Fw: Erzgebirgisch Classification Question
doug at ewellic.org
Tue Mar 25 16:06:32 CET 2008
Frank Ellermann <nobody at xyzzy dot claranet dot de> wrote:
> So if you decide to wait for a successor of RFC 4646
> introducing or allowing ISO 639-3 language subtags
> including "sxu", and register erzgeb as sxu-erzgeb,
> then it might be possible to add de-erzgeb later, but
> it's not possible to remove sxu.
I thought we had this discussion already about adding a second prefix,
and frankly I'm surprised to see it come up again.
The purpose of multiple prefixes is to allow a single variant subtag to
be associated with multiple languages, NOT to provide "aliases" for the
same language variation.
Syntactically, yes, it would be possible to create the subtag 'erzgeb'
with a prefix of 'sxu', and then add a second prefix 'de' later.
Semantically, this would make no sense, because it would imply the
existence of both an 'erzgeb' variant of Upper Saxon AND an 'erzgeb'
variant of German, which is not the situation here.
Consider the subtag 'baku1926', which denotes a particular orthography,
and which has 10 Prefix fields. This signifies that the orthography can
be used with any of those 10 languages. There is no implication that
the combinations "az-baku1926", "ba-baku1926", and so forth are
equivalent or interchangeable in any way. This is by design, as it was
not expected that the ietf-languages group would intentionally create
this type of duplication. We have enough trouble with duplication as it
is, with registered tags that are superseded by ISO-based subtags, and
ISO-imposed overlaps like no/nb/nn.
Our goal in registering variants like 'erzgeb' is to allow legitimate
language variations to be tagged, not to provide tags with perfect
mnemonic or language-hierarchy value. (Ask speakers of Yakut whether
'sah' is an ideal subtag for their language.) We need to understand
this and not promote the idea that we can always add a "better" alias
for the same variation later on.
Doug Ewell * Fullerton, California, USA * RFC 4645 * UTN #14
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