John Cowan jcowan at
Fri Apr 11 13:40:14 CEST 2003

Mark Davis scripsit:

> Is there a distinction in orthography between each pair of the following?
> Unknown, yet 3066 permits all of them, since it is better to be safe than
> sorry.

[list of all possible national Englishes snipped]

Without attempting to undermine your point, IMHO the following list is the
outer limit of plausibility:

en-AG en-AI en-AS en-AU en-BB en-BM en-BN en-BS en-BW en-BZ en-CA en-CK
en-CM en-DM en-ER en-ET en-FJ en-FK en-FM en-GB en-GD en-GH en-GI en-GM
en-GU en-GY en-IE en-IL en-IO en-JM en-KE en-KI en-KN en-KY en-LC en-LR
en-LS en-MP en-MS en-MT en-MU en-MW en-NA en-NF en-NG en-NR en-NU en-NZ
en-PG en-PH en-PK en-PN en-PR en-PW en-RW en-SB en-SC en-SG en-SH en-SL
en-SO en-SZ en-TC en-TK en-TO en-TT en-UG en-US en-VC en-VG en-VI en-VU
en-WS en-ZA en-ZM en-ZW

These are the countries in which English is an official or national
language (according to the Ethnologue), and therefore which might
conceivably legislate on the subject.

> for az-*: AZ, IR, ...

This is the point you weren't making before: that there is a difference
between Azeri (in the same script) in Azerbaycan and in Iran.

> which is why a generative mechanism is much simpler.

So it is.  But what we are talking about here is what you need *before* a
generative mechanism is in place.  Consider, say, Chiru aka Chhori, which
under my current proposal would be labeled sit-cdf.  If this language
were commercially important, it would be worthwhile registering this tag.
("sit" is ISO 639-2 for "Sino-Tibetan (other)".)  Furthermore, Chiru
can be written in Latin or Bengali, so sit-cdf-latn and sit-cdf-beng
are also useful registrations.

But given that there is no significant body of Chiru speakers outside
India, do you also *need* to register sit-cdf-in, sit-cdf-latn-in,
and sit-cdf-beng-in for short-term purposes (i.e. until 3066bis comes out)?

He made the Legislature meet at one-horse       John Cowan
tank-towns out in the alfalfa belt, so that     jcowan at
hardly nobody could get there and most of
the leaders would stay home and let him go
to work and do things as he pleased.    --Mencken, _Declaration of Independence_

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