ISO 639 - New item approved - N'Ko

Doug Ewell dewell at
Fri Jun 9 08:41:16 CEST 2006

Addison Phillips <addison at yahoo dash inc dot com> wrote:

>>> Gwich'in should be changed to Gwich&#x02BC;in, surely.
>> Then this should be discussed here.  Please, list members, if you 
>> have a view on this, speak up within the next two weeks.
> No, darn it--use the process. If you think this in error, fill in a 
> registration form and submit it. Then we have a two week clock to 
> debate its approval. The Description field's only stability guarantee 
> is that the meaning won't change (Section 3.4, item 2). Fixing the 
> punctuation certainly would not violate that.

I think the list still has such a diversity of opinion on this subject 
that we're not even ready to fill out a form for discussion purposes. 
AFAICT, at least one person wants each of the following:

* flatten all apostrophes to ASCII
* replace all ASCII apostrophes with non-ASCII
* include both versions as alternate descriptions

This issue affects only about eight subtags now, but when 3066ter 
arrives with 7,000 new language and extlang subtags, it will affect more 
than 100 of them.  We really do need to decide on a policy before we get 

> I agree with Richard that we should have both U+0027 and U+2019

I don't, but then I'm just one voice.

> and, if I had to choose just one for the registry, which I don't, 
> would pick U+0027.

I still see advantages and disadvantages to both choices.  One of my 
concerns with regard to U+02BB and U+02BC is that -- I know I shouldn't 
say this, as a Unicode aficionado -- the majority of fonts still don't 
support them, and the user will see white boxes.  At least U+2018 and 
U+2019 are supported in almost every "normal" font.  And yes, I know 
application developers aren't required to use every description exactly 
as it appears in the registry (I don't in my app), but we know most 

Doug Ewell
Fullerton, California, USA

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