[tz] Fwd: Timezone issue

Paul Eggert eggert at cs.ucla.edu
Fri Jan 29 21:33:30 UTC 2021

On 1/28/21 1:20 PM, Yaroslav Bilko wrote:

> Ukraine started a official campaign (
> https://mfa.gov.ua/news/67521-correctua-mzs-ukrajini-zvertajetysya-do-svitu-vzhivaj-kyivnotkiev
> ) some time ago to show other countries and mass media that Kyiv is only
> one true name.

Thanks, we're aware of the renaming effort, and this has been a periodic 
source of discussion on the tz mailing list. I recently proposed a 
transition plan for Europe/Kiev → Europe/Kyiv here:


and I suggest you review that email thread. There's no rush; tzdb tends 
to move slowly about these things, due to software compatibility concerns.

By the way, the choice of spelling should not be important to end users, 
as the tzdb spelling is not intended to be visible to them. End users 
should see their preferred spelling which would typically be Київ, but 
could also be Kyiv, Kænugarður, Κίεβο, 基輔, or whatever else is 
appropriate for the user's locale. The Unicode Common Locale Data 
Repository (CLDR) is a good source for these localized names; see 
<http://cldr.unicode.org/>. If your software application is exposing the 
string "Europe/Kiev" to users who prefer a different name, please send 
bug reports mentioning CLDR to the application's developers. Thanks.

> many people say "Kiev" even in Ukraine, but their number is getting
> down very fast.

This is off-topic, but I'm curious about the pronunciation. I assume 
your "Kiev" refers to Russian pronunciation. I'm concerned more about 
pronunciation in English and in Ukrainian.

Wikipedia <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kyiv#cite_note-12> says the 
English-language pronunciation is "/ˈkiːɛv, -ɛf, kiːˈɛv, -ˈɛf/ KEE-ev, 
-⁠ef, kee-EV, -⁠EF, US also /kiːv/ KEEV" (what a mess, huh?) whereas the 
Ukrainian pronunciation is simply [ˈkɪjiu̯] with this audio transcription:


Is that accurate? If so, English-language speakers aren't pronouncing 
the name very closely to Ukrainian even with the "Kyiv" spelling, and 
I'm wondering how to explain proper Ukrainian pronunciation to 
English-language speakers. Should I say that one should pronounce "v" as 
if it were "oo", for example?

Also, there are several dialects of Ukrainian, such as middle Dnieprian 
and central Polissian. Do these dialects all pronounce the city's name 
roughly the same, or are there significant variants? Is the Wikipedia 
audio middle Dnieprian, for example?

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