Segmentation […] involves breaking up any overlapping elements into smaller pieces that do not overlap. The TEI Guidelines […] describe this method in some detail.
This solution has several disadvantages. One is that one component must be made primary and the other secondary even though there is generally no principled basis for choosing. For example, OSIS users differ (sometimes strongly) on whether the reference hierarchy or the discourse hierarchy should be primary. Also, sometimes a component must be broken up into many pieces, such that it becomes hard to see the whole. Early versions of OSIS used segmentation, and users found such cases inscrutable. Finally, unless the parts of a single component are co-indexed (such as by the TEI “next” and “prev” attribute that link the component’s segments into a list), there is no way to distinguish a segmented component from two components that happen to be adjacent, or that overlap each other in complex ways (DeRose 2004, 4).