[SATLUG] Reversing Loss, Microsoft Wins Open-Format Designation
masterr at gmail.com
Wed Apr 2 12:07:46 CDT 2008
Dang. I was hoping that story was just an April Fool's joke.
With all the known corruption and consistencies in the voting I hope
this gets investigated and reversed, but judging by ISO's reputation
sadly that probably won't happen... grrrr. This is the worst
"standard" they could have approved.
On 4/2/08, Borries Demeler <demeler at biochem.uthscsa.edu> wrote:
> In today's New York Times...what is this, let's vote until we get the
> result we want? This doesn't look good for OpenOffice being accepted as
> the standard.
> Reversing Loss, Microsoft Wins Open-Format Designation
> By KEVIN J. O'BRIEN
> Published: April 2, 2008
> Microsoft has won an international standards designation for its
> open-document format, according to voting results obtained Tuesday,
> apparently ending a divisive yearlong battle with software rivals before
> a global standards-setting organization.
> Microsoft's Office Open XML, a format for interchangeable Web documents,
> was approved by 24 of 32 countries in a core group in a ballot by
> the International Organization for Standardization. Approval by the
> standards-setting body, a nongovernmental network of 157 countries based
> in Geneva, is considered almost certain to influence software spending
> by governments and large companies.
> The tally reversed a loss by Microsoft in first-round voting before an
> 87-nation panel in September, a process that involved blunt lobbying by
> both sides toward members of national standards committees - typically
> made up of technicians, engineers and bureaucrats.
> In the final round of voting, which ended Saturday, three-quarters of the
> core group members - including Britain, Japan, Germany and Switzerland -
> supported Microsoft's standard, according to the results document. Of
> the 87 votes, 10 opposed the standard: Brazil, Canada, China, Cuba,
> Ecuador, India, Iran, New Zealand, South Africa and Venezuela.
> Under organization rules, at least 66 percent of core group members must
> accept a standard for it to be approved, and no more than 25 percent of
> all voting nations can be opposed.
> Roger Frost, a spokesman in Geneva for the standardization group,
> would not confirm that Microsoft's format had been designated, saying
> the organization would disclose the vote Wednesday after informing its
> members. The International Herald Tribune obtained the results from one
> of the delegations contacted by the standardization group.
> Microsoft's request for rapid approval of its standard in early 2007
> produced an intense lobbying campaign by I.B.M. and Sun Microsystems,
> which had helped develop a rival interchangeable document format called
> Open Document Format.
> This rival was the first interchangeable document format to receive
> approval by the standardization group in 2006, and its backers used that
> in selling the technology to governments and large companies. The format
> is now being considered for use by 70 nations.
> Microsoft's push for speedy approval led to objections from many members
> of the standards group. They felt pressure from the company, whose Office
> application suite is the standard on more than 90 percent of computers and
> archives worldwide, according to International Data in Framingham, Mass.
> There were tart remarks even from countries that abstained from the
> vote, like the Netherlands. "This is like someone with six shopping
> carts of food trying to go through the express lane at a supermarket,"
> said Michiel Leenaars, a member of the Dutch delegation. "The end result
> of this will be confusion. The standard is simply too big. There are
> still a lot of questions out there."
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