I agree. The JAC hasn't made a formal decision (yet), but I guess we should change the reference name of the item "ro" "ron/rum" to "Romanian; Moldavian; Moldovan" and "roumain, moldave".

The ISO 639 standards series has as its general title "Codes for the representation of names of languages". I tend to disagree with the notion that "names of languages" is the actual object of standardization; it is the linguistic entity itself that is the object. In the process of finalization of ISO 639-4 (now submitted to CS for DIS.2 ballot) there may be a chance to re-address this issue. Once you get that document for comment, you should look at the entire title to assess whether it can be improved (which I know it can), and whether some text should be inserted somewhere to capture this important issue.

Best regards,

Håvard Hjulstad
  Standard Norge / Standards Norway
  [log in to unmask]

-----Opprinnelig melding-----
Fra: ISO 639 Joint Advisory Committee [mailto:[log in to unmask]] På vegne av Rebecca S Guenther
Sendt: 3. november 2008 22:23
Til: [log in to unmask]
Emne: Fwd: Re: ISO 639 JAC decision re mo/mol

See forwarded message.  I was expecting some people not to be very happy about this decision. I hope we are not overwhelmed by letters of disagreement. Of course the answer is that we are standardizing the code, not the language name, and that the code is an identifier, not an abbreviation for the language. And that Moldovan is a variant of Romanian and can use the script code for Cyrillic.

If anyone has additional ideas for an explanation of our decision, please let me know.