Frequently Asked Questions

How do I become a ccNSO member?

You need to fill in and submit this web application form.

The application will then be reviewed and voted upon by the ccNSO Council.

The ccNSO Secretariat will keep you informed on the process once the form has been submitted.

Does membership cost anything?  


While the ICANN bylaws (Article IX, section 7.3) allow for a mechanism to recover ccNSO operating costs, members have currently decided that there shall be no membership fee.

What are the benefits of a ccNSO membership for my ccTLD?

The ccNSO offers a unique platform for worldwide exchange of information and best practices between ccTLDs.

It also cooperates closely with all regional organisations as well as other relevant internet bodies and actors and offers excellent networking opportunities for the participants.

Being a member of the ccNSO allows you to make your voice heard in the ICANN community. Your ccTLD can actively take part in policy development processes for ccTLDs and will always have a vote on the policies developed by the ccNSO.

You can also participate in various topical ccNSO working groups, which influence the work and direction of ccTLDs in general. The ccNSO is also a platform to share experiences and information with other entities in the ICANN context such as the Governmental Advisory Committee (GAC), Generic Names Supporting Organisation (GNSO) and Security and Stability Advisory Committee (SSAC).

You will also have a vote in the elections of the two ICANN board seats as well as a vote to elect members of the ccNSO Council. You may also candidate to both positions.

Why is it important to participate in the ccNSO?

The ccNSO provides you with a unique platform where you can share information and experiences with ccTLDs from other countries. The ccNSO not only makes your voice heard on a global level, but also allows you to propose and participate in activities which you and your peers consider being important.

Furthermore, the ccNSO gives you the opportunity to show your commitment to and participate in the bottom-up, multi-stakeholder model of the ICANN structure.

How can I influence ICANN policies through the ccNSO?

The ccNSO develops recommendations to the ICANN board on policies concerning ccTLD operators. By actively taking part in the work of the ccNSO, your opinion will be heard, and as a member of the ccNSO you participate in the final vote on any recommendation of the ccNSO to the ICANN Board.

How can I be appointed or elected to be part of the ccNSO Council?

There are nominations to the ccNSO Council once a year. One candidate per geographic region needs to be appointed by the members of the ccNSO in that region.

If you are working for a ccTLD and wish to be part of the ccNSO Council, you need to be nominated and seconded by another ccTLD registry in your region. You can also nominate yourself; however, you then need to be seconded by another registry from your region.

Only ccNSO members can be nominated and seconded.

Three seats of the ccNSO are also filled by the NomCom, one seat per year needs to be renewed. The NomCom is striving for filling these seats with people from other business-perspectives than ccTLDs. Should you wish to be considered as a candidate by the NomCom, please visit this page.

Do I have to pay to attend ICANN-ccNSO meetings?

The meetings themselves are free of charge. However, travel and hotel costs need to be covered by participants themselves.

There are possibilities to receive travel funding through ICANN’s fellowship programme and the ccNSO is also providing some travel support for a small set of ccNSO participants who are actively participating in the work of the ccNSO.

Please, contact the ccNSO Secretariat at for more information.

Do I have to attend ccNSO meetings? Is there remote participation in the ccNSO? E-mail lists to follow?

There is one ccNSO members email list where important material is posted. The members are also free to discuss on the list.

It then depends on how involved you would like to be in the ccNSO’s day-to-day work. The ccNSO has several working groups. Each WG has its own email lists and sometimes work through telephone conferences. The ccNSO Council also has their own email list and meets once a month on a telephone conference.

The physical meetings are usually broadcasted both by audio- and webcasts. Remote participants can also post questions by an online chat forum.

Information about the broadcasting is sent out prior to the meeting on the available ccTLD email lists and is posted at

Are ccNSO discussions translated into different languages?

Not at the moment. Only major papers are translated into the official UN languages.

Are there any implications of the membership of the ccNSO for my ccTLD?

Through your membership of the ccNSO you agree to abide to the policies developed and recommended to the ICANN Board by the ccNSO.

What happens if everyone agrees to a policy, but I don’t?

If a policy would force the ccTLD manager to breach national law, national law always remains paramount.

If a policy would force the ccTLD to impinge local custom, religion or public policy, that ccTLD may provide a statement that it cannot implement the policy and that non-implementation will not impair DNS operations or interoperability.

Any ccNSO member may withdraw its membership at any time in writing (see also next question).

What are the implications if I withdraw membership?

None. The ICANN bylaws clearly state that membership or none membership of the ccNSO has no impact on the aspects of the relationship with ICANN membership.

If I sign an ICANN Accountability Framework or Exchange of Letters, am I automatically a member of the ccNSO?

No. The ICANN bylaws clearly state that ccNSO membership is neither linked to Accountability Frameworks/Exchange of Letters, nor the other way around. Accountability Frameworks or Exchange of Letters deal with other aspects of the relationship between a ccTLD manager and ICANN than membership of the ccNSO.

I want to register a domain directly under .xy, but my ccTLD doesn’t let me. Can you help?

The way, in which you can register domains under a country code, is decided on a local level. The ccNSO does not deal with local issues, nor with issues related to an individual ccTLD.

Please contact your top-level domain registry directly for further information. A list of all top-level domain operators and their contact details is available here.

I would like to create a new top-level domain, such as “.newtopleveldomain” – what do I do?

According to the current policy, only two letter codes on the ISO 3166-1 list are eligible to be assigned as a country code Top Level Domain. This implies that new country code Top Level Domains cannot be created at will.

If you are interested in creating a new generic top-level domain (gTLD), please click here for further information.