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Liaison statement
Liaison Statement from the IAB to the ICANN Board on Technical Use of Domain Names

Additional information about IETF liaison relationships is available on the IETF webpage and the Internet Architecture Board liaison webpage.
State Posted
Submitted Date 2014-09-15
From Group IAB
From Contact Russ Housley
To Contacts
Cc Jonne Soininen <>
The IAB Chair <>
The IAB <>
The IAB Executive Director <>
Purpose For information
Attachments (None)
Dear colleagues,

We are writing this note in order to share with you some work in the
IETF regarding domain names for "technical use," as described in RFC

In RFC 2860 ("Memorandum of Understanding Concerning the Technical
Work of the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority," June 2000), the IAB
acknowledged the authority of ICANN for policies relating to the
assignment of domain names, but retained authority over "assignments
of domain names for technical use" (Section 4.3, pg 2):

> 4.3. Two particular assigned spaces present policy issues in addition
> to the technical considerations specified by the IETF: the assignment
> of domain names, and the assignment of IP address blocks. These
> policy issues are outside the scope of this MOU.
> Note that (a) assignments of domain names for technical uses (such as
> domain names for inverse DNS lookup), (b) assignments of specialised
> address blocks (such as multicast or anycast blocks), and (c)
> experimental assignments are not considered to be policy issues, and
> shall remain subject to the provisions of this Section 4.

In order to support appropriate technical use of domain names in the
context of its protocol development work, the IETF approved RFC 6761
("Special-Use Domain Names," February 2013). As directed, IANA
established and populated a registry for such special-use names

Recently, several requests have come to the IETF for names to be added
to the special-use domain names registry

Discussion of these requests under the process established in RFC 6761
has revealed difficulties in applying its guidelines in practice.
Under its current charter, the DNSOP working group in the IETF is
responsible to review and clarify the overlap between (among other
things) the special names registry from RFC 6761 and the public DNS
root. This could include consideration of the problem of existing name
collisions, provision of additional guidelines, or further
modification to the process in RFC 6761 to reduce the potential for
collisions in the future. Any changes are to be kept within the
constraints of RFC 2860 (or any future modification to RFC 2860).

All such discussion and any modification will be open and transparent
to participation by interested parties, in accordance with established
IETF processes. We invite participation of interested parties,
including members of the ICANN community, in this work.

On behalf of the IAB,
Russ Housley
IAB Chair