Persian vs Farsi (half-OT)

Doug Ewell doug at
Sat Dec 6 05:40:31 CET 2008

Roozbeh Pournader <roozbeh at htpassport dot com> wrote:

> Still, be prepared for the herd of people who do not like to see 
> "Farsi" in English (if we can't get 639-3 to change it). I seem to be 
> a proponent of "Persian", but believe me, I am mostly trying to fend 
> off future loud protesters, of whom I'm a victim myself.

Oh, I'm not worried about the herd of protestors.  My response to them 
is that we have a commitment to preserve the names defined by the ISO 
and UN standards, save for minor typographical and stylistic editing. 
We do not make our own partisan statements by changing a few of the ISO 
names and keeping the rest.  That is not our job.

We have no obligation to add every imaginable alternative name, and 
certainly not whimsical or pejorative names or straight translations of 
the names into other languages.  But there are clearly some 
English-speaking people who use the word "Farsi" in the names of these 
two languages, with no ill intent, and anyone can tell what languages 
they are talking about.

Doug Ewell  *  Thornton, Colorado, USA  *  RFC 4645  *  UTN #14  ˆ

More information about the Ietf-languages mailing list