Timezone translations

Mark Davis mark.davis at jtcsv.com
Sat Jun 4 23:04:46 UTC 2005

> You're stuffed then (to put it politely :-).

Not at all -- there was no intent at all to have the message mean anything
like that. We periodically notify this mailing list and others of releases
of CLDR, and we really would like bugs filed for problems that people
notice. And it is best if the people themselves file them, since they then
get notified as to additional commentary on the bug, and as the bug goes
through the process of getting fixed. If you don't want to do that, I can
certainly file on your behalf, using the information you supplied.

In this particular case, however, it is unclear what we should do; that's
why I tried to spell out the issues. It would be very easy for us to change
the summer time to British Summer Time, but for the winter time there is a
problem, because of the ambiguity of the use of the term "GMT".

Here is the problem. You fill in a calendar form for a recurring meeting,
one that is to happen at "10:00 am GMT". If (a) the software maps the "GMT"
to the tzid Europe/London, then the time of that meeting will be 10:00Z in
the winter, and change to 09:00Z in the summer. If (b) the software maps
"GMT" to Etc/GMT, then that meeting will be at 10:00Z all year round. It
can't do both, and doing (a) would cause all kinds of other problems.

If you (or others) have any ideas for handling this, I'd be glad to forward


----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Peter Ilieve" <peter at aldie.co.uk>
To: <tz at lecserver.nci.nih.gov>
Sent: Saturday, June 04, 2005 10:41
Subject: Re: Timezone translations

> On 4 Jun 2005, at 17:41, Mark Davis wrote:
> > Thus we can't use the long name Greenwich Mean Time or the
> > abbreviation GMT
> > to refer to the "British Winter Time", because GMT (= Etc/GMT) is
> > invariant
> > (no daylight/summer time rules). We can, however, use a qualifier,
> > like
> > "Greenwich Mean Time (UK)" or "GMT (UK)".
> You're stuffed then (to put it politely :-).
> I don't really understand what the CLDR is for, but if it is supposed to
> provide text strings that a user in a particular locale would expect
> for things like timezone names and abbreviations then the only
> acceptable
> things for UK users are Greenwich Mean Time / GMT and British Summer
> Time / BST.
> It's hard to argue with the Interpretation Act 1978, which specifies
> Greenwich Mean Time as the UK's legal time. Do you know any MPs?
> Maybe you could get it amended to  add the " (UK)". :-)
>          Peter Ilieve        peter at aldie.co.uk

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