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Re: Last Call: IANA Charset Registration Procedures to BCP

From: Martin J. Duerst <duerst@w3.org>
Date: Wed, 31 May 2000 21:17:36 +0900
To: ietf-charsets@iana.org, ned.freed@innosoft.com
Message-id: <>
[This goes bcc to the iesg; I chose bcc just to make sure that they
don't get all the followups in case this leads to discussion.]

Hello Ned,

It looks like by chance I'm just barely in time for this last call.

Some comments, none major showstoppers:

- The first sentence on page 3 has some strange repetition:
   'to allow charsets' in the first line; 'to be used as charsets' at the end.

- Section 2.5: 'A given CES is typically associated with a single CCS':
   For the UTF-8 example, this is definitely true (and helpful to be
   pointed out). For others CESs, I think it's wrong. The classical
   example is what I would call here the 'identity 8-bit CES', which
   is used in the whole ISO-8859-X series and many other cases.

- Section 3.1, 'All registered charsets MUST note whether or not they
   are suitable for use in MIME text.' and Sec. 6, 'Suitability for
   use in Mime text:': As recent discussion has shown, this may
   benefit from some careful clarification, but I guess this already
   is on your todo list.

- 3.1 'constructed as a composition of a CCS and a CES...': CCS
   appears three times in singular. There are many charsets where
   a CES combines more than one CCS. Same problem again in the
   registration template.

- 'All registered charsets MUST be specified in a *stable*':
   What about extensions, such as for ISO 10646? What about
   variants, such as for Shift_JIS (vendor extensions as well
   as mapping variants, for the later see
   e.g. http://www.w3.org/TR/japanese-xml/).

- 3.3 talks about names, and a primary name. The registry uses
   the terms 'name', 'alias', and also 'preferred MIME name'.
   It would be very helpful if the terminology were unified.

- 3.5 'ONLY if it adds significant value': I have heard from
   some people that this strict requirement has lead to some
   contraproductive effects, in particular things being used
   with x- prefixes for years. I think it would make sense to
   tone this down a bit.

- 3.6: The requirement of documenting the mapping to ISO 10646
   where possible is great. It may be worth for the IETF to look
   at formats to do this in a machine-readable way. For an example,
   please have a look at http://www.unicode.org/unicode/reports/tr22/.

- Section 4.1: 'The intent of the public posting is to solicit
   comments and feedback on the definition of the charset and
   the name choosen for it over a two week period.': At the
   end of the sentence, the references are not exactly clear.
   The name choosen for the definition of the charset?
   The name choosen for a two week period?
   This can easily be improved, I guess.

- 4.2: 'Decisions made by the reviewer must be posted to the ietf-
   charsets mailing within 14 days.': Within 14 days of the decision?
   That would be pretty easy; nobody can prove to the reviewer that
   he made a decision three months ago if he forgot to post it and
   claims that it took him three month to actually take the decision :-).

- 5. The text about the 'Assigned Numbers' RFC reads hopelessly
   outdated in the age of the web, and rather strange given that
   the last such RFC was issued in 1994.

- 5. Given some recent explanations by Harald about how to coordinate
   charset registration and RFC publication, it seems to be a good
   idea to explain that roughly, so that further registrants don't
   start from the wrong end.

- 6. 'A URL to a specification' -> 'A URI to a specification'.

- [ISO-8859]: Lots of updates here, please see e.g.

- [ISO-10646]: Please update this to refer to the 2000 version!

Regards,    Martin.

At 00/05/03 08:06 -0400, The IESG wrote:

>The IESG has received a request to consider IANA Charset Registration
>Procedures <draft-freed-charset-regist-01.txt> as a BCP, replacing RFC
>2278 (currently a BCP). This has been reviewed in the IETF but is not
>the product of an IETF Working Group.
>The IESG plans to make a decision in the next few weeks, and solicits
>final comments on this action.  Please send any comments to the
>iesg@ietf.org or ietf@ietf.org mailing lists by June 2, 2000.
>Files can be obtained via
Received on Wednesday, 31 May 2000 08:13:27 UTC

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