CE Whitehead cewcathar at
Wed Jun 16 05:32:22 CEST 2010

Hi.  I can go as far now as undeprecating [sh].  But I think no matter what way we go this issue is political;

And I think the three currently-encoded languages are as distinct as some others encoded.

I need more information on Serbian versus Montenegrin but will not object to a separate code even without more information.  (But I can't endorse it.)
Leif Halvard Silli xn--mlform-iua at 
Wed Jun 16 00:10:36 CEST 2010 

> Kent Karlsson, Tue, 15 Jun 2010 20:51:43 +0200:
> Den 2010-06-15 17.13, skrev "ISO639-3" <ISO639-3 at>:

>>> I am interested in this group's thoughts regarding whether the
>>> Serbo-Croatian macrolanguage in Part 3 (though not included in Part 2, and
>>> deprecated in Part 1) is a factor, and in what ways.
>> From the information I've seen, I think 'sh' should be undeprecated in
>> part 1 (as we did for IANA language subtags), and 'hbs' be included in
>> part 2 (each part 1 code must have an equivalent part 2 code).
>> Since the [bs / bos], [hr / hrv], and [sr / srp] codes seem to be created
>> for purely political reasons, these should be deprecated, and ISO (i.e. the
>> relevant RA:s for language codes) should resist this kind of politicised
>> codes.

> +1 (!) This would be my absolute preference.

>> While it sometimes may be hard to draw the line between what should
>> be regarded as different languages or just different dialects of the same
>> language, it seems that here there are just some rather minor differences
>> of dialects of the same language and even smaller differences in
>> orthography (more of experimental, even failing, spelling reforms than
>> anything else). The Latn/Cyrl script difference is another matter, and
>> there is apparently a one-to-one correspondence in this case (which isn't
>> always the case when converting between Latn and Cyrl for words/names;
>> depending on languages *and* spelling preferences per word/name).
> -- 
> leif halvard silli

I tend to think that speakers of one language may believe their dialects to be seprate languages while speakers of another may not see a geographic or country associated with their mutually comprehensible dialects so may prefer to

encode them as variants.

I can  at this point go with Kent and Mark's suggestion for undeprecating [sh] -- I note that we've discussed this issue before here and it got nowhere.


I personally think that the decision to deprecate these three codes ( [sr], [hr], [bs] is thorny coming from outsiders to the region.
(If we keep these three we may have to add a code for Montenegrin:  I suppose that is where this is going.

I would like to see more description of the differences.)

We have other relatively slightly differentiated languages encoded as separate languages now.
(I have limited knowledge of Iranian Persian but notwithstanding I checked out a youtube video for learning Dari [Afghan Persian] and what I saw was what I already knew in Iranian Persian . . . of course the lessons did not go far enough for me to be sure there were no real differences -- and
there are differences I am sure that I missed as someone who probably did not get the accent quite right  but I just can't say which group of languages [the Persian group or the Serbo-Croatian group] is more or less differentiated than the other.
Thus, it's political to me at this point whichever way we go in any case.  I hope this makes sense.)


C. E. Whitehead
cewcathar at
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