Network Working Group                                       F. Yergeau
Request for Comments: 2070                           Alis Technologies
Category: Standards Track                                     G. Nicol
                                          Electronic Book Technologies
                                                              G. Adams
                                                             M. Duerst
                                                  University of Zurich
                                                          January 1997

Internationalization of the Hypertext Markup Language

Status of this Memo

This document specifies an Internet standards track protocol for the Internet community, and requests discussion and suggestions for improvements. Please refer to the current edition of the "Internet Official Protocol Standards" (STD 1) for the standardization state and status of this protocol. Distribution of this memo is unlimited.


The Hypertext Markup Language (HTML) is a markup language used to create hypertext documents that are platform independent. Initially, the application of HTML on the World Wide Web was seriously restricted by its reliance on the ISO-8859-1 coded character set, which is appropriate only for Western European languages. Despite this restriction, HTML has been widely used with other languages, using other coded character sets or character encodings, at the expense of interoperability.

This document is meant to address the issue of the internationalization (i18n, i followed by 18 letters followed by n) of HTML by extending the specification of HTML and giving additional recommendations for proper internationalization support. A foremost consideration is to make sure that HTML remains a valid application of SGML, while enabling its use with all languages of the world.

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