The GAC regularly considers a broad range of public policy issues impacting the DNS and other matters regarding the functions of ICANN. This work can result in consensus advice for the ICANN Board or public comment guidance to the ICANN community. This part of the website shares information related to those ongoing topics and activities.
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Most TLDs with three or more characters are referred to as "generic" TLDs, or "gTLDs". They can be subdivided into two types, "sponsored" TLDs (sTLDs) and "unsponsored TLDs (uTLDs), as described in more detail below.
In the 1980s, seven gTLDs (.com, .edu, .gov, .int, .mil, .net, and .org) were created. Domain names may be registered in three of these (.com, .net, and .org) without restriction; the other four have limited purposes.
Over the next twelve years, various discussions occurred concerning additional gTLDs, leading to the selection in November 2000 of seven new TLDs for introduction. These were introduced in 2001 and 2002. Four of the new TLDs (.biz, .info, .name, and .pro) are unsponsored. The other three new TLDs (.aero, .coop, and .museum) are sponsored.
Generally speaking, an unsponsoredTLDoperates under policies established by the global Internet community directly through theICANNprocess, while a sponsoredTLDis a specializedTLDthat has a sponsor representing the narrower community that is most affected by theTLD. The sponsor thus carries out delegated policy-formulation responsibilities over many matters concerning theTLD.
A Sponsor is an organization to which is delegated some defined ongoing policy-formulation authority regarding the manner in which a particular sponsoredTLDis operated. The sponsoredTLDhas a Charter, which defines the purpose for which the sponsoredTLDhas been created and will be operated. The Sponsor is responsible for developing policies on the delegated topics so that theTLDis operated for the benefit of a defined group of stakeholders, known as the SponsoredTLDCommunity, that are most directly interested in the operation of theTLD. The Sponsor also is responsible for selecting the registry operator and to varying degrees for establishing the roles played by registrars and their relationship with the registry operator. The Sponsor must exercise its delegated authority according to fairness standards and in a manner that is representative of the SponsoredTLDCommunity.
A note about our privacy policies and terms of service:
We have updated our privacy policies and certain website terms of service to provide greater transparency,
promote simplification, and align with recent changes in privacy laws applicable to us.