ICANN and AFTLD Partner to Promote Universal Acceptance in Africa

Dec 05, 2021 (Edited )

Category: Domain Names News

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), in partnership with the African Top Level Domain Organizations (AFTLD) announced the creation of a collaborative Universal Acceptance (UA) training program for members of the African community. The African TLDs Regional Universal Acceptance Training Program will provide a training series on the technical aspects of UA and serve as an opportunity to discuss how to effectively address UA issues in the region, a press release by ICANN stated.

Universal Acceptance of domain names and email addresses is key to achieving a digitally inclusive Internet by ensuring that all valid domain names and email addresses - regardless of script, language, or character length - are accepted equally by all Internet-enabled applications, devices, and systems. This includes supporting domain names using all country code top-level domains (ccTLDs), new and long generic top-level domains (gTLDs), and Internationalized Domain Names (IDNs).

This joint effort between ICANN and AFTLD is designed to raise awareness of UA challenges in the region, to help build capacity to address those challenges, as well as assist ccTLD operators and other stakeholders in developing and implementing robust IDNs and UA-related systems and policies.

"Building programs focused on Universal Acceptance of domain names and email addresses with forward-thinking organizations like the AFTLD will promote Internet access for the diverse user base in Africa and help foster consumer choice and innovation," said Sarmad Hussain, ICANN Senior Director of IDN and UA Programs. "We look forward to working with the African community and launching similar efforts with other organizations committed to helping make UA a reality, globally."

The new joint training program will consist of monthly webinars starting in December 2021. The online sessions, delivered by leading industry experts and practitioners, will address various UA and IDN-related topics each targeted at relevant regional audiences including policymakers, technical administrators, ccTLD managers, registrars and their resellers, and local regulators and businesses.

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