request for subtag for Elfdalian

Doug Ewell doug at
Sun Apr 17 20:25:28 CEST 2016

Peter Constable wrote:

> The RA cannot put itself in the position of establishing the status of
> the target of an encoding proposal. This is exactly the case as well
> for Unicode: Unicode will not approve a proposal to encode characters
> or a script that does not yet have an established independent status,
> and will not put itself in the position of encoding things in order to
> establish such a status.

This is an important point, but uncharacteristically for one of Peter's 
explanations, I found the wording a bit obscure. Maybe it's just me. In 
any event, what I got out of it was:

The RA will not approve a language code element for (e.g.) Elfdalian for 
the express purpose of (a) establishing that Elfdalian is an independent 
language or (b) fostering the development of Elfdalian as an independent 

On a separate note, it is not the fault of either ISO 639-3/RA or the 
BCP 47 effort if there are specifications and tools that do not use 
them, but remain anchored to the old RFC 3066 language identification 

In any case, the "Available layouts" graphic on Michał Kosmulski's page 
"Creating custom keyboard layouts for X11 using XKB" [1] shows that XKB, 
like Wikipedia, doesn't really adhere to any standard [2], but makes up 
codes as they see fit, such as "guj" and "ge" and "ca_enhanced". So 
perhaps they could just make up "elf" and be done with it.

[2] I have heard that Wikipedia is trying to improve this.

Doug Ewell | | Thornton, CO 🇺🇸 

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