[tz] Reason for removal of several TZ abbreviations

Russ Allbery eagle at eyrie.org
Wed Dec 6 03:18:44 UTC 2017

David Patte ₯ <dpatte at relativedata.com> writes:

> The original reason for the latest discussion was actually precipitaed
> from a request of clarity into why Greenland time zone designator was
> changed from GST/WGST to -3. The original author said that he felt
> GST/WGST was in common usage.

I think the abbreviations are a much different issue than the zone
identifiers, and I'd personally love to see them go away completely (even
ones like PDT).

I know that's too radical to be practical, but those three or four
character abbreviations are traps for the unwary.  There aren't enough
places to put disclaimers about them, people constantly assume they're
unique when they're not, and I've found far, far too many buggy date
parsers that try to extract meaning from them.  Replacing as many of them
as possible with simple offset indications or some other mostly
meaningless string is a service to future programmers as far as I'm

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

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