ISO 639 JAC decision re mo/mol

Lang Gérard gerard.lang at
Mon Nov 3 15:58:10 CET 2008

Dear All,
I completely agree with Doug's surprise ! 
Moreover, the alpha-2 ISO 639 code element "mo" for the language name "moldavian" was created with the publication of  ISO 639 (1988), and the alpha-3 ISO 639-2 code element "mol" for the same language name was created with the publication of ISO 639-2 (1998). 
Between this time, Moldova became an independant state, and the Constitution adopted on 29 july 2004 states that:
"The language of the State of the Republic of Moldova is the moldovan language, written with the Latin script".
How is it possible that this language name, that passed all criteria to be recognized inside ISO 639[-1] and ISO 639-2 during 20 or 10 years, has now to be deprecated ?
Bien cordialement.
Gérard LANG

-----Message d'origine-----
De : ietf-languages-bounces at [mailto:ietf-languages-bounces at] De la part de Doug Ewell
Envoyé : lundi 3 novembre 2008 15:32
À : ietf-languages at
Objet : Re: ISO 639 JAC decision re mo/mol

Håvard Hjulstad <HHj at standard dot no> wrote:

> The identifiers mo and mol are deprecated
> leaving ro and ron/rum the current language identifiers to be used for 
> the variant of the Romanian language also known as Moldavian and 
> Moldovan in English and moldave in French. (The identifier ron is used 
> in the ISO 639-2 T table; the identifier rum in the ISO 639-2 B
> table.)
> The identifiers mo and mol will not be assigned to different items, 
> and recordings using these identifiers will not be invalid.

The registration form and proposed new record to mark 'mo' as Deprecated in the LSR will be posted shortly.

Strange that ISO 639-2/RA should choose to deprecate this code element less than five months after updating it with a new variant name (Moldovan).

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

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