Re: Address of ISO 3166 mailing list

From: Michael Everson (
Date: Sun Jun 08 2003 - 09:34:57 EDT

  • Next message: Philippe Verdy: "Re: Address of ISO 3166 mailing list"

    At 16:15 +0100 2003-06-06, Marion Gunn wrote:

    >I do think such a service would be good, to provide the same open
    >discussion forum/bug reporting/testing ground for ISO 3166 [...]

    Except, of course, that the ISO 3166 Maintenance Agency is not a
    Registration Authority, but a Maintenance Agency. Its codes are
    assigned when the United Nations informs it that a code needs to be
    assigned. It would seem that a discussion list for ISO 3166 would
    therefore be of little use.

    >(Some Irish lists, as you may know, were recently mercilessly
    >dive-bombed with msgs in English, trying to disrupt debates in Irish
    >about a lang-tag problem which also surfaced on the IANA and Unicode

    The "merciless dive-bombing" you refer to is obviously the necessary
    defence *I* had to mount against the alarmist hullabaloo which did
    not "surface", but which was raised needlessly by *you* on the IETF
    Language Tag list, the Unicode list, and various Irish lists,
    regarding text which you disliked in some of Apple's software that
    supports Irish cultural locales. Pooh-poohing that defence because it
    was in the English language is a poor rhetorical device at best, as
    is your continued avoidance of the use of my name in attacks such as
    the one you have made here.

    The fact that the "lang-tag problem" had nothing whatsoever to do
    with language tags is known to more than a fair few of the readers of
    the lists that your "campaign" was visited upon. It is you, Marion,
    who dive-bombed the IETF and Unicode lists with blather about the
    "anticonstitutionality" of Apple's software; it is you who incited
    letter-writing campaigns -- which amounted to a form of chain-mail
    spam -- to the irritation of many people associated with Apple, NSAI,
    and other organizations. It is you who wasted the time of Ireland's
    *government* by raising the issue to a Parliamentary Question, and it
    is you who are now scurrying to reinsert yourself into the standards
    process simply because you're not happy with the answer that you got
    to that Question.

    (The Minister who responded praised Apple for looking after Ireland's
    cultural interests, and acknowledged that, while the terminology
    question was not a standardization matter, Apple had asked NSAI's
    committee on Codes, Character Sets, and Internationalization -- which
    I convene -- for advice on the "controversy". This advice has been
    given, and Apple has thanked the committee for its input. What Apple
    chooses to do with the advice is -- as the Minister rightly pointed
    out -- Apple's business, and I look forward to finding out in due
    course when Apple releases its next version of OS X.)

    >Oftentimes, I feel the Unicode list, or some of its members, to be
    >approachable/helpful/appreciative in areas to do with character
    >sets/groupings and cultural codetags, and how the bits and pieces
    >get cobbled together, for good or ill, to make up locales.

    The Unicode list is full of participants who are, indeed,
    approachable, helpful,and appreciative of expertise regarding
    characters and character sets. What is a "character grouping" meant
    to refer to? You seem to be in a complete muddle about the difference
    between tags and codes and text. (What is a "cultural codetag"? You
    really oughtn't make things up as you go along.) You've certainly
    confused the codes for languages, countries, and airlines, and the
    function of this list and other lists with regard to

    >At other times, I feel like I just stumbled into a YMCA when its
    >inmates are restive/want a common enemy (that's when I bring to mind
    >the 3 children - or, yea, a Daniel! - and go do it anyway).

    (This is certainly a remarkable piece of prose.)

    As a rhetorical device, whining isn't very attractive. You have, in
    my view at least, behaved unprofessionally and offensively, making
    thinly-veiled attacks on me and my work, on discussion forums where I
    have, it seems, a good deal of credibility. You've been told to knock
    it off by people who have less patience than I. Pretending to be the
    innocent victim because you don't like the criticism you received
    doesn't fool anyone, any more than bad-mouthing me without using my
    name does.

    For my part, I am rather tired of playing games like this with you.
    Frankly, it seems to me that what expertise "EGT" had in Unicode
    matters left the "company" when the Everson left it. The fact that
    you *continue* to maintain my former e-mail addresses
    and, and that you are known to have read mail sent
    to *me* at both of those addresses, seems to me to be the height of
    unprofessional and indeed deceitful practice. There has been no
    Everson at "EGT" for more than eighteen months. Isn't it odd that you
    won't acknowledge my existence on the Unicode and IETF lists, yet you
    continue to breach my privacy by reading my mail? As I have said to
    you many times, you should ring your ISP and discontinue the
    addresses immediately and permanently. You've no business using my
    name. You should be ashamed of yourself for doing so.

    (Readers of these lists should be particularly careful not to write
    to me at either of those addresses, as sometimes occurs due to the
    presence of that address in archived online documents.)

    I'm not particularly happy about having to insert discussion of
    personal matters into our technical discussions. But I don't think
    it's right to ignore such issues when clearly they are the primary
    cause of unpleasantness on our discussion forums. Perhaps being
    forthright about the facts is better than pretending that there isn't
    a problem. I should certainly like to see the end of this.

    Michael Everson * * Everson Typography *  *

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