draft-phillips-langtags-08 script subtags and matching

Tex Texin tex at xencraft.com
Sun Jan 2 04:29:59 CET 2005

Peter Constable wrote:
> > bounces at alvestrand.no] On Behalf Of Tex Texin
> > Although the format of the tags is consistent, and the matching rules
> > unchanged, the behavior that users will see is indeed different...
> > Under RFC 3066, if I specify sr-CS I will have returned an sr-CS page
> if
> > it
> > exists.
> > Under RFC 3066bis, if I continue to specify sr-CS, not knowing that
> the
> > server
> > has begun using sr-Latn-CS, I will not have that page returned.
> The flaw in this logic is assuming that this is something that resulted
> specifically from this draft, or that is a problem the RFC should be
> able to solve. A tag "sr-Latn" or "sr-Latn-CS" could be registered under
> RFC 3066; in fact, the former is registered, and there's a reasonable
> likelihood that the latter would be apart from the proposed revision.
> Under RFC 3066, a site admin could already change the way the site's
> pages are tagged, leading to a change in user experience. That problem
> cannot be attributed to the proposed revision.

Sure all sorts of things could be registered, but there is also common
practice. Most tags in use are of the form language or language-country.

And registering sr-Latn doesn't have the same problem because it doesn't
conflict with sr-CS. (Since sr-Latn might not be of the language used in CS.)
It is a different beast. On the other hand sr-Latn-CS does interfere with
matching requests for sr-CS and who knows, maybe that is the actual reason it
hasn't been requested.

And yes site admin's can change their tags to change user experience, but that
is presumably intentional and done with forethought.

It is a different thing entirely to change a standard in a way that requires
admins to choose unnecessarily between existing and new formats that result in
different user experiences.

One of the benefits of standards is that they provide graceful evolution where
Sometimes new features require breaks in compatibility. This instance does not
require it.
Is there a good reason for script to be secondary?

Do you think admins will add script to their tags, if the majority of their
intended users (that do not specify script)will then get a completely different


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