CNNIC: Thriving after 20 Years of Efforts, Serving as Cornerstone of the Internet
2017/06/08 10:29author:
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   With the registration volume ranked No.1 among all the ccTLDs, .CN being the most secure domain name in the world
  Leading the standards formulation in industry and promoting the delegation of .中国, .公司 and .网络 into the root zone of the Internet
  Building the China Internet Museum and faithfully recording the development history of China’s Internet
  Setting up the National Engineering Lab for Naming and Addressing, with its technology leading the world 
  Successively releasing the Statistical Reports on Internet Development in China for 39 times and witnessing the industrial development in the past two decades

In June 1997, the China Internet Network Information Center (abbreviated as CNNIC) was set up. The People’s Daily published an article, saying that “The establishment of China Internet Network Information Center marks that the development, management, operation and service of China’s Internet has got on a more orderly, improved and standardized track, and thus is a major event in the development of China’s Internet.” 23 years after the birth of China’s Internet and the return back to China of the .CN national top-level domain, CNNIC celebrates its 20th birthday. CNNIC thrives after 20 years of efforts, and serves as the backbone of the Internet. 

An important constructor, operator, administrator and innovator of crucial information infrastructure of the Internet

Rich hanging fruits depend on the roots deep in the earth. At the inception of CNNIC, the registration volume of .CN was about 1000, and at the end of 2015 the volume of .CN exceeded that of .DE in German, ranking No.1 among all the ccTLDs in the world. From the release of RFC 3743 in 2004, to the delegation of the .中国 ccTLD into the DNS in June 2010, and to the delegation of the .公司 and .网络 gTLDs into the DNS in 2014, CNNIC continuously promoted the application of Chinese domain names in domestic and foreign organizations. At first CNNIC started its operation in a “like-a-bar” modest computing room, later several thousands of service devices collaboratively provided high-quality service for the globe, and recently the service availability of .CN was improved to 100%. With the vision of “the world-class Internet network information center”, CNNIC ensures the security of our national network and promotes the orderly development of the industry, creating a safe, stable and efficient fundamental resources environment for China’s Internet. In October 2015, CNNIC became the only organization approved by ICANN in the world to serve as the emergency back-end registry operator (EBERO), data escrow agent (DEA), trademark clearinghouse (TMCH) and third-party provider of registrar data escrow services (RDE TPP) simultaneously. In the past 20 years, in addition to the proactive work in the domain name field, in the IP address allocation field CNNIC obtained large amount of IP address strategic resources for China, contributing to the construction of “Digital China” and the innovative development of network economy. Pursuing innovation in the field of Internet fundamental technology, CNNIC led the establishment of the National Engineering Lab for Naming and Addressing (NATLab), constructed the big data platform for Internet fundamental resources, developed a series of world-leading SDNS software and hardware systems, promoted the formulation of ten IETF standards, and led the completion of main technological standards in the industry, accumulating strength for the next-generation fundamental resources development of China’s Internet. From follower to leader, the overall service system and technological innovation capability of CNNIC have reached the top level in the world. 

A witness of the development of China’s Internet and a pioneer of Internet governance research

As a professional organization conducting research on Internet development in China and focusing on the research on the development status of China’s Internet, CNNIC in the past 20 years successively released 39 Statistical Reports on Internet Development in China and published a few research reports on vertical and regional Internet development and on the online behavior of specific groups, with data being widely cited by organizations such as the United Nation and the International Telecommunication Union. In 2016, CNNIC issued the 1st Evaluation Report on National Informatization Development, supporting the research of our nation in both the fields of Internet and informatization. In the aspect of international Internet governance, since its inception CNNIC has fully participated in the international Internet governance on behalf of Chinese Internet community. Giving full play to its leader role in the technical community, CNNIC actively engaged in the construction of global Internet governance system, initiated the establishment of the Institute of Internet Governance Research (IGR) in China in 2013, which is dedicated to the study of Internet governance policies, participated in the IANA functions transition process, and promoted the globalization of ICANN. CNNIC has helped quite a few people to hold positions in international Internet-related organizations such as the World Economic Forum (WEF), the United Nations Internet Governance Forum (IGF), the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), the Internet Society (ISOC), the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), the Asia-Pacific Network Information Center (APNIC) and the Asia-Pacific Top-level Domain Association (APTLD). CNNIC has invited many international organizations and community leaders to conduct extensive exchange in China, and has successively hosted the ICANN meetings in Shanghai and in Beijing, the IETF meeting in Beijing, the World Internet Conference and so on. CNNIC actively introduces Chinese philosophy and development experience to the world, and makes the voice heard on various occasions on behalf of China and the Asia-Pacific community. CNNIC has been widely recognized as the core think-tank with global impacts in the field of Internet development and governance in China. 

Tolstoy said, “History is the biography of nations and man”. As a witness and recorder of the Internet development in China, CNNIC shoulders the mission and historical responsibility of being the driving force of the history and culture of China’s Internet in a new era. In December 2015, supported by founders of China’s Internet and all social circles, the online cultural exchange and sharing platform initiated by CNNIC – “China Internet Museum” – was opened, and in the “Light of the Internet” exposition was demonstrated and reported to President Xi Jinping about the development of the Digital Pavilion of China’s Internet Museum. 

We should stay connected with the past and be enlightened for the future. In the new era, CNNIC is committed to becoming a supporting organization for the management of Internet fundamental resources in China, a high-end think-tank for the Internet development and governance and an open platform for Internet innovation and cooperation. Keeping the original intention in mind, CNNIC will get deeply involved in the national big data strategy and the “Internet +” action plan while heading forward bravely and diligently for our national cyberpower strategy. 
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