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Your potentially misleading dates

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  • J JIH
    Dear Sir/Madam at GamesBids.com , I recently visited your website at http://www.gamesbids.com/ and noticed that you are using a confusing date notation. People
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 4, 2002
      Dear Sir/Madam at GamesBids.com ,

      I recently visited your website at http://www.gamesbids.com/ and noticed
      that you are using a confusing date notation.

      People from all over the world are able to visit your site about Olympic bids and there
      are many date formats currently in use. These visitors might not obtain
      full value from the information you are providing if they are not sure
      of the date it represents.

      Did you know of the existence of an international date format defined
      by the International Standards Organisation as ISO 8601 "Data
      elements and interchange formats - Information interchange -
      Representation of dates and times".
      This defines the date in such a way to ensure there is no confusion as
      to which date is represented.

      For example, what date is 27/04/93? Most likely 27th April 1993
      What date is 11/02/98? It could be 11th February 1998 or 2nd November
      1998.
      When we move into the 21st century, it could become even more confusing.
      What about 09/12/18? It could be 9th December 1918 or 2018, or 12th
      September 1918 or 2018.

      What about 2011-07-12? Due to the four number prefix this is instantly
      recognisable as the ISO8601 format so it MUST be the 12th of July 2011.
      No other possibility therefore no possible confusion.

      The basic format is YYYY-MM-DD where YYYY is the year
      in that century, MM is the month in numeric format and DD is the day in
      numeric format. Note that this has the largest time unit on the left
      and decreases in unit size as you move to the right. If you see a four
      number prefix then it must be the century/year first and therefore an
      ISO8601 representation of the date.

      To take this further, adding the time in 24 hour format can give a
      representation of a point in time as a definition decreasing in unit
      size as you move left to right. For example, 1998-12-25 12:23:30

      For further examples and some more convincing arguments to use this
      format please see http://www.saqqara.demon.co.uk/datefmt.htm or join
      the ISO8601 community at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ISO8601/ where
      many people from around the world are trying to standardise on this date
      format.

      If you have any questions about the International Date Format, please
      email me at jusjih@... .

      Since the Olympic Games are for the people worldwide, your use of mm/dd/yy dates may satisfy many
      (but not all) Americans, but it is not going to be readily acceptable to most visitors in the
      world. Please do not assume that only Americans visit your site.

      Thank you for taking the time to read this.

      Regards,

      Justin JIH

      Use ISO 8601 but No MM/DD/YY or AM/PM!
      http://www.geocities.com/jusjih/measure/iso8601.html

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