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The 69th ICANN meeting will be held virtually

Thursday, July 16, 2020

Big disappointment for the German domain community. The meeting planned in Hamburg in October of this year was long awaited, as the last ICANN meeting in Germany took place in Berlin in 1999.
Previously, ICANN67, originally in Cancun, Mexico, and ICANN68, planned in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, already took place online as a Virtual Public Meeting as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Now, based on the recommendations of the WHO, the ICANN Board of Directors has decided to hold the ICANN69 Annual General Meeting (AGM) from October 17th to 22nd, 2020, in the same format as well. Unfortunately, it is not yet known if and when an ICANN meeting will take place in Hamburg or Germany. 

ICANN also announced that the health and safety of its community, as well as that of its Board of Directors and all employees, is always a top priority. And while progress has been made in mitigating the effects of COVID-19, there are still several obstacles and uncertainties that prevent the holding of large international meetings, such as ICANN's public meetings. These include the continuing restrictions on international travel, limited flight availability, visa procurement problems, distance requirements, risks to the local host community, and the possibility of a second wave that could lead to renewed suspensions.

The Board encouraged the ICANN organization to consult with the ICANN community on best practices and to use the experience of the previous two Virtual Public Meetings to make improvements for the virtual meeting in the fall. This should enable the expected results of an ICANN AGM to be met and support the ongoing policy advice and development work of the community even without a face-to-face meeting. The committee is aware of the importance of personal exchange and looks forward to returning to ICANN's public meetings on site. It is currently planned to hold ICANN70 in Cancun, Mexico, and ICANN71 in The Hague, Netherlands.

Those interested in participating in ICANN69 will need to register despite the change in format. An announcement will be published on as soon as the registration is open.

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, short ICANN, is the registry for names and addresses on the Internet and was founded in 1998 as a non-profit organization. Its mission is to contribute to a stable, secure and unified global Internet. To this end, several meetings are held annually at different locations with up to 3000 international participants, at which the Internet and domain community discusses the future of the Internet.

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