ISO 639-3 releases list of 2009 changes

John Cowan cowan at
Fri Jan 22 17:03:19 CET 2010

Mark Davis â?? scripsit:

> The way we have it set up, it isn't for us to decide. But consumers of BCP47
> (like CLDR) do have to, if ISO continues to change languages into
> macrolanguages (will German be next?).

Very improbable, given the description of 'de(u)' in Ethnologue.
Though Ethnologue is no more immune to error than ISO 639 [*], it does
provide the denotation of the vast majority of 639-3 code elements, and is clearly about
Standard German as spoken from Belgium to Kazakhstan, not any other kind
of German.  It would be a massive and unnecessary widening of the term
to turn it into a macrolanguage of any sort.

[*] For example, the 639-3/RA points out that Ethnologue is incorrect
in saying that the creole of Martinique is Guadelopean Creole French
'gcf'; in fact it is Saint Lucian Creole French 'acf'.  A proposal was
made this year to change the name of 'acf' to "Martiniquan Creole French"
on historical grounds, which the RA rejected as insufficiently helpful.

The Unicode Standard does not encode            John Cowan
idiosyncratic, personal, novel, or private
use characters, nor does it encode logos
or graphics.                                    cowan at

More information about the Ietf-languages mailing list