Additional descriptions for territories ( was: Re: Libya)

Doug Ewell doug at
Mon Oct 3 23:42:04 CEST 2011

CE Whitehead <cewcathar at hotmail dot com> wrote:

> (I also note that there is no subtag to designate "the Levant;" there
> is also no subtag for "the Mediterranean" [Southern Europe,
> the Levant, and North Africa combined] that I can see;

There are no subtags (except private-use) for any supranational region
that is not coded in UN M.49 or exceptionally reserved in ISO 3166-1.

> also no subtag for "South Central Asia" [so standard in everyday use
> but
> this looks like "South Asia;" perhaps I am seeking a subtag for "the
> Indian Subcontinent"]. That's life I guess.) 

UN M.49 once had a code element 062 for "South-Central Asia", but this
was withdrawn and the constituent countries allocated to other "Asia"
code elements before RFC 4646 was published.  Code elements that were
withdrawn, deprecated, or deleted from a core standard before they were
eligible for use in BCP 47 language tags are not added to the Registry.

> as for Iran, both names might be helpful to have, but Doug does not
> prefer the two-name solution.

That's a mischaracterization.  I suggested *possibly* adding a second
Description field when the existing, ISO-based one might not be clear
enough to help users choose the right subtag.  "Democratic People's
Republic of Korea" is, to me, a good example where it might be helpful
to add "North Korea" as an alternative Description field.  "Islamic
Republic of Iran" is less obvious because it does at least contain
"Iran", which is not true of any other region subtag.

> I guess I support the same changes Doug does thus; I am unsure about
> [PS] (but he is right; we have not been asked to change it by anyone;
> so leave it be).

I haven't formally proposed anything.  I just mentioned the idea in an
offhanded way ("we might also consider..."), and quite honestly I now
wish I'd never brought it up.

Doug Ewell | Thornton, Colorado, USA | RFC 5645, 4645, UTN #14 | | @DougEwell ­

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