I agree that it may not be very useful to try to express too strict "rules" about the names in English, French, and vernacular. The situation will also change somewhat with the move to the ISO Concept Database. In the new format of ISO 639 "columns" is no longer relevant, but rather a set of information categories, some mandatory, some optional. It should also be possible to add some sort of "typology" to names (at least things like "deprecated", "no longer in use", etc.).
I should think that one important part of the response to the question could be "thank you" for valuable input to the process of finding a new structure of "ISO 639 as database".
Standard Norge / Standards Norway
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Fra: ISO 639 Joint Advisory Committee [mailto:[log in to unmask]] På vegne av Rebecca S Guenther
Sendt: 22. januar 2009 16:48
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Emne: Fwd: Alternate language names
I am forwarding this message since it came as a request, although I don't think this is an easy thing for us to do at this point. I will write the person back after there are some comments from the JAC.