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Re: [idn] Re: FYI: BOF on Internationalized Email Addresses (IEA)

2003-10-27 18:15:35

On Mon, 27 Oct 2003, Mark Davis wrote:
I'm curious: why do you think that everyone would be satisfied with Latin
characters only, and no non-Latin characters?

I didn't say that.  I stated my belief that, for reasons of practicality,
most individuals in regions which do not use Latin script accept the use
of Latin script for multinational exchange.

It does not work well for an individual in Japan with surname Tanaka to
expect the overwhelming majority of non-Japanese individuals worldwide to
know his surname is written with the Han characters for "rice paddy" and
"middle", or what those characters look like, or how to enter those
characters on the computer.

It does, however, work for him to expect that the overwhelming majority of
individuals worldwide to know how to deal with the 6 Latin letters that
form the romanization "Tanaka".

Nor is it very likely that this situation will change in the future.  I
doubt that many individuals in the world are literate in all the world's
active scripts.  Literacy in one's native script and basic Latin script is
something that most computer users possess today.

For domestic exchange only, that pair of Han characters are probably
alright.  Within Western Europe, it's probably alright to use Latin
characters with diacriticals.

Perhaps the main problem that needs to be decided in any IEA effort is if
it is alright to have email addresses that are only usable in limited
areas of the world; or if not, how to represent internationalized email
addresses in a usable fashion when (not if) the email address needs to be
represented for a person and/or computer is illiterate in that script.

A likely side issue is whether it is "good enough" to promote Latin
characters with diacriticals to the same status of "everybody must know
how to do these" that is required for ASCII.

-- Mark --
Science does not emerge from voting, party politics, or public debate.
Si vis pacem, para bellum.