registration requests re Portuguese

Doug Ewell doug at
Mon Apr 13 18:49:46 CEST 2015

Yury wrote:

>> Now, given that, are you saying that there could not be distinct
>> samples of those different national varieties of Portuguese that also
>> exhibit the characteristics of AO1990 orthography, as distinct from
>> other orthographies?
> I'm saying one won't be able to know about them (and so, tag them)
> until somebody does the generalisation and the related (publishing)
> artifact comes up. The book, the ruleset, etc.

In other words, in order to tag content, one must know the proper way to
tag the content. Yes, I agree: content should be tagged wisely.

> The folks of AO may do all varieties of ao1990,

This is the core argument that has gone unsubstantiated: that there are
multiple "varieties of ao1990" that cannot be tagged consistently as
'ao1990', but require either (a) separate subtags or (b) limitations on
the types of "pt" tags that can be used with such a subtag.

> but until somebody goes and, say, publishes a paper on what do folks
> of a certain AO region do with ao1990, there'd rather be no
> (conjectural) tag. Then, and only then, would the 'region' or, rather,
> another 'variant' element be appropriate.

This doesn't answer my point, which is broken down further below:

1. There are known differences between the Portuguese language as used
in Portugal, Brazil, Angola, and other locations, which may reasonably
merit distinct tagging.

2. There are known differences between the various Portuguese
orthographic standards, agreements, and accords (regardless of when
ratified and by whom), which may reasonably merit distinct tagging.

3. Items (1) and (2) may reasonably occur independently of one another.
That is, there may reasonably be content in "Portuguese as used in
Portugal that uses the 1945 spelling," or "Portuguese as used in Brazil
that uses the 1990 spelling," or many other combinations thereof.

As I understand it, this is the basis for the argument that all of the
proposed subtags should have "pt" as their Prefix, and none should be
further broken out into separate subtags as to "Orthography as used in
Country Y."

> Not lang+region, however. The lang+region combination is just a relic
> of olden informatics days.

As stated by others, this is simply not true, as described below.

>> For en-US and en-UK, nds-DE and nds-NL, and at least up to now, pt-BR
>> and pt-PT, the language+region combination has served to distinguish
>> dialects that many users felt needed distinguishing.
> All those ones you mention surely did their part in the days when all
> was needed was a coarse-ishly delimited set of basic _culture_-related
> tags (like, currency, thousands, and date format). In days where the
> more and more fine distinctions are being set up in the _language_
> area (and more and more folks sort of get their share of ramplight
> from those), not quite so.

(not sure what "ramplight" means)

For some languages, there are noticeable differences in usage (spelling,
pronunciation, lexicon, grammar, etc.) that are best described as being
characteristic of one region or another. Any English speaker will agree
there are differences between "American English" and "British English,"
even if they disagree as to what those differences are or are poorly
informed about them. The same is true for "French French" and "Canadian
French," and others.

None of this has anything to do with currency signs, thousands
separators, date formats, and the like.

That is, it is true that region subtags are used, and useful, for
selecting locale information. But that is not their only use, and it is
not the use being discussed here.

Doug Ewell | | Thornton, CO 🇺🇸

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