Browser IDN display policy: opinions sought

John C Klensin klensin at
Mon Dec 12 20:30:50 CET 2011

--On Monday, December 12, 2011 09:24 -0800 Paul Hoffman
<phoffman at> wrote:

>> If there are going to be rules, by far the best place to
>> enforce them is once at domain registration time, not in real
>> time in performance critical code millions of times a day at
>> access time.
> Fully disagree. That restricts TLDs to never changing their
> policies. A browser vendor might want this convenience, but
> there are plenty of people who would like the browser vendors
> to be more responsive to changes than that so that IDNs can be
> more useful.

Paul, perhaps Gerv should have stated that rule-enforcement
provision differently (and maybe he should have said "by the
registration and delegation process" rather than at a specific
time0, but I disagree with your inference.  But:

-- A domain applicant who doesn't meet requirements at the time
of application should certainly be able to reapply if the
requirements change.

-- A domain applicant who meets requirements at the time of
registration and whose domain is delegated, still has to renew
the registration and, especially given appropriate contract
provisions could be subjected to newer rules at renewal time.
In the case of rules modified to deal with problems, really
egregious, problem-causing, variations from those new rules
could result in domain cancellation.  Note that, especially in
the last year, we've seen an increasing number of domain
cancellations at the demand of various governments.  That makes
me very nervous, but it is happening and, if the relevant
registry is within the jurisdiction of some body with
cancellation-demanding authority, it isn't likely that it will
change (even if efforts to tighten the conditions under which
cancellation can be requested in some countries are
significantly tightened).  From one point of view, those
external interventions are the consequence of industry (read
"ICANN, registries, registrars, and the domaineers"
unwillingness or inability to self-police (see Eric
Brunner-Williams's recent note, which is probably a better
description of the problem than mine).

Whether cancelling registrations or waiting for renewal, changes
involve some time lag but that is true of almost everything else
in this space including both Gerv's list and various "embed the
lists in the DNS" ideas.


More information about the Idna-update mailing list