ICANN

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The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN, pronounced /ˈaɪkæn/ EYE-kan) is a non-profit corporation headquartered in Marina del Rey, California, United States that was created on September 18, 1998, and incorporated on September 30, 1998[1] to oversee a number of Internet-related tasks previously performed directly on behalf of the U.S. government by other organizations, notably the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA).

ICANN is responsible for managing the Internet Protocol address spaces (IPv4 and IPv6) and assignment of address blocks to regional Internet registries, for maintaining registries of Internet protocol identifiers, and for the management of the top-level domain name space (DNS root zone), which includes the operation of root nameservers. Most visibly, much of its work has concerned the introduction of new generic top-level domains (TLDs). The technical work of ICANN is referred to as the IANA function.

ICANN's primary principles of operation have been described as helping preserve the operational stability of the Internet; to promote competition; to achieve broad representation of global Internet community; and to develop policies appropriate to its mission through bottom-up, consensus-based processes.[2]

On September 29, 2006, ICANN signed a new agreement with the United States Department of Commerce (DOC) that moves the private organization towards full management of the Internet's system of centrally coordinated identifiers through the multi-stakeholder model of consultation that ICANN represents.[3]

Contents

History

The original mandate for ICANN came from the United States government, spanning the presidential administrations of both Bill Clinton and George W. Bush. On January 30, 1998, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), an agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce, issued for comment, "A Proposal to Improve the Technical Management of Internet Names and Addresses." The proposed rule making, or "Green Paper", was published in the Federal Register on February 20, 1998, providing opportunity for public comment. NTIA received more than 650 comments as of March 23, 1998, when the comment period closed.[citation needed]

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