Language for taxonomic names, redux

Michael Everson everson at
Sat Feb 25 00:28:57 CET 2017

I agree with what Arthur has said here. 

> On 24 Feb 2017, at 09:59, Arthur Reutenauer <arthur.reutenauer at> wrote:
> 	Andy,
>  I think it would be useful if, instead of replying to Michael
> tit-for-tat, you would list actual use cases where a subtag would help.
> Wikipedia is one of them, and your position, if I’ve understood it
> correctly, is: the subtag can be rolled out instantly in infoboxes by
> changing the template, and it would be up to Wikipedia contributors to
> use it in running text, according to Wikimedia guidelines and
> long-standing practice.  That’s one example, and nobody denies that it
> is a legitimate one.
>  We need more.  You’ve referred several times to earlier discussions,
> some of which contain concrete suggestions, but if you want to convince
> the contributors to this list you’ll need to actually write them down
> instead of just giving pointers.  This is not a peer-reviewed article,
> nobody is going to check your references, and besides your emails don’t
> come with a bibliography at the bottom.  In any case, if all you write
> is “see the points made by ...” said points are not actually part of the
> discussion.
>  It would also be useful if you acknowledged that the system for which
> you wish to have a subtag is not in any way a language, variety, or
> dialect.  It has no syntax, no parts of speech except for nouns and
> adjectives, no autonomous pronunciation.  It is a specialised lexicon
> which, as Karl pointed out, is sufficiently “language-like” to warrant
> separate tagging.  Binomial names currently appear in contexts where (as
> I understand it) language tagging would be appropriate because other,
> similar pieces of content are marked with their own tag.  The previous
> sentence is intentionally vague because I don’t actually know what these
> situations are; this is precisely what you should illustrate with
> concrete examples.  People on this list are receptive to these
> arguments.
> 	Best,
> 		Arthur
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