FW: Updated Australian time zone names/strings

Paul Eggert eggert at twinsun.com
Thu Mar 22 18:40:59 UTC 2001

Thanks for your well-researched letter.  May we include extracts from
it in the next version of the tz database?

I recently found a nice summary of the situation in
That summary contains a December 2000 letter from Richard Brittain of
the Australian National Standards Commission endorsing a suggestion
identical to yours.  I had been meaning to bring this up on the tz
list at some point and your letter provides a good opportunity.

Your evidence and Brittain's letter both suggest that we should change
the Australians abbreviations in the tz data.  However, before
changing things, I would like to hear from other Australians about
this, as I don't have personal expertise on this apparently
controversial subject.  Can other Australians please comment, if you
care to?  Thanks.

> From: David J N Begley [mailto:d.begley at uws.edu.au]
> Sent: Thursday, March 22, 2001 3:40 AM
> I can't speak for Mr Mackin's direct experience, but I can most certainly
> contest the assertion that, "We in Australia have _never_ referred to DST as
> `daylight' time" - certainly everyone I know (and myself, of course) have
> always used the term "daylight savings" rather than "summer time".

I suspect that Mr Mackin was referring to the suffix used in time zone
time zone names (e.g. phrases like "Eastern Daylight Time" versus
"Eastern Summer Time"), not the general notion of daylight saving
time.  This may explain part of the discrepancy between his experience
and yours.  Another possible explanation is that Australians may now
be using American time zone terminology more often than previously.

>    - Browse the ABC News site and see the instances of "AEST" and "AEDT"
>      (even "ACST" and "AWST" for central and western standard time) in

ABC News also uses EAT/EAST on occasion; see

The Australian Tranport Safety Bureau uses EST/ESuT; see e.g.
<http://www.basi.gov.au/occurs/ob200000765.htm>.  I assume the "Su"
stands for "Summer".  I've never seen that abbreviation before, but it
is apparently common enough in Australia that Novell supports it; see
<http://www.ithowto.com/Novell/clienttime.htm>.  I even found a few
instances of AEST/AESuT, though none by big organizations; e.g., see

The Tasmanian Department of Education uses AET/AEST; see

AUSLIG, Australia's national mapping agency, uses EST/EDT; see

Clearly there is not a universal consensus, even among single
organizations; all we can do is record the most common and best
current practice (and with luck "most common" == "best current

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