ICANN 80 Preview

The ICANN 80 Policy Forum will take place between Monday, June 10, and Thursday, June 13, 2024, at the Kigali Convention Centre. The Policy Forum will be held in conjunction with the 5th High Level Government Meeting (HLGM) on Sunday 9 June. The HLGM is an opportunity for government ministers and senior officials to clarify the role governments play in advising the ICANN Board on public policy issues relevant to the secure and stable operation of the DNS. The HLGM itself facilitates high-level discussions on internet governance issues to promote government engagement with ICANN.

The HLGM is well-timed, with the multistakeholder approach to internet governance firmly on the international agenda. In May 2024, the NetMundial+10 meeting took place, as a 10th anniversary of that effort, and reaffirmed NetMundial’s set of common principles and important values that contribute to an inclusive, multistakeholder, effective, legitimate, and evolving internet governance framework. There are also discussions on the UN Secretary General’s proposed Global Digital Compact (GDC) underway. The GDC is intended to be agreed at the Summit of the Future in September 2024, and outlines shared principles for an open, free, and secure digital future. All these discussions are leading up to the 2025 World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS+20). The original WSIS in 2005 led to the creation of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF) – a multistakeholder forum for discussing internet governance issues. WSIS+20 will hopefully renew this mandate and avoid the temptation to create a multilateral body to compete with the IGF.

The Policy Forum itself will be a freefall into detail after the HLGM, with dedicated working sessions on the Registration Data Request System (RDRS), Registration Data Policy implementation, Privacy and Proxy Services Accreditation (PPSAI). There will also be policy development working sessions on gTLD domain transfers, and IDN variant management. Work on DNS Abuse will continue, with gTLDs considering what success looks like and how to continue progressing their work, while the ccTLD community asks if there are any lessons they can learn from the gTLD amendments.

As the Q2 2026 application window approaches, the ongoing implementation work for the next round of new gTLDs will continue. There are three working sessions for the implementation review team (IRT) for the next round. The sessions will be reviewing draft text for the Applicant Guidebook (AGB), which will set out the rules for applying for a new gTLD.

If you do plan to attend in person, it is essential that you register by 7 June. Virtual attendees will also need to register before they can access the schedule and the links to participate in sessions but can do so right through to the end of the meeting.

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