Tex Texin tex at i18nguy.com
Sun Jun 15 15:42:01 CEST 2003

Thanks Peter.

Yes, es-americas was different in that it was the minimal set or words that
was acceptable in all spanish markets.
OED seems to be the superset of words and spellings that are used in any
english-speaking market.

I understand the respect and admiration people have for OED's large and
lengthy effort. However, I don't see that honoring OED with a tag is
appropriate, if OED is not in fact defining some language.
It seems it is not defining British English, as it is inclusive of American,
Australian, and others.
Also, were I to use OED as a guide, I could successfuly mix spellings from
multiple english-speaking parts of the world, which no one part of the world
would agree I was spelling consistently correctly.

I am not a linguist, and will be happy to come to understand why I am wrong,
but at the moment I don't think this tag should be registered. I ask that
others separate what I suspect is reverence for OED's good work, from the
needs of the tag, and determine what problem this tag helps resolve.

As an example, Oxford's preference for "ize", cited in the registration, might
be a logical argument for using that form based on its greek origin, but
Oxford may not at all be speaking for the British or any other market in
particular in prescribing the preference. So which software would ever be
localized using OED, if in fact no one market follows its orthography?
Or alternatively, if I create an en-OED localization, which market will use it
and accept it as consistent and representative of their language or desirable
to use? It seems the answer is none. Even Klingon has a bigger following. ;-)


Peter_Constable at sil.org wrote:
> Tex Texin wrote on 06/15/2003 02:53:30 AM:
> > I am a little ignorant here, so perhaps someone will enlighten me.
> >
> > I'll have to go to a library and look at an OED, but in the interim,I
> went to
> > their web site. The OED claims to represent English from all over the
> world...
> > So I am not sure where the "GB" applies. This seems to be the English
> language
> > equivalent of es-americas.
> es-americas was a little different since it implied constraints on Spanish
> particularly in relation to vocabulary.
> > So I am a little confused by the references to gb, au, us versions or
> > en-xx-oed and wonder why OED isn't simply considered a reference for
> > validating whether text is "en" rather than being proposed as a more
> specific
> > variant.
> I think we do need to revisit what the original intent was before going
> further. I'll copy the original request here:
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
> Name of requester          : Michael Everson
> E-mail address of requester: everson at evertype.com
> Tag to be registered       : en-GB-oxford
> English name of language   : English, Oxford orthography
> Native name of language (transcribed into ASCII): English, Oxford
> orthography
> Reference to published description of the language (book or article):
> Although it is widely believed that en-US and en-GB differ in that
> the former spells "color" and "civilize" and the latter spells
> "colour" and "civilise", in fact this is not entirely the case.
> Oxford spelling prefers the spellings "colour" and "civilize". Oxford
> prefers -ize because this is the etymological spelling (from Greek
> -izein).
> "The form -ize has been in use in English since the 16th century;
> although it is widely used in American English, it is not an
> Americanism. The alternative spelling -ise (reflecting a French
> influence) is in common use, especially in British English."
> References:
> Pearsall, Judy, ed. 2001. The New Oxford Dictionary of English.
> Oxford: Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-860441-6
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
> I think there has been consensus to use OED rather than Oxford;
> accordingly, it would probably make sense that the English name be
> "English, OED orthography". Also, I think it would be better to refer to
> spelling instead of orthography, so "English, OED spelling". And since the
> spelling conventions are not limited to GB english, we'd probably want
> en-oed.
> If we felt the spelling conventions could be applied to regional dialects
> (with vocab differences), we might want to consider registering some other
> tags as well: en-GB-oed, en-CA-oed, en-AU-OED, etc.; perhaps even
> en-US-oed (recall the German tags include de-1901, de-DE-1901, de-CH-1901,
> etc.).
> The question I have, though, is whether the reference provided actually
> defines (even ostensivly) the intended spelling conventions. For instance,
> Michael told us that this publication has "colorize" as the citation form
> rather than "colourize". This creates ambiguity: is the en-oed spelling
> "colorize" or "colourize"?
> > As an aside it would be nice if there was a directory with the
> applications
> > that are under consideration somewhere.
> > Similar to the directory for the approved registrations.
> Not a bad idea.
> - Peter
> ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
> Peter Constable
> Non-Roman Script Initiative, SIL International
> 7500 W. Camp Wisdom Rd., Dallas, TX 75236, USA
> Tel: +1 972 708 7485
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Tex Texin   cell: +1 781 789 1898   mailto:Tex at XenCraft.com
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