New UN M.49 code element for South Sudan
doug at ewellic.org
Sat Jul 16 22:20:03 CEST 2011
The short answer is, region subtags don't attempt to cover that level of detail. If someone comes up with an actual language-tagging scenario where this ambiguity will pose a problem, we can look into the provision of BCP 47 that allows registering UN numeric codes directly. But I hope it doesn't come to that.
Doug Ewell • doug at ewellic.org
Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T
From: Misha.Wolf at thomsonreuters.com
Date: Sat, 16 Jul 2011 20:50:20
To: <doug at ewellic.org>; <ietf-languages at iana.org>
Subject: RE: New UN M.49 code element for South Sudan
OK, but the “SD” in language tags will then change from denoting one region to denoting another region (which is a subset of the first region). This may not cause a problem. I don’t know.
It’s the same case as “YU” which used to denote one region and then denoted a substantially smaller region, before being replaced by “CS”.
From: Doug Ewell [mailto:doug at ewellic.org]
Sent: 16 July 2011 20:44
To: Wolf, Misha (M Content Mktpl); ietf-languages at iana.org
Subject: Re: New UN M.49 code element for South Sudan
Misha Wolf <Misha dot Wolf at thomsonreuters dot com <mailto:Misha.Wolf at thomsonreuters.com> > wrote:
What will we do re the rump “Sudan” if the ISO 3166 MA gives it the “SD” Alpha-2 code which used to belong to the old Sudan?
Good question. That will almost certainly happen; the MA almost never changes code elements unless the name of the country changes substantially. That being the case, we have little rationale for changing the subtag.
The answer is that we can:
(a) Do nothing, or
(b) Add a Comments field to the record for SD, something to the effect of “See also XX”, in case we feel that this is necessary to identify a regional variety of one of the 133 (Ethnologue) living languages spoken in the old Sudan.
Optionally, we can also add a “See also SD” comment to the new XX region record. This might provide a hint for backward-compatible matching, but again it would only be justified in the case where some language ‘xxx’ is spoken in South Sudan and also somewhere else, and the South Sudan variety needs to be identified as such in language tags, and this would have been tagged “xxx-SD” previously, and “xxx-XX” in the future.
As a side note, I have no clue what the new alpha-2 code element will be. Western European representatives on the MA might object to ‘SS’.
Doug Ewell | Thornton, Colorado, USA | RFC 5645, 4645, UTN #14
www.ewellic.org | www.facebook.com/doug.ewell | @DougEwell
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