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Bug#877900: general: en-us locale defaults to 24-hour "military" time on stock install




Control: reassign -1 locales

On Fri, Oct 06, 2017 at 05:29:20PM -0400, debianuser2017_ wrote:
> When Debian 9 is installed with the en-us locale selected, the clock defaults
> to 24 hour time in the resulting install. This is odd because the normal means
> of representing the time in the area covered by en-us is to separate the day
> into two 12-hour segments. (localization issue)

Actually, not two but four discontinuous segments:
12:00am..12:59am
01:00am..11:59am
12:00pm..12:59pm
01:00pm..11:59pm
-- ie, even inside an am/pm value, the order is bizarre.

Also, there's no way to unambigously refer to noon or midnight, or whether a
midnight belongs to the previous or next day, as even the same users often
keep shifting between two possible variants; you can read more about this
horror at:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/12-hour_clock#Confusion_at_noon_and_midnight

But, the above reasons apply mostly to humans.  In a computing context, the
main reasons are:

* 12-hour times don't sort.  Save for some GUIs where display is distinct
  from the internal format, most cases would do it wrong.  And sorting by
  time is something with lots of use.

* en_US (.UTF-8) is used as the default English locale for all places that
  don't have a specific variant (and often even then).  Generally, technical
  users use English as a system locale as translations of computing terms
  tend to be a horror show: for example, in Polish even such a basic term
  as "file" has two versions ("zbiór" — correct, and "plik" — Microsoftese)
  that are not intelligible between some groups of people.  Anything more
  complex gets bad enough that no one bothers translating advanced technical
  documentation or running servers (rather than user-facing systems) in
  pl_PL locale.  And as far as I know, same applies to most languages.

Obviously, this is an abuse, but that's the cost of being the default.  If
we had C.UTF-8 as a first-class locale, this wouldn't be that much an
argument, but currently d-i falls back to en_US for English for most
countries.


The decision belongs to the maintainer (I'm reassigning), but per the above
reasoning, I expect wontfix.


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