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Bug 7943 - vCard: personal name: more properties
Summary: vCard: personal name: more properties
Alias: None
Product: HTML WG
Classification: Unclassified
Component: pre-LC1 HTML Microdata (editor: Ian Hickson) (show other bugs)
Version: unspecified
Hardware: All All
: P3 enhancement
Target Milestone: ---
Assignee: Ian 'Hixie' Hickson
QA Contact: HTML WG Bugzilla archive list
Depends on:
Reported: 2009-10-18 08:30 UTC by Nick Levinson
Modified: 2010-10-05 13:03 UTC (History)
4 users (show)

See Also:


Description Nick Levinson 2009-10-18 08:30:04 UTC
vCard needs a bit more to decompose an individual's full name into its components to reflect cultures and customs accurately.

--- honorific-infix: The Roman Catholic Church uses them for high-profile leaders and many people address them accordingly. In "His Eminence Aloysius Cardinal Ambrozic" (, "Cardinal" is an honorific, and, being in the middle, is an infix.

--- salutation-name: This would take any literal string, such as "Bartender Bob", that could follow "Dear " in a letter. This is not identical to a nickname, which may be used in other contexts, such as in the middle of a conversation (e.g., "Dear Jane, [paragraph] We asked around, and, frankly, Spike, you know the story. It's what most people want.").

--- salutation-form: Whether to address someone as Ms. Jones or as Ida varies by culture and individual. I suggest that salutation-form specify a format for a given vCard: the value could be "honorific-prefix space family-name" to represent "Ms. Jones", for example. An advantage is that the same string could be pasted into many vCards and, being common, could be defined in an abbreviations list. To that end, I suggest these forms as starters:
--- --- hpsfn: honorific-prefix space family-name
--- --- gn: given-name
--- --- gnfn: given-name family-name (e.g., traditional use of this form by Friends (Quakers))
--- --- hisfn: honorific-infix space family-name
--- --- hpsgn: honorific-prefix space given-name (rare; e.g., hairstylists in U.S.)
--- --- title: title (e.g., "[Dear ]Judge")
--- --- hptitle: honorific-prefix space title (e.g., "[Dear ]Ms. Chief Justice")
--- --- additional salutation-forms not yet defined will be needed for some couples and families (e.g., Dr. and Mrs. or The Example Family)

--- gender: People may likely think it's so similar to much other biographical data that it's likely to lead to expanding vCards far beyond your intention. However, in some cultures it's particularly relevant to naming, as when wives and husbands express their family and middle names differently. It also, in some cultures, is needed for selecting salutations. When given names and honorifics fail to imply gender, an explicit declaration is needed. I suggest case-insensitive values f, m, and u (for unknown). Parsers can have defaults for when no gender or value is specified; better parsers will let their users set the defaults.

--- sort-form: Instead of requiring us to retype an entire string for every vCard's sort-string, increasing errors, let us have a default value for many of these, then change the default for the next batch we type. All that's needed is the class value for family-name, given-name, or, I suppose possibly, additional-name.

This extends the concepts in the vCard RFC and the hCard Microformats standard. I've almost identically expressed these concepts to for their format.

Thank you.

Comment 1 Ian 'Hixie' Hickson 2009-10-18 09:35:03 UTC
Feedback on vCard should go to the IETF. The vCard microdata vocabulary is just a direct port of the vCard vocabulary defined in RFC2426.