IAB Statement on Identifiers and Unicode 7.0.0

Shawn Steele Shawn.Steele at microsoft.com
Wed Jan 28 02:13:28 CET 2015

> I also wonder why you think the statement is "overkill".  We have some cases that we definitely believe are going to be troublesome, and we recommend that people avoid using them in new identifiers until that issue is sorted out.  We have a recommendation that we not make the structural problem in IDNA worse.  And we exhort the IETF to do something.  Where's the overkill?

The WG was already discussing it :)  

It focuses on edge cases of confusable characters.  These are a very small part of the potential for confusion in IDNA.  

The key part is perhaps: "The IAB does not dispute the reasoning that the Unicode Technical Committee uses for such determinations (neither is the IAB qualified to dispute that reasoning). The IAB’s sole concern in this case is whether the correct choice of character will be discernible in the context of identifiers."

Certainly having identifiers that are consistent is good, however we already have PVALID characters that are confusing, and they don't even have to look exactly the same.  (naïve/naive for example, or fußball/fussball).  Drilling down on a few specific characters seems to me to ignore the bigger problem of confusable identifiers.  IMO if the wider problem was addressed, then these cases would be fairly uninteresting.  It's like we can't see the forest for all the trees.


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