[rfc-i] Comments on draft-flanagan-nonascii-03

"Martin J. Dürst" duerst at it.aoyama.ac.jp
Thu Oct 30 00:21:59 PDT 2014


On 2014/10/30 04:01, Ted Lemon wrote:
> On Oct 29, 2014, at 3:19 AM, Martin J. Dürst <duerst at it.aoyama.ac.jp> wrote:
>> As a separate issue, I'd suggest that in the Acknowledgments example, instead of "陈智昌 (William Chan)", we use "William Chan (陈智昌)", because this way, the text flows better. This is also what the W3C or people such as Don Knuth use. Of course if somebody like William prefers "陈智昌 (William Chan)", we can allow that, but it shouldn't be what we suggest.
>
> It seems more than a little bit disrespectful to use the correct spelling of a contributors name as the alternative.   Given that we don't use full names on the title page anyway, I think it would be fine to just present the name in its correct spelling and rely on people to look in the end matter (or even include a drift-over that shows what's in the end matter) rather than this.   But in the acknowledgments section it should definitely be 陈智昌 (William Chan), and not William Chan (陈智昌).

That would be okay for a text written in Chinese. But our texts are 
written in English.

If something is in parentheses, it is supposed to be okay to be left 
out. So if we have
    The following people contributed significant text to early versions
    of this draft: Patrik Fältström (Patrik Faltstrom), 陈智昌 (William
    Chan), and Fred Baker.
it should be okay to change this to
    The following people contributed significant text to early versions
    of this draft: Patrik Fältström, 陈智昌, and Fred Baker.
But this is unfortunately now unreadable (except for people who can read 
Chinese).

Not just unreadable in the sense that it cannot be understood (English 
readers may be able to infer some (no longer relevant) meaning from 
'Baker', but not from 'Fältström'), but unreadable in the sense that 
most readers will have no chance at remembering the name in any way, 
shape, or form. With some effort, they may be able to conclude that two 
renderings of the same name look similar, but only if they see them 
side-by-side.

So in an English text, "William Chan" has to be part of the text, and " 
陈智昌" has to be given as an additional clarification in parentheses. 
Everybody will understand that this is William's original name, so 
there's no disrespect involved. This is why the best way to do things in 
acknowledgments is:
    The following people contributed significant text to early versions
    of this draft: Patrik Fältström, William Chan (陈智昌), and Fred
    Baker.

Please note that there is a difference between Patrik and William, 
because Patrik's name is in Latin script and Willam's name is in 
Chinese. Although for an English reader, the dots on some of the letters 
of Patrik's family name may look strange or confusing, they will still 
read the name, will be able to remember it (without the dots), and won't 
have to work hard to check whether two instances of Fältström are the 
same or not, even if they are written in completely different fonts.

This is the same as it would be for Japanese names in a Chinese text or 
Chinese names in a Japanese text (as opposed to Western names).

By the way, the same should also apply to authors' names at the top. It 
should be
                                                             P. Fältström
                                                            Tele2/Swipnet
                                                    William Chan (陈智昌)
                                                                June 1999

Regards,   Martin.


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