important for the applicant to have information about fees in advance.
    • 2012 AGB includes the draft RA at the time, draft RA may also be in the next version of the AGB.
    • D5 may need to be part of the AGB – change this item to “yes”
  • D6: Initially marked as “yes” -- due to a potential application question about registration life cycle and potential impact on AGB and contract. Note that this charter question anticipates coordination with RPMs work that has not yet been initiated.
  • D6a: Initially marked as “yes” as it is related to transfer, and references RPMs, so may have an impact on the AGB.
  • D7: Marked as “no” -- If one domain is suspended and the other exists, it won’t impact the same entity requirement. It won’t break the set.
    • If one variant is suspended, will it impact suspension of other variants in the set? This was initially marked as “no”. Changed to “maybe” because new language may be needed in the AGB if it is determined that the suspension of one variant impacts suspension of another.
  • Comment: If there is a consensus policy on IDNs, it shouldn’t be included in the RA.
  • D7a: same entity requirement for suspensions ordered by URS or other dispute resolution mechanisms. This was changed from “no” to “maybe” consistent with D7.
  • D8: Reminder of parking lot question from Edmon linked to this CQ: "What should be included in (or the behaviour of) WHOIS/RDAP for IDN variants, both the IANA whois and the Registry WHOIS?" D8 is preliminarily a “maybe.”
  • F1: Focuses on TMCH. Preliminarily categorized as “yes” because it is related to SAC060, which needs to be addressed before the next round and has a potential impact on the AGB. The group left it as a “yes.”
  • F2: Same as above.
  • G1 and G1a: Marked as “no” because it is not AGB-related.

Action Item 2: Leadership team will try to work through the Phase 2a questions, estimate the amount of time needed to work through those questions, and any data collection needs and will circle back with the EPDP Team.

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