Registered sgn-* tags

Doug Ewell dewell at
Tue Jul 13 19:18:48 CEST 2004

Peter Constable <petercon at microsoft dot com> wrote:

>> What about sgn-US?  This can be generated, not only under the new RFC
>> 3066bis mechanism, but even under the old RFC 3066 language-country
>> mechanism.  In either case, the generative meaning of sgn-US would
>> logically be "Sign Languages as used in the United States."  That's
>> what you get when you concatenate the meaning of "sgn" and the
>> meaning of "US".
> But that is not the registered semantics for "sgn-US", and considering
> that there are at least three distinct signed languages associated
> with the US, there is no choice but to grandfather the registered tag
> "sgn-US". We could deprecate it and register an atomic subtag for ASL
> (which is what I argued for three years ago, obviously
> unsuccessfully), but the registered semantics of "sgn-US" would still
> have to be documented.

Then there will need to be a change in RFC 3066bis, to the effect that
tags that were previously registered under RFC 3066 with the intent of
"registering information about" the tag (second paragraph of Section 3),
and can now (or could then) be composed from valid subtags, are not
necessarily superseded, but maintain their existing informative
registration.  (Sorry for the baroque sentence.)

That would allow sgn-US, which can be composed from sgn + US under both
RFC 3066 and RFC 3066bis, to be registered as meaning specifically
"American Sign Language."

I don't know whether this affects only Appendix C or other aspects of
the draft, including the ABNF.

-Doug Ewell
 Fullerton, California

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