[tz] *Off topic* A little respect ...

Tim Parenti tim at timtimeonline.com
Mon Jun 24 23:45:48 UTC 2019

On Mon, 24 Jun 2019 at 17:19, <Paul.Koning at dell.com> wrote:

> I wonder if it would be helpful to discuss this more explicitly in the
> THEORY file.

I would support such an endeavor and I think much of your proposed language
is good.  However, I think that while "reflect[ing] 'reality on the
ground'" does succinctly capture the essence of what we're trying to
accomplish into a single phrase, it perhaps still comes off as a bit too
trite, especially for the uninitiated, and therefore warrants a modest
elaboration to help support its meaning.

Specifically, we are interested in how *groups of people* use their notion
of local/civil/jurisdictional time to coordinate and organize.  For
example, if the viewpoint of people in Region X, loyal to Authority A, is
that they are being occupied by Authority B, but everyone in Region X
regardless of allegiance references their local time in terms of the same
authority, then only that authority matters for the purposes of the
timekeeping portions of tz, and the "reality" of civil timekeeping there is
the sole reason behind that decision.  On the contrary, it should be clear
that there are certainly situations in which it can, and indeed does, make
sense to have tz reflect multiple overlapping and differing viewpoints in
its timekeeping data — that is, *if and only if* those viewpoints differ on
civil timekeeping practice in the region in question.  (See Asia/Urumqi,
c.f. Asia/Shanghai for a current example.)

Some distillation of that (perhaps the first sentence) should be enough.  I
should hope we can safely avoid mentioning that we cannot and should not
aim to document the *ad hoc* practices of any possible group of two or more
humans, or that a plurality of a region following a given authority doesn't
necessarily mean that that is the only authority that matters.  The line
must be somewhere in the middle, and must be evaluated (likely
case-by-case) based on factual evidence of actual usage.

Tim Parenti
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