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4-3 Regarding the Release of RFC-JP Japanese Page

RFC-JP is a project to provide RFCs in Japanese. Our target is to set up a Web site by the end of September 2000, on which we will publish several RFC translations at this URL:
http://rfc-jp.nic.ad.jp/
Once that initial step is completed, we plan to release two to three new translations every month. Features to be provided by this service will include:

  1. Translation and publishing of RFCs
  2. Search functions (English, Japanese)
  3. General information related to RFCs
  4. Information on Internet community
  5. The latest RFC-related information

This article provides you with the significance and aim of this project.

Significance of translation

RFCs are very important documents for Internet administrators and users. However, not everyone who needs the documents is proficient in English. In addition to this obstacle, there is also the very real danger of misunderstanding due to misreading. Many have requested to read RFCs in their own language, and various attempts have been made to meet this need.

Because the Internet has spread to virtually every corner of the Earth,it has become necessary to consider how to establish a process of increasing translations of RFC and sharing the same information with everyone due to a dissemination of proper understanding of RFC. However, as the current system was not designed to translate RFCs into several languages, it is necessary to create a new system that ensures and manages the accuracy of the translations for each language.

In addition to translating and publishing necessary RFCs in Japanese, the RFC-JP project is charged to become a pilot case for creating a better system through various trials and examinations through the process and management of translation. This approach will be taken to advance the current situation regarding translation.

We do not classify the translation of the RFCs as a matter of I18N (internationalization), but a matter of L1ON (localization). Therefore, we believe that the master documents should be standardized in English, with translations in other languages as addendums.

Additionally, we hope to disseminate the know-how accumulated in this way so that people all over the world can read RFCs in their own language.

Issues of translation

Considerations

Translation refers to mapping of one language to another. However, because there cannot be a single mapping relationship between two different languages, there is a possibility that some mistakes may occur during the process. The structural and grammatical differences between English (where the focus is at the beginning of the sentence) and Japanese (the focus is at the end) present potential problems as well.

As a result, there is a need to establish a system that ensures quality of the translations as autors of originals cannnot take full responsibility for accuracy of the contents of translations. A translated version of an RFC is a derivative document of the original, thus the content must be identical to that of the original. How to cope with this is a very critical issue for future processes.

Copyrights

There is a problem related to the copyrights for the RFCs prior to RFC2219. Those RFCs do not include a "full copyright statement". The following statement regarding translations can be found at "rfc-editor/rfc-copyright":

4. Translating RFCs into other languages:

4a. Since wide distribution of RFCs is very desirable, translation into other languages is also desirable. The same requirements and courtesies should be followed in distributing RFCs in translation as would be followed when distributing RFCs in the original language.

This statement infers that translation itself is, if anything, recommended. However, As far as those RFCs do not include "full copylight stelement", authors still hold the copyrights. Therefore, it is necessary to obtain the authors' permissions before they are translated. To make translation legally safe, the gray areas surrounding this matter must be clarified.

With this in mind, we will translate those RFCs that include a "full copyright statement" by including the statement in the translations; as for those RFCs that do not have the statement, we will proceed with the permission of the original authors.

Secondary products

In Japan, when a translation is made voluntarily, the translated document, as a derivative (secondary) work, will have a copyright. For this reason, if we accept contributions of translations, one problem that will occur is that these documents cannot be simply modified or changed by others (even if they are for unification of words and endings, etc.) due to "the right to maintain the principle of identity" as stipulated by Copyright Law. Therefore, for the time being, we will need to translate documents by ourselves and develop a process to improve the level of finished products. For this reason, we cannot accept contributions until this problem is solved. We appreciate your understanding regarding this matter.

On the other hand, as a result of translations, JPNIC itself will have copyrights for the RFC translations as derivative works. RFC-JP will exercise this right to maintain the identity of RFC translations created as the result of our efforts, so that we can avoid confusion which may be caused by distribution of RFC-JPs altered in diffenrent meaning by a third party. This establishment of right will not prevent anyone from creation and release of new translations from the original documents.

Regarding the Service

This service can be developed by the contributions of users. Translation will be done deliberately, and only those that have passed technical accuracy checks will be published. Unfortunately, this does not guarantee that the translations are perfect. RFC-JP will be making every effort to ensure that the information in the translations is correct, but we would also appreciate it if you understand that this will not guarantee quality, including accuracy. If you find any technical mistakes, please let us know.

When mistakes are found, we will take appropriate action as quickly as possible. Corrections will be controlled by verification numbers internally, but the most recent version of the file will always remain as "rfcxxxx-jp.txt". Translation information will be given at the beginning of the document.

The Japanese translations are not permanent. They may be updated as necessary to correct mistakes or improve accuracy. Therefore, please be sure to obtain the latest version. In addition, please help us to publicize the URL worldwide. URL:http://rfc-jp.nic.ad.jp/

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