Four Kitchens has been a strategic digital partner for ICANN since 2011, when we migrated their existing site to Drupal transforming their original, static collection of pages into a multilingual, responsive Drupal 7 website. This involved a massive migration from static files to multilingual Drupal nodes with 0% link rot, as well as a responsive design that was fully tested with right-to-left (RTL) languages.

We’re pleased to announce that our work with ICANN continues, and it’s more important than ever. ICANN is an organization that does listen to the community, and the recent launch of their WHOIS Beta site is definitive proof.

Quick background on WHOIS

WHOIS is a protocol that searches and finds information related to who owns a certain domain on the internet. WHOIS has been around for a long time, since what would become the internet was still in its infancy back in the early 1980s. ICANN has been responsible for managing the WHOIS program for Top-Level Domains (TLDs) since 1999. The lay of the land since then has changed quite a bit. There are more TLDs now than there were back in 1999, plus new Global Top-Level Domains are coming soon. In an effort to improve WHOIS, ICANN assigned a Review Team to research, investigate, and make recommendations on how to make WHOIS better.

The WHOIS Review Team

In October of 2010, a Review Team was formed to conduct a study to review if WHOIS policy and implementation is “effective, meet the legitimate needs of law enforcement and promote consumer trust.” The Review Team found that WHOIS information tends to be hard to find, and suggested ICANN implement a centralized portal in which to house all of the WHOIS information available, from history and policies, to other historical documents.


WHOIS Phase I represents the first step in improving WHOIS. As part of this phase, ICANN, with the help of Four Kitchens, has launched a centralized portal where all definitive information about WHOIS can be found. This site is fully responsive, multilingual, and accommodates right to left languages.

What’s inside the box?

  • Forms to report data inaccuracies to ICANN.
  • A knowledge center that serves as an archive to find policies, documentation, meeting minutes, and historical WHOIS information.
  • A Q&A section where users can find answers to the most frequently asked questions about WHOIS, and learn about the protocol.

Take a look at the site for yourself:

Further reading