Internationalised Domain Names key to multilingualism online
Brussels, 24 September 2012 - Internationalised Domain Names are a vital part of the ecosystem necessary to foster the growth of local languages online, according to the EURid-UNESCO World Report on Internationalised Domain Names, an abstract of which is featured in the latest report by the Broadband Commission for Digital Development, “The State of Broadband 2012: Achieving Digital Inclusion for All”, published on 23 September 2012.
Internationalised Domain Names (IDNs) are domain names consisting of characters from non-Latin scripts, such as Cyrillic or Greek.
Online multilingualism, as well as the capacities of communities to create and share content in their local languages, are important drivers of the use of broadband infrastructure by the local population, which in turn will increase access to linguistically and culturally diverse content and provide new socio-economic development opportunities.
The uptake of IDNs worldwide has been lagging however. The EURid-UNESCO World Report on IDNs, which will be presented at the next Internet Governance Forum in Baku, Azerbaijan, reviews the general challenges to achieving universality for IDNs. It states that the technologies in place for using IDNs do not always provide a consistent and satisfactory experience for Internet users in several countries. The World Report lists a number of challenges that have to be overcome before full IDN uptake can be realised.
The 2012 World Report on IDNs explores the disparity in IDN deployment and concludes that language, culture and infrastructure factors on the one hand, and ccTLD factors on the other, particularly the presence of a local registrar base, combine to impact IDN take up in certain regions. The Report invites all interested parties to further cooperate in building a truly multilingual Internet.
For media information, please contact:
Megan Vosloo, Communications Officer Phone: 32 (0)2 401 3019 Email:
About the Broadband Commission
The Broadband Commission for Digital Development was established by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in response to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon’s call to step up efforts to meet the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Launched in May 2010, the Commission comprises government leaders from around the world and the top level representatives and leaders from relevant industries and international agencies and organizations concerned with development.
The Broadband Commission embraces a range of different perspectives in a multi-stakeholder approach to promoting the roll-out of broadband, and provides a fresh approach to UN and business engagement. To date, the Commission has published a number of high-level policy reports, as well as a number of best practices and case studies. This report is published by the
Commission on the occasion of the 2012 Meeting of the United Nations General Assembly in New York.
More information about the Commission is available at:
Download the full version of the State of Broadband report at:
The .eu domain ranks among the largest top-level domains in the world, connecting 500 million people in 27 EU countries to one Internet identity. More than 3.5 million .eu names have been registered since the domain opened for registration in 2005. Many companies and brands use a .eu website as a practical solution to convey a clear European identity and their business ambitions, including Fairtrade International, Foot Locker, Louis Vuitton, the MAN Group, Microsoft, Orangina and Toyota.
EURid is the not-for-profit organisation that operates the .eu top-level domain, following a tender process and appointment by the European Commission. EURid works with over 850 accredited registrars and provides support in the 23 official EU languages. EURid is registered by the EU Eco-Management and Audit Scheme (EMAS), which is an expression of EURid’s environmental commitment. With headquarters in Brussels (Belgium), EURid also has regional offices in Pisa (Italy), Prague (the Czech Republic) and Stockholm (Sweden). More information at: http://www.eurid.eu.