[tz] The State of Palestine has adopted the first part of the specification for its time zone
Clive D.W. Feather
clive at davros.org
Mon Jan 24 10:15:53 UTC 2022
Heba Hamad via tz said:
> Dear Sir,
> Hope this email finds you well and wishing you a joyful new year .
> We would like to inform you that The State of Palestine has adopted the
> first part of the specification for its time zone.
> Kindly refer to the attachment below, which includes the specification
> and please provide me with any comments or notes you have regarding
> this specification.
> Ps: Please provide me with any comments you have.
> Sincerely Yours,
> Eng.Heba Hamad
Dear Mr Hamad,
My apologies for the length of time this reply has taken, but here are some
comments on your document.
Page 6 item 2: the second paragraph looks more like a definition of local
time than of UTC. Compare with item 6 on the next page.
Page 7 item 7: while this is the commonest form of "daylight saving time"
or "summer time", as it is usually known in Europe, it is not the only
* Some countries have two switches forward and two back per year, for
example to move back to standard time for Ramadan then forward for the rest
of the summer.
* At least historically, some places have had two forward shifts at
different points in spring and then two backwards shifts at different point
in the autumn.
* Not all shifts are an hour: Lord Howe Island in Australia has a shift of
30 minutes forward in the summer.
* At least one country defines "standard time" as being the time in the
summer, with a shift back to "winter time" in autumn and then forward to
standard time in spring.
* There is at least one historical record where an area put the clocks
forward in winter because of an unusual geography.
You might at least want to delete the words "one hour from standard time".
Page 8: note 1 to entry contradicts the definitions. Item 6 on page 7
implies that "standard time" is a fixed offset from UTC whereas this
implies it isn't.
Page 9 item 1: the range of dates under consideration affects time zones.
The IANA database normally only looks at the situation from 1970 onwards.
Picking other starting dates will affect which time zones exist because
places differed in time before 1970 but not after it. This is why the IANA
database has both Asia/Gaza and Asia/Hebron.
Page 9 item 4: this is a description of the IANA TZ database. It is
possible for other TZ databases to exist and they might not match that
defintion. Also note that updates can be for changes made other than by
political bodies (the IANA TZ database works on what actually happens on
the ground, not what politicians say what happens).
Page 10 item 5: "Government is expected to select these names alone" is,
I'm afraid, false. Each database owner selects these names. The IANA
database normally uses names of the form "continent/city" or
"continent/region/city", but another database might use simple numbers or
randomly allocated four-letter strings instead.
Page 10 item 6: the description doesn't bear any relationship to the
Page 11 first line: is the text beginning "This specification" meant to be
the start of a new item? It doesn't seem to have anything to do with
Page 11 item 1: I'm not clear what the purpose of this item is.
Page 11 item 2: the first paragraph describes the IANA TZ database rules
and other TZ databases may differ. The last sentence of the second
paragraph is not true, I'm afraid, since each TZ author can pick their own
values and accept registrations or other information from anyone.
I suspect you may have got your concepts confused. May I please suggest
==== BEGIN ====
1. Palestine Time Zone
Palestine will use a single time zone.
The State of Palestine is the Palestine Time Zone owner. It has the sole
right to determine:
- the UTC offset for the zone
- the rules for changing this offset at different times of the year
- the names and abbreviations used for the time in Palestine in official
Note: before 2013 Palestine had two time zones using the meaning under
"Fundamental Principles". Therefore some distributions may continue to use
two time zones in order to represent pre-2013 data.
2. Names and abbreviations
Palestine will use the terms and abbreviations "Palestine Standard Time
(PSST)" for the time in Palestine during standard time and "Palestine
Daylight Time (PSDT)" for the time in Palestine during Daylight Savings.
==== END ====
Legal clause: you of course have the right to determine the name used in
official Palestinian documents and the official time used in Palestine.
But you cannot determine the name of the time zone in any given database
because that's decided by the database owner. Note, here, the difference
between your official names (e.g. "PSST"), which you ahve the exclusive
right to decide, and names used by others (e.g. "Asia/Gaza" or "A261"),
which you don't.
Clive D.W. Feather
Clive D.W. Feather | If you lie to the compiler,
Email: clive at davros.org | it will get its revenge.
Web: http://www.davros.org | - Henry Spencer
Mobile: +44 7973 377646
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