[Gnso-newgtld-wg-wt5] Conclusion of CWG-UCTN on 2-character codes

Alexander Schubert alexander at schubert.berlin
Fri Jan 19 14:00:09 UTC 2018

Dear Liz, dear Ann-Cathrin,


Valuable input! Totally agree with it!

Our base is indeed -as pointed out by your contributions- the AGB 2012 as
summarized by Martin:

* Geographic Names Review

o Treatment of Country or Territory Names

o Geographic Names Requiring Government Support


Not included in this summary is the two character provision, which is to be
found in Module 2, 3.1., page 66 of 338:

•             Part III - Policy Requirements for Generic Top-Level Domains

3.1  Applied-for gTLD strings in ASCII must be composed

of three or more visually distinct characters. Two-character

ASCII strings are not permitted, to avoid

conflicting with current and future country codes

based on the ISO 3166-1 standard.

So in my eyes 3.1. is in so far relevant to WT5 and its scope as it clearly
refers to “country codes” – and thus creates an affiliation with
“geographical terms”.

To answer Liz’s question: The current status quo per AGB 2012 allows for two
character IDN applications, if these are NOT (optically) looking like a
ASCII letter (see 3.2.1 and 3.2.2). Otherwise two character (ASCII) strings
are invalid as application. So the current AGB would CLEARLY DENY a gTLD
.f1 or .3m!

We could now simply say: Our scope are only GEOGRAPHICAL terms! “f1” isn’t
geographical – hence we have no scope to elaborate about it – we can’t
“lift” it’s ban in WT5. If want to lift that ban: it has to be done in
another WT. Not in WT5. 

In that respect: should we add “3.1., in Module 2, page 66 of 338” to
Martin’s summary and with that end the discussion about the 2 character








From: Gnso-newgtld-wg-wt5 [mailto:gnso-newgtld-wg-wt5-bounces at icann.org] On
Behalf Of Ann-Cathrin Marcussen
Sent: Friday, January 19, 2018 2:49 PM
To: Kris Seeburn <seeburn.k at gmail.com>
Cc: Icann Gnso Newgtld Wg Wt5 <Gnso-newgtld-wg-wt5 at icann.org>
Subject: Re: [Gnso-newgtld-wg-wt5] Conclusion of CWG-UCTN on 2-character


Hi Kris, 


I see your point about governments in certain countries and that they may
want to use the 3 letter ISO code as a TLD, but no matter what we end up
recommending in WT5, a 3 letter combination in ASCII should, in my opinion,
always be a gTLD. This just in addition to the fact that the scope of WT 5
is limited to geographic names - no matter how many letters or characters it
may be in what we end up defining as a “geographic name”. 


I look forward to the next part of our work in WT 5 and suggest that we
start with the ABG 2012 definitions, (see Martins email of 8 January 18 that
lists the wording of ABG + and and go through
each and every part of the existing  definitions of geographic name. Then we
would have a set of definitions and from thereon we can start discussing the
requirements and conditions for future applications. 








On 19 Jan 2018, at 13:13, Kris Seeburn <seeburn.k at gmail.com
<mailto:seeburn.k at gmail.com> > wrote:

I agree with you but the actual situation still takes 2 character for most
countries based on the ISO standard. However ISO also provides a 3 character
for countries which is usually used by Airlines or on your passport.  


For example a cctld has MU and then 3 characters becomes MUR or MRU
whichever ii is. This is a thin line situation where we need to be careful
about. So when it comes to GEO which one has a priority cctld or gnso who
will decide. With the Problem we face in certain countries where individuals
hold the 2 characters . I am guessing Government may well go and use the 3


I would perhaps suggest like a standing committee be the ones that takes all
the so/ac to allocate or not else we may get into eternal fights for


On Jan 19, 2018, at 16:03, Ann-Cathrin Marcussen
<ann-cathrin.marcussen at norid.no <mailto:ann-cathrin.marcussen at norid.no> >


Hi all,  


In my opinion it is outside the scope of WT5 to judge anything else than
geographic terms. In terms of 2 character (ie F1 and 3M etc)  those, in my
mind, aren’t geo terms and thus out of scope. 


I am also of the opinion that we should keep the system that the requirement
is that a gTLD needs to be at least 3 characters.  







Best regards / Med vennlig hilsen 

Ann-Cathrin Marcussen
Head of Legal

7465 Trondheim

St Olavs Plass 2
0165 Oslo 

Mobil +47 920 14 282
acm at uninett.no <mailto:acm at uninett.no> 

On 18 Jan 2018, at 17:16, Alexander Schubert <alexander at schubert.berlin
<mailto:alexander at schubert.berlin> > wrote:

Hi Rosalia,


Do you support to reserve only the 2 LETTER codes, or all ASCII two
CHARACTER codes? E.g.:  Would you be OK with a gTLD “.f1” or “.3m”?








From: Gnso-newgtld-wg-wt5 [ <mailto:gnso-newgtld-wg-wt5-bounces at icann.org>
mailto:gnso-newgtld-wg-wt5-bounces at icann.org] On Behalf Of Rosal?a Morales
Sent: Thursday, January 18, 2018 5:47 PM
Cc: Icann Gnso Newgtld Wg Wt5 < <mailto:Gnso-newgtld-wg-wt5 at icann.org>
Gnso-newgtld-wg-wt5 at icann.org>
Subject: Re: [Gnso-newgtld-wg-wt5] Conclusion of CWG-UCTN on 2-character


Dear All,


As a member of the already closed CWG-UCTN, I support the consensus that the
group came about regarding 2-letter TLDs: reserving 2-letter codes for
ccTLDs should be maintained.  The effort and many years of discussion of the
CWG-UCTN should serve as a great stepping sone for this working group to
build on. Opening this for debate once again, will lead to lengthy
discussions and we will be reinventing the wheel once again. I strongly
recommend supporting reserving 2-letter codes for ccTLDs as concluded by





On Jan 18, 2018, at 8:43 AM, Timo Võhmar < <mailto:timo.vohmar at internet.ee>
timo.vohmar at internet.ee> wrote:


Some may know that I represent a bit different view on things than Alexander


We do not need to do anything ie reserve anything to anyone and least of all
does the rfc say anything about that. The RFC sets out closed list of what
is generic tld and we know that has not been true for a long time. So what
we have here in case of two letters is just an agreement between different
communities saying that all two letter combinations are reserved for use
under ccTLD policy. We also have renewed this agreement multiple times and
there seems to be no strong demand in changing this. But at the same time
that does not mean that ccTLD cannot be anything else than some two letter


cc in ccTLD stands for country code. Country code can mean any type of
label, name, letter combination that represents some country. Unfortunately
we do not have community wide agreement on how to treat 3-letter ISO country
codes and country names. There is a demand to make these available for use
under ccTLD policy as well as gTLD policy. This need to find a compromise
seems to be one of the reasons we have gathered.


Of course the question at hand is wider - anything that represents anything
with geographical meaning. And we are here by invitation of gNSO with the
new gTLD round in mind but I do believe that it is not possible to change
the current status quo disregarding the interests of countries to protect
and develop their identity. One way to separate generics from country codes
is who runs the delegation and perhaps on what purpose.


And I would once again like to argue that anyone outside our community has
or even should have any notion about meaning of generic and country code
TLDs in the ICANNs policy context. It's all about what the TLD stands for ie
there are few people that associate .tv with Tuvalu nor do I see that there
could be anything generic about .usa. So we are speaking here about how
these TLDs are delegated, regulated and how much control does
registry/government have on how to run the TLD. Noone in the real world will
get confused when suddenly there are n letter TLDs given out under ccTLD nor
2 character TLDs under gTLD policy - these are just TLDs. 


Lets leave the emotional arguments aside and try to find better solution for
geographic terms for the next gTLD round and see if we can find a way to
lift the ban from country labels.


Best Regards,

Timo Võhmar

Representing Estonian internet community, government and ccTLD .ee registry



On Thu, Jan 18, 2018 at 8:12 AM, Greg Shatan <
<mailto:gregshatanipc at gmail.com> gregshatanipc at gmail.com> wrote:

I don't disagree with the idea that all two-letter combinations should be
reserved for potential ccTLD use.  I thought it was worth raising the
question on our recent call so that we could actively test the status quo on
this point.  (Also, nobody was speaking up....)  It appears that this
concept retains broad support.


That said, I would like to take Alexander's invitation to correct him if his
statements are factually incorrect or illogical.  Specifically, it is both
factually incorrect and illogical to couch this in terms of "brands."
There's absolutely no basis or evidence for the proposition that brands have
a particular interest in or desire for two letter TLDs (or that other
applicants have less or more interest or desire).  Intentionally or not,
using that scenario stirs up tensions and creates an adversarial atmosphere
that could be quite counterproductive.  There's no reason to invent a
disagreement or rift that doesn't exist.  


I would therefore suggest that the LAST thing the ccNSO should do is ask
themselves the question posed by Alexander above.  There's no good reason to
pose that question or to approach this issue in that way, and there are
plenty of good reasons not to do so.


Instead, we should approach this as one point on which we have broad support
from all sectors, including many from the brand community.




On Wed, Jan 17, 2018 at 10:45 AM, Alexander Schubert <
<mailto:alexander at schubert.berlin> alexander at schubert.berlin> wrote:

I think the two character TLD question is rather simplistic:

*         We need to reserve ALL two letter combinations – RFP 1591 says so.
Or we need to revise RFC 1591: GOOD LUCK with that one! Easier to revise the
Bible – or the Bill of Rights!

*         We can’t assign two number combinations as they could be confused
with IP addresses: Example 4th level domain “” based on the gTLD

*         What remains are number-letter combinations! That’s 2 times 10
numbers by 26 letters = 520 combinations. With almost NONE of them really
desirable for anybody. The rare desirable ones would be likely BRANDS, such
as “.3m” ( <http://3m.com/> 3m.com) or “.f1” ( <http://f1.com/> f1.com). How
many would that be? A dozen?


On the other hand: Outside of the U.S. (96% of the world population is
non-American) EVERYBODY knows that a two letter TLD is “something
different”. And that is the one and only distinction the ccNSO world owns:
they are the arbiters of the two character namespace on the top-level!
Two-characters = ccTLD. Everything else = gTLD.


If I were the ccNSO I would ask myself: Just so that a handful of brands
COULD (and nobody knows IF they WOULD want) grab a two character
number-letter gTLD: do we have to give up the old order? As ccNSO member and
as GAC member I would clearly draw a line here and say: “NO WAY”. 2
characters is the namespace-characterization of the ccNSO (even when they
only use two letter combinations). Outside of the U.S. it would very much
confuse the Internet User if suddenly SOME 2-character were gTLDs – or
3-letter TLDs were ccTLDs. That would destroy the old order. 

If this is factual incorrect or illogical: please correct me. If you support
this notion: please voice your support!








From: Gnso-newgtld-wg-wt5 [mailto:
<mailto:gnso-newgtld-wg-wt5-bounces at icann.org>
gnso-newgtld-wg-wt5-bounces at icann.org] On Behalf Of Heather Forrest
Sent: Wednesday, January 17, 2018 8:42 AM
To:  <mailto:Gnso-newgtld-wg-wt5 at icann.org> Gnso-newgtld-wg-wt5 at icann.org
Subject: [Gnso-newgtld-wg-wt5] Conclusion of CWG-UCTN on 2-character codes


Dear colleagues,


Following up on Jeff's reference at the end of the WT5 call ended just now
to the conclusions of the Cross-Community WG on the Use of Country and
Territory Names (CWG-UCTN)- 


The conclusion of the CWG-UCTN on 2-character codes, and the rationale for
that conclusion, was:


"The CWG recommends that the existing ICANN policy of reserving 2-letter
codes for ccTLDs should be maintained, primarily on the basis of the
reliance of this policy, consistent with RFC 1591, on a standard established
and maintained independently of and external to ICANN and widely adopted in
contexts outside of the DNS (ISO 3166-1)."


Full report here:


Kind regards,


Heather Forrest


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Kris Seeburn

seeburn.k at gmail.com <mailto:seeburn.k at gmail.com> 

*	 <http://www.linkedin.com/in/kseeburn/>




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