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American organizations


An organization seeking registration should contact ANSI to obtain a "Request for registration" application form (see Organization name registration). In order to recover costs, ANSI charges a registration fee for this service (see fee schedule)

From Chapter 5 of the book "Open Systems Networking. TCP/IP and OSI" (1993) by D.M. Piscitello and A.L. Chapin:
ANSI operates a registration authority that assigns organization names in two forms:
  • an alphanumeric form, which may consist of from 1 to 100 characters chosen from a specified character set (defined as registration number 102, the Teletex Set of Primary Graphic Characters, of the ISO International Register of Character Sets to Be Used with Escape Sequences, plus the space character), and
  • a numeric form, which consists of a positive decimal integer greater than or equal to 113,527 and less than 16 million. [Note: Child OID gov(101) is an exception to this rule. it is used for example in IETF RFC 2876.]

Note: Many people have wondered why ANSI decided to begin the assignment of numeric organization names at the non-intuitive value "113,527," which is not, among other things, a power of 2 (or any other interesting number). Realizing that they had to specify some value as the starting point (and hoping to avoid conferring any special cachet on the recipients of the first few numbers by starting at, say "1"), the members of the U.S. registration authority committee were about to pick a "logical" number ("1,000," perhaps, or "2,048") when Jack Veenstra, the Chairman of the committee, shouted "113,527!" -- which was promptly dubbed the "Veenstra constant" and written into the registration authority procedures. Later, the members of the committee arranged for AT&T (Veenstra's employer) to receive the numeric organization name "113,527" in Jack's honor. [...]

Until [1991], the U.S. name-registration authority conducted its business under the {iso(1) member-body(2) us(840)} arc, registering names for ANSI standards, private organizations with U.S. national standing, and the names of U.S. states and "state equivalents." In 1991, however, changes in the registration authority procedures standard ISO/IEC 9834 | Rec. ITU-T X.660 invalidated this procedure; they required that private organization names with national standing be registered under {joint-iso-itu-t(2) country(16) us(840)} arc. This had two immediate, significant consequences: organization names already registered under the {1 2 840} arc were suddenly "homeless", and policy control over the assignment names -- previously vested solely in ANSI under the old rules -- became the joint responsibility of ANSI and the U.S. Department of State (which is the official US representative in the ITU-T arena).

The existing register of private organization names has moved, intact, from the {1 2 840} arc to the {2 16 840 1} arc, without invalidating existing names (such as organization identifiers and application entity titles) that may already have been constructed using the {1 2 840} prefix; in effect, two equivalent prefixes will exist (in perpetuity) for currently registered organization names. New registrations will be made only under the new {2 16 840 1} arc, and organizations possessed of an "old" registration will be encouraged (but not required) to construct no new identifiers under the {1 2 840} arc. [...]

Since the rule change covers only "private organization names with national standing," the existing mechanism for registering the names of American national standards under the {1 2 840} arc is unaffected and will remain in place.

Current Registration Authority    


Henry Cheung

To contact the registration authority, replace "&" by "@" in the email address


Registration Coordinator
ANSI (American National Standards Institute)
25 West 43rd Street
New York, NY 10036
United States of America


+1 212 642 4975 
Fax: +1 212 398 0023

Last update:

1 August 2011

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