Correction for pinyin

Phillips, Addison addison at
Tue Mar 9 16:20:40 CET 2010

I don't think it matters which field is used, but I do think that, having spotted this particular item, it would make sense to provide some information in the registry about it. The real problem is that someone needs to fill in a request form.

It might be easier for registry maintainers if we used a Comments field. There is a requirement in BCP 47 for the first description field to match ("whenever possible") the Reference Name in ISO 639-3 (last paragraph of Section 3.1.5). Adding some parenthetical information to the description shouldn't interfere with this, but it might make automation of registry checking more difficult.


Addison Phillips
Globalization Architect -- Lab126

Internationalization is not a feature.
It is an architecture.

> -----Original Message-----
> From: ietf-languages-bounces at [mailto:ietf-languages-
> bounces at] On Behalf Of Doug Ewell
> Sent: Tuesday, March 09, 2010 7:12 AM
> To: ietf-languages at
> Subject: Re: Correction for pinyin
> Mark Davis ☕ wrote:
> > The main goal of the Description is not to completely describe
> the
> > language tag; instead, it is to distinguish it from other tags
> with
> > which it could be confused.
> Of course.  But a great many languages have names (including ISO
> 639
> names and Description fields) which could potentially be confused
> with
> others.
> > So given that it is a quite natural mistake to think that the
> term
> > "Pinyin" means what 99% of those knowing the word think it means
> > (applying to over a billion people), rather than the minute
> fraction
> > of a percent who would realize that it means something quite
> different
> > (applying to 27K people), we owe it to readers to be quite clear
> about
> > this.
> I don't dispute that, but I also think most users of the Registry
> (and
> for that matter ISO 639), when they see an entry that puzzles them,
> might find out from a neutral standpoint what it means, rather than
> assuming the standards organization is clueless.  The RA really
> does
> understand that a transcription scheme is not a language.
> > What you suggest is probably adequate, but we might go so far as:
> >
> > Pinyin (a Niger-Congo language spoken in Cameroon)
> Just to be clear for all, you support putting this information in
> the
> Description, while I support putting it in a Comments field.
> --
> Doug Ewell  |  Thornton, Colorado, USA  |
> RFC 5645, 4645, UTN #14  |  ietf-languages @ ­
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