[tz] [PATCH 0/2] Follow Australian common usage and update CST/CST to CST/CDT and EST/EST to EST/EDT etc [SEC=UNCLASSIFIED]

Russ Allbery rra at stanford.edu
Fri Apr 12 18:09:19 UTC 2013

Kevin Lyda <kevin at ie.suberic.net> writes:

> Just a thought, Australian TV can be readily watched via youtube and
> other sites. A quick look found Australian Sky News clips referring to
> AEST for instance.

I did this research earlier and sent it to the list, but I can see how it
would have gotten lost in the traffic on this topic.  Some news stations
use AEST, some use EST, and quite a few (rather entertainingly) use AEST
and EST both, interchangeably, even on the same page and in the same
contexts.  However, all the ones I found were reliable about using either
AEDT or EDT to refer to summer time.

I'm increasingly of the opinion that the tz database should just use the
most unambiguous abbreviations (AEST/AEDT) even if there isn't a clear
consensus in general usage.  The point that the abbreviations are useless
for software and therefore should be set to whatever is vaguely useful for
people is, I think, the most compelling argument stated to date, there's a
lot of noise in any possible data due to the number of people who are
using the tz database itself to generate the abbreviation, and I don't see
any real benefit to be gained from continuing to use the ambiguous

It's obvious that the AEST/AEDT abbreviations are not going to *confuse*
anyone; they're clearly in widespread use in Australia already.  So they
seem to be a monotonic, if minor, improvement in clarity and usefulness.

Russ Allbery (rra at stanford.edu)             <http://www.eyrie.org/~eagle/>

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