Who Is ICANN?
Created in the fall of 1998,
ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned
Names and Numbers) is a private international organization
authorized by the U.S. Department of Commerce
to move domain registration from a monopolistic to a competitive
environment by accrediting private companies to become domain
registrars. This task was initiated at the end of 1999. With
competition now successfully introduced to the domain registration
industry, ICANN works to administer policy for the Internet
name and address system in a global environment.
ICANN administers top-level
domains (TLDs) including .com, .net, .org, .edu, .gov,
.mil, and .int. The organization will also administer the
seven recently announced TLDs including .biz, .pro, .aero,
.coop, .info, .museum, and .name. Other TLDs, often referred
to as country codes or ccTLDs, include .us (United States),
.fr (France), and .cn (China). There are 240 ccTLDs worldwide,
each administered by its own registry separate from ICANN.
ICANN's board includes nineteen directors and
nine elected at-large directors. Each director and at-large
director serves a one-year term and is elected by an at-large
For more information about ICANN,
please visit www.icann.org.