From SPARQL Working Group
Thank you for your comments on the use of CSV for SPARQL results.
The goals for the TSV and CSV formats are slightly different.
The TSV format is a faithful representation of the data, including RDF details such as datatypes and distinguishing IRIs from literals. To work with the TSV format requires some level of RDF parsing to extract the information.
The CSV format aims at delivering data to applications, such as spreadsheets, without the need for parsing RDF detailsm and leaving it to the application to decide on the data format. For example, fields in the CSV file that look like numbers are often treated as numbers, including formatting and alignment in a spreadsheet. This duck-typing appraoch is a different style to RDF.
As file formats, aside from their use for SPARQL, TSV and CSV are very similar and tools often support both. There less value making their use with SPARQL results cover the same use case of recording RDF-specific details when one can be used for that and the other for presentation in non-RDF aware applications.
For testing the CSV, the WG has arranged that the tests use conanocial forms for data and results. This is in the hope that simply converting to strings in the test suite will enable the test of the test harness to handle the results equality testing.
We would be grateful if you would acknowledge that your comment has been answered by sending a reply to this mailing list.
Andy On behalf of SPARQL-WG