[Json] Advice on registering JSON Lines (not JSON) as IANA Media Type

"Hlavina, Wratko (NIH/NLM/NCBI) [E]" <whlavina@ncbi.nlm.nih.gov> Wed, 30 December 2020 16:58 UTC

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From: "Hlavina, Wratko (NIH/NLM/NCBI) [E]" <whlavina@ncbi.nlm.nih.gov>
To: "douglas@crockford.com" <douglas@crockford.com>, "nico@cryptonector.com" <nico@cryptonector.com>
CC: "json@ietf.org" <json@ietf.org>
Thread-Topic: Advice on registering JSON Lines (not JSON) as IANA Media Type
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Date: Wed, 30 Dec 2020 16:58:13 +0000
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Subject: [Json] Advice on registering JSON Lines (not JSON) as IANA Media Type
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Hello, Mr. Crockford and Mr. Williams,

I understand you are listed as the authors for the "application/json" and "application/json-seq" IANA Media Types, respectively.
I would like to ask for your advice/help with a related file format, JSON Lines:

https://jsonlines.org

I think there is value in having this format registered as a Standards Tree IANA Media Type.
Per the RFC6838 process, this requires Expert Review and IETF/IESG approval.
Not being a member of those organizations, how can I encourage such registration?

Motivation:

Unfortunately, JSON Lines is not valid JSON (technically) and is different from JSON Text Sequences.
However, JSON Lines is a frequently used file format; for example, it is used by many database products, including Cloud services like AWS Athena, Snowflake, and others.

Since it is not valid JSON, using "application/json" as media type leads to processing failures and mishandling.
Since it uses the newline as separator, without RS Unicode Information Separator Two record separators, "application/json-seq" is not a substitute Media Type, and the ecosystem of tools do not, in general, support JSON Text Sequences format.

In principle, good JSON programming libraries should allow streamed processing of JSON content, both in emitting it and in reading it, but in practice, libraries for JSON tend to require an entire JSON object to be held in memory.
Since HTTP emits one response per request, this implies only a single JSON object per response, if using "application/json" as Media Type; this is problematic for large data.

In my experience, JSON Lines has become a very useful and conventional file format, since it interoperates well with Unix text utilities while remaining highly interoperable with many JSON tools.

Cf.:

  *   RFC6838
  *   https://www.iana.org/assignments/media-types/application/json
  *   https://www.iana.org/assignments/media-types/application/json-seq
  *   https://www.iana.org/assignments/media-types/application/ld+json
  *   https://stackoverflow.com/questions/51690624/json-lines-mime-type
  *   https://github.com/wardi/jsonlines/issues/9

--
Wratko HLAVINA
Sequence Curation, Organization, Enhancements (Technical Program Manager)
NCBI Building 45 Floor 4 Room AS13D-121
Slack: whlavina / Phone: 301-402-9730 / FAX: 301-480-2484 / Calendar: https://bit.ly/2QU2EGB