[UA-discuss] Question for UASG Chair candidates: what are strategic obstacles blocking UA?

Anil Jain anil at nixi.in
Thu Mar 23 07:25:30 UTC 2023

Dear Jim and all UASG Community Members 

Jim, thank you for your email and for putting this question. 

Since you already mentioned that I am committed to Universal Acceptance and have a track record of working diligently to attain that objective, I will not place my words here to share more on this to you and the rest of the community about this; rather, I will respond directly to your question. 

Because identifying and addressing difficulties and hurdles requires work and coordination among many stakeholder groups, the response below is entirely in my individual capacity. 

According to me, the most significant strategic hurdles currently impeding Universal Acceptance are: 

Feeling of Urgency : I believe we need to "generate a sense of urgency," which means motivating stakeholders to take appropriate independent action. UASG and ICANN's activities should be educational and proactive, advocating for the necessary activity to attain universal acceptance. The primary goal of ICANN will be to connect those who have impediments with those who can eliminate them, an action on this has already been initiated, and we will soon see some development on it. 

Clear Goal : The requirement of the hour is that domain names in a TLD be used in applications independent of the written script, length, or newness of the TLD. Name registration must function, protocols must function, and services/applications affecting the user must function; function also in the sense that domain names and the identifiers constructed on them are usable in administratively permissible ways. This goal includes the usefulness of Internationalised email addresses, an action on this has already been initiated, and if you will see that today all IDN domains which we from NIXI provides are completely usable from day one as we are providing email with every IDN domain name and also other services required around that. Not just that we also have a dedicated UA desk to listen the concerns form the registrants and try to provide them support. 

UA's demand-side characteristics: Universal Acceptance is a crucial technical prerequisite for an Internet that is truly multilingual and inclusive. It is also essential for realising the full potential of Internationalized Domain Names, Email Address Internationalization, and new generic Top-Level Domains. Application developers and service providers are delaying making their systems UA-ready due to the demand-side components of UA, which must be addressed. Governments and the technical community will be essential in creating demand. To get a sense of the importance of Universal Acceptance, consider India. It has one of the fastest growing internet user populations on the planet and provides an illuminating case study on adoptions of universal acceptance. Since 2014 NIXI is managing 22 IDNs of India and I am CEO of NIXI. I am pleased to share with you that as per the directives of government a committee was formed under my chairmanship here in India to prepare an India Roadmap on Universal Acceptance and Multilingual Internet, and that the Phase 1 report of that committee is now being under implementation in India. [ https://registry.in/system/files/ua-and-multilingual-internet-india.pdf | https://registry.in/system/files/ua-and-multilingual-internet-india.pdf ] 

To summarise, I am confident that we will all recognise that, aside from the founding visionaries of the UASG, the current leadership of the UASG has carried forward the UA work from their successors in a significant way in the last four years, we have significant participation and contributions from the community in the universal acceptance steering group by nearly 700 volunteers, significant technological development has occurred in recent years, and there is still much to be done to achieve universal acceptance. Even the present leadership team came up with the idea for UA Day, which will be celebrated for the first time on March 28, 2023. Current UASG leadership has done a wonderful work to bring all the stakeholders together to celebrate UA day including all SO/AC of ICANN. With my experience as Communication Chair of UASG , we were successful to raise the awareness of importance that's why 42 countries are celebrating UA day on 28th March. We must continue the good work started by Ram Mohan & team and wings provided by Dr. Ajay Data and team. 

With kind regards, 

Anil Kumar Jain 

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