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Re: Article for wide review: Choosing a language tag

From: John Cowan <cowan@ccil.org>
Date: Fri, 9 Oct 2009 21:51:55 -0400
To: "Phillips, Addison" <addison@amazon.com>
Cc: John Cowan <cowan@ccil.org>, "www-international@w3.org" <www-international@w3.org>
Message-ID: <20091010015154.GC27019@mercury.ccil.org>
Phillips, Addison scripsit:

> > a) It's a mistake to conflate "[p]rimary language subtags that can
> > be used with extended language subtags" with macrolanguages.  Only six
> > ('ar', 'kok', 'ms', 'sw', 'uz', 'zh') of the 58 current
> > macrolanguages,
> > plus 'sgn', fall into this category.  Find or invent another term
> > to avoid confusion.
> 
> I agree. I think some of us have gotten into the habit of talking
> about the macrolanguage-flavored extlangs as if they described the
> category. They do not. Probably the best name for this are: "extended
> language subtags" :-).

Well, "extended language subtag" is the right name for the second
subtag in "kok-gom", but what is the right name for the first subtag?
Just saying "primary language subtag", though correct, doesn't note
what's special about "kok" and its six friends.

> Note in particular that these are "specially selected languages". That
> is quite literally the qualification for being an extlang---that the
> IETF LTRU WG chose them (and no others).

Perhaps we should call the primary language tags that have extlang
subtags the "specially selected language subtags", then.

-- 
In my last lifetime,                            John Cowan
I believed in reincarnation;                    http://www.ccil.org/~cowan
in this lifetime,                               cowan@ccil.org
I don't.  --Thiagi
Received on Saturday, 10 October 2009 01:52:27 GMT

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