ISO 3166 (country codes) Maintenance Agency Web pages move

Mark Crispin MRC@CAC.Washington.EDU
Tue, 26 Feb 2002 08:37:53 -0800 (PST)

On Tue, 26 Feb 2002 08:26:59 -0800, Doug Ewell wrote:
> Mark Crispin <MRC@CAC.Washington.EDU> wrote:
> >> Indeed, the only
> >> immediately obvious advantage of ROU is that it provides a better
> >> mnemonic code for the *French* name of the country, "Roumanie."
> > Unless it is to indicate that its nationals are Romanian and not Rom
> (a.k.a. gypsy).
> ISO 3166 is a standard for encoding country names, not ethnic groups.

You know that.  I know that.

But perhaps people who look at passports (which is apparently the major
application of the three letter codes) do not know that.

I can think of a number of three-letter codes which, although innocently
derived, would be sensitive if it's on someone's passport.  In the case of
Romanians and Gypsies, you have two very different peoples, each with a strong
sense of identity, who do not want to be confused with the other.