First, no one intended to hurt our Japanese collegues. Unless I start putting markup around
all statements, sometimes that happens. Oh well, HumanML has a place on the web after all.
Second, Unicode is not what I was discussing. I was discussing markup. Everyone is free
to invent their own version of XML-like languages given the resources of the SGML Declaration. This would
come at a cost in interoperability and weigh that heavily, but don't ever give up that option. In
fact, you can't get rid of it unless ISO does that. They own SGML. XML is a subset of SGML
owned by the W3C.
Third, "We have had enough of diversity" is a very strong statement. I suspect there are other
opinions about that. I won't get into historical cases. I say only, in my opinion, there are many
things more important than the World Wide Web. We did fine without it and handled diversity.
If the cost of having it is homegenization of culture, it would be time to turn it off. This is not a frat house.
The web and the world can support as much as all concerned are willing to support.
As to the W3C, it is a fine organization. It is one of many that define the working specifications
and standards that we use. To refer to it as one did in a recent article, "the governing body of
the Internet" is to overstate its role and its charter. The more we think in those terms, the
more precarious its position becomes. What is needed is what we have had for the past
number of years, a balance of different organizations that share members and cooperate on
issues of common interest. This maintains diversity, ensures that too much power is not
in one domain, and keeps all of the members healthier than they would be otherwise. Preserve
your options. Keep the commons out of private hands. If you cannot do this, your
governments will do it for you. Don't ever think that isn't reality. It is too much like those
who believed Napster could not be stopped. There are laws and they work.
Members of world governments have bodyguards. Their bosses have complete and
well-devised and zealously protected anonymity. It cannot work any other way.