RE: Private Use Area

From: Erkki I Kolehmainen <>
Date: Mon, 18 Feb 2013 15:43:00 +0200

This looks quite clear to me. If I create something and somebody else uses my creation in the intended context, he agrees to my definition. his agreement is private, outside the standard, since the same code points may represent a multitude of different meanings. It may also be the result of a negotiating process within a special purpose user group.

Sincerely, Erkki

-----Alkuperäinen viesti-----
Lähettäjä: [] Puolesta William_J_G Overington
Lähetetty: 18. helmikuuta 2013 14:48
Aihe: Private Use Area

Earlier today I posted in a forum, mentioning the Private Use Areas.

I referenced section 16.5 of the following document.

I felt that I needed to write as follows, in order to provide clarity.


There is a lot about what is called "private agreement". That is, I feel a somewhat unfortunate way of explaining the situation. You do not need the agreement of anybody to define your assignments in the Private Use Area. Certainly, if someone then wants to use the font and access an alternate glyph then he or she needs to go along with what you have assigned in order to use the font. To me, that sounds like following the documentation of the font rather than being an agreement.

end quote

It seems to me that the use of the term "private agreement" in section 16.5 does not correctly explain the situation that exists, namely that anyone can assign within quite wide limits what he or she chooses to a Private Use Area codepoint.

Could we discuss please whether it would be a good idea for that section to be reworded?

William Overington

18 February 2013
Received on Mon Feb 18 2013 - 07:46:40 CST

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