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APTLD84 Communique

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The 84th APTLD Members Meeting was held in Seoul, Republic of Korea, on 18-21 September 2023. Hosted by KISA, a founding APTLD Member, the Meeting gathered over 200 Members and guests, including over 130 on-site participants representing over 30 economies across Asia Pacific, as well as Europe and the Americas. In addition, the community was pleased to welcome partner organizations and initiatives from the region, including APNIC, APRALO, APrIGF, among others, as well as ccNSO, ICANN, and LACTLD as a sister Regional Organization.

APTLD84 was a groundbreaking Meeting in terms of the number of sponsors, which is why the organizers, for the first time ever, have introduced sponsorship tiers, with CentralNic Registry and GoDaddy Registry becoming Headline Sponsors, while Verisign and RNIDS (.RS/.СРБ) – Gold Sponsors, APNIC and ICANN – Silver Sponsors, and Gransy, Datacom Ltd (.MN/.MН), as well as local registrars WHOIS and Gabia Ltd – Bronze Sponsors. Notably, CentralNic also co-sponsored the Networking Day, while GoDaddy –the Conference Days, and the prizes for an updated DNS Defender online game, among other activities.

As well, in parallel with the training sessions, Members’ leaders were holding, for the first time ever, a High-Level Meeting to discuss and support an “Internet for All” policy statement. Proposed by KISA and drafted by a dedicated Members Working Group, the document underwent all the stages of preparation as prescribed by the APTLD’s Policy Development Process, and it is envisaged that it should further be supported by the Membership to become their pledge to the regional and global communities. It is noteworthy that a number of I* organizations that attended the High-Level Meeting as observers also voiced their support to the document thereby underscoring the APTLD community’s leading role in advocating a robust Internet Governance agenda for the Asia Pacific and beyond.

Following a well-established tradition, the APTLD84 agenda was developed by the Members Standing Meeting Program Committee and featured a traditional pre-meeting Training Day, which was held on-site. For the first time ever, the Training Day featured 4 classes to cover technical, as well as administrative, and even self-improvement topics, delivered by experts from Gransy, RNIDS, and Dr. Bonnie Chun, a community veteran, respectively.

APTLD84 welcomed 6 Fellows from Bahrain, Bangladesh, Jordan, Laos, Uzbekistan and Tuvalu, of whom 5 were first-time Fellows. Notably, for the first time ever, two Fellows opted for the session moderator role and performed it enthusiastically and quite professionally.

Another novelty became a special invitation to ex-Board Chairs to contribute to the Meeting, and the community veterans moderated 3 sessions thereby ensuring that the Moderator cohort was a perfect blend of youth and maturity.

To meet the local community’s demand for an adequate access to the Members’ expertise, APTLD84 featured the simultaneous English-Korean interpretation and was streamed live onto a dedicated virtual event platform, thereby enabling a meaningful remote participation for the online audience throughout both days of the event.

The Meeting was once again conducted in the traditional 2-track mode, which enabled the community to discuss both non-technical (policy, administrative, marketing, and Internet Governance) matters and technical ones. A number of sessions were once again conducted in a panel discussion format, while a host-sponsored session on cybersecurity for the first time ever was conducted in the closed format and for APTLD Members only, and was not livestreamed. Also, during the Meeting, the attendees were offered a number of online polls to measure the temperature in the room and a dynamic of perception of debated matters. Notably, the local community’s proactive participation added to the multistakeholder- based nature of the Meeting with the Korean academia, technical community and business contributing to a number of sessions.

The first day of the Meeting was crowned by a Gala dinner at which Members celebrated the 25th anniversary of APTLD. Hosted by KISA, and co-sponsored by CentralNic Registry, Go Daddy Registry and Verisign, the dinner became a showcase of the community’s high spirit and commitment to APTLD, and a number of Members, including KISA, CNNIC, HKIRC, hoster.by, as well as all the sponsors, were awarded unique Certificates of Appreciation which were designed and crafted specifically for the occasion.

During the gala night, APTLD premiered a unique documentary movie – co-produced by RNIDS and co-sponsored by GoDaddy Registry, it highlighted the Association’s roots and history to date.

At the end of the gala, Ms. Bonnie Chun and Messrs. Choon Sai Lim, Jonathan Shea, Keith Davidson, Kilnam Chon and Peter Dengate Thrush were named APTLD Patrons and received respective certificates and unique APTLD Patron awards.

At the closure of the Meeting, the community was briefed on the High-Level Meeting outcomes and a subsequent course of action; APTLD84 Fellows shared their immediate impressions and takeaways from the Meeting; and a new destination for the 85th APTLD Meeting in February 2024, namely, Candolim, Goa (India) was unveiled along with the inauguration of the Meeting agenda already uploaded on a dedicated website, which has now migrated on an innovative platform that should enable APTLD to more efficiently manage preparations for the event, as well as its livestreaming, while allowing significant economies of scale.

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