Picking and choosing (was: Re: Europanto)

Doug Ewell dewell at roadrunner.com
Wed Jan 30 16:12:49 CET 2008

Frank Ellermann <nobody at xyzzy dot claranet dot de> wrote:

> Maybe DG, EA, IC, &Co. are bad enough, and the "eur" example
> is overkill.  But if something like "eur" arrives here today
> (as 639-2 bug) the 4646 rules only say "must be registered".
> The reviewer could refuse to do this.

Actually he could not: Section 3.3 says:

"Maintenance of the registry requires that as codes are assigned or 
withdrawn by ISO 639, ISO 15924, ISO 3166, and UN M.49, the Language 
Subtag Reviewer MUST evaluate each change, determine whether it 
conflicts with existing registry entries, and submit the information to 
IANA for inclusion in the registry."

There's no evidence that 'eur' conflicts with an existing Registry 
entry.  "Conflicts with the Reviewer's or ietf-languages list members' 
definition of 'language'" is not mentioned.  This is an RFC 2119 MUST, 
and the Reviewer is answerable to IESG for adhering to this requirement.

> But maybe he should
> be *entitled* to delay registration until it is clear how
> serious the constructed language, disputed territory, typo
> on the UN page, or what else actually is.

Or maybe not.  The question is, where does this stop?  Draft-4646bis-11 
allows the Reviewer to correct typos and misspellings and other 
editorial problems, but making judgments on substantive issues is a 
Pandora's box.

Are all constructed languages to be subject to the judgment of the 
Reviewer?  What about non-constructed languages?  (There could be 
"questionable" ISO 639-3 entries for those as well.)  What is a 
"disputed" territory?  Should Israel be considered "disputed" because 
some countries deny its right to exist?  What about Taiwan?  Western 
Sahara?  Bouvet Island?

What happened to the idea of BCP 47 being an application and extension 
of the core ISO and UN standards, instead of a competitor?

Doug Ewell  *  Fullerton, California, USA  *  RFC 4645  *  UTN #14
http://www.alvestrand.no/mailman/listinfo/ietf-languages  ˆ

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