Enabling the Next Billion Users through Universal Acceptance

12 November 2015 - A Workshop on Other in João Pessoa, Brazil


The support of internationalized domain names brings the Internet a huge step closer to fulfilling its promise of inclusiveness and diversity, facilitating the sharing of knowledge globally and promising connectivity to the next billion new Internet users. For those in under-served regions, such capabilities would remove yet another barrier in information access by enabling communication in native languages.

But that promise of inclusiveness and diversity is only partially fulfilled. Currently, treatment of internationalized domain names and email addresses is inconsistent across systems, including rejection. This is part of a class of issues commonly referred to as “Universal Acceptance.” 

This roundtable will bring attention to lack of Universal Acceptance, discuss necessary systemic changes, and facilitate stakeholder collaboration to develop meaningful solutions. 

Stakeholders with practical experience in Universal Acceptance from different parts of the world have accepted invitations to participate, including end users, systems administrators and developers, and organizations looking to expand their Internet reach globally. The IGF is an excellent place for this multi-stakeholder exchange to better understand the scope of the issues and more effective means for collaboration in developing solutions that work. 

Our Roundtable format is designed to engender attendee participation in person and online. Several speakers will participate online rather than in-person and the workshop moderator will encourage online participation prior to the meeting using social media. Topic leaders will: provide examples for attendees to type into their browsers, share solutions, and solicit audience discussion to form a communications plan. “Light bulbs will go on.”

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