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ISO Puts OOXML On Hold 138

Posted by kdawson
from the system-is-working dept.
schliz alerts us that ISO, in response to the four appeals (Venezuela, India, Brazil, South Africa) filed in recent weeks, has put the OOXML standardization process on hold. Here is ISO's press release, which says that ISO/IEC DIS 29500 will not be published for at least "several months" while the appeals process goes forward.
Update: 06/11 10:13 GMT by KD : Reader Alsee points out that the fourth officially recognized appealing country is Venezuela, not Denmark as originally stated. The protests of Denmark and Norway are being disregarded, as they do not come from the administrative heads of their national organizations.
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ISO Puts OOXML On Hold

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  • Wow (Score:4, Interesting)

    by sheepweevil (1036936) on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @06:18PM (#23737145) Homepage
    Maybe the ISO hasn't been bought off totally. They actually made a rational decision about OOXML.
    • Re:Wow (Score:5, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @06:24PM (#23737263)
      They didnt make any "decision" at all. From TFA:

      According to the ISO/IEC rules, a document which is the subject of an appeal cannot be published as an ISO/IEC International Standard while the appeal is going on.
      They're just doing what they have to.
      • Minor correction. (Score:5, Insightful)

        by khasim (1285) <brandioch.conner@gmail.com> on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @06:32PM (#23737401)

        They're just doing what they have to.
        Not even that.

        This could all be another fake "evaluation" like the others were.

        Just because they appear to be going through the steps that they're required to ... doesn't mean that they're still not bought and paid for.

        Until ISO can PUBLICLY state the errors that were made and WHO made those "errors" AND take action against those individuals they can not be trusted. Not even to follow the procedures that their own rules require of them.

        They didn't follow them when they were fast-tracking this. There is no reason to believe that this time will be any different.

        • by thermian (1267986) on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @07:05PM (#23737887)
          Alas I fear I cannot. I find myself tending towards the belief that Microsoft will stop at nothing to get their ISO standard assigned, even if it means the destruction of the credibility of ISO itself.

          Mind you, if ISO is so vulnerable this does beg the question 'is it still relevant?'
          • by TrixX (187353) on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @07:20PM (#23738113) Homepage Journal
            Mind you, if ISO is so vulnerable this does beg the question 'is it still relevant?'

            Perhaps not for you and me, but as long as people in decision-making positions consider "ISO standard" as relevant, it is automatically relevant.

            • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

              by raddan (519638)
              Does anyone here know if adoption of ISO standards have any insurance/liability implications? In my experience, those are the only two words that management actually listen to. E.g., Using UL-approved devices limit your liability to some extent, because people trust their judgment. Bad ISO standards undermine that trust, but if there are no repercussions for using bad standards, then I do not see how their relevance would diminish.
              • by wish bot (265150) on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @11:37PM (#23741847)
                It's more of a best practice thing, as the codes tend to be performance based. For example, if I designed a pedestrian bridge to meet the structural codes but something went wrong - it would still be my fault, not ISO's.

                You can think of them as the tested minimum (with generous safety margins!) to meet certain criteria. So they're good as a guide, and non-experts will require the standards to be met to be able to 'certify' something as complete/fit for purpose/etc.

                However, what's at stake is that it is now possible for 'you' to establish an ISO standard that only YOU are capable of implementing. It's not so much that this is a 'bad' standard, but that it's not a standard in anything other than name.

                It shows that industry can control the standards process to their own benefit when it is supposed to be independent and neutral. So, you should have just listened to Microsoft in the first place and bought Office 20xx for the next 10 years because the rep TOLD YOU SO.
                • by Narpak (961733)
                  I think the important part right now is that people and informed politicians try to push the use of Open Source and Free Software in administration, schools, libraries and universities.

                  In Norway it has been decided that ODF will be the official format for delivering assignments at schools, to ensure that parents and students can make use of tools such as Open Office, since it does not require an increased financial commitment from parents. As purchasing MS Office would. Something I find to be a rational d
              • Re: (Score:1, Informative)

                by Anonymous Coward
                For the private sector? The technical problems in OOXML will restrict competition and provide inaccurate mathematical results (risk to organisational data) [robweir.com] , and there are accessibility problems which causes a non-accessible work place. Those last two might be reasons for the private sector to worry about liability. It's probably too early for insurance ideas about OOXML.

                The public sector has those concerns too (especially accessibility wrt equality/human-rights), but it's also to do with not favouring one

          • by SendBot (29932) on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @07:22PM (#23738143) Homepage Journal

            Mind you, if ISO is so vulnerable this does beg the question 'is it still relevant?'
            Maybe they're just better for things like high voltage electrical connections or things that are otherwise very safety-oriented (read: can catch on fire).

            When it comes to things that could save nation-states guhzillions of dollars and maybe use that money for something more important...

            Steve Ballmer will throw a chair (metaphorically) at anyone who gets in the way of his profits.
          • by zeromorph (1009305) on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @07:31PM (#23738249)

            Mind you, if ISO is so vulnerable this does beg the question 'is it still relevant?'

            No it doesn't. It actually shows how badly needed it is. Otherwise MS wouldn't give a damn and you wouldn't either.

            It does beg several questions though - e.g How can a rational and fair evaluation be assured? How can the decision making be improved, especially in some "underdeveloped" countries, but sadly also in many "developed" ones. How can the national bodies be hardened against lobbying?

          • by rcw-home (122017) on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @07:59PM (#23738631)

            Mind you, if ISO is so vulnerable this does beg the question 'is it still relevant?'

            Of course. Why, ISO is an ISO-9000-compliant organization!

          • I don't think M$ will be eager to put any more effort into this already doomed idea: http://news.zdnet.com/2424-3515_22-202407.html [zdnet.com]

            "Microsoft's decision to add support to Office 2007 for the Open Document Format instead of its own OOXML office file format is due to backwards compatibility issues with OOXML, it has emerged."

            "In Microsoft's announcement, the company said it was adding native support for ODF due to increasing pressure from customers "and because we want to get involved in the maintenance

          • Re: (Score:1, Informative)

            by Anonymous Coward

            Mind you, if ISO is so vulnerable this does beg the question 'is it still relevant?'
            http://www.begthequestion.info/ [begthequestion.info]
      • Re:Wow (Score:5, Informative)

        by Elektroschock (659467) on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @06:32PM (#23737405)
        Not to mention that the interim draft was not made available as mandated by ISO rules because of the failure of the editor to deliver it. The ISO JTC1 Directives demand the meeting report and the final DIS to be distributed within 1 month of the meeting.

        Now Microsoft has a formal excuse for its lazyness to deliver the consolidated text. Blame ISO haha.
      • Re:Wow (Score:4, Interesting)

        by flnca (1022891) on Wednesday June 11, 2008 @07:29AM (#23745209) Journal

        Exactly. And the OOXML standard has already been ratified by ECMA anyway, almost two years ago. There are so many standards that aren't followed, that one more or less really doesn't matter. ;-)

        When I look at the C++ standard, or the POSIX standard -- they're used as guidance, but they aren't implemented by the word, because it's not always possible. The OOXML standard became obsolete the moment Office 2007 was brought to market.

        Standards are often used as a sales argument, and I guess that's what Microsoft was trying to do. To be able to say: "We support standards!" :-D

        • by flnca (1022891)
          Yeah, just think about all the possibilities: All those many incompatible OOXML implementations that are yet to be made! ;-)
    • Re:Wow (Score:5, Interesting)

      by ianare (1132971) on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @06:32PM (#23737399)
      Except no decision has been made yet.

      The two management boards will then decide whether the appeals should be further processed or not.
      They are simply "considering" the appeals. All MS has to do is stack the two management boards (should be at leats partly there already, considering almost all of ISO has been tampered with), and get them to reject the appeals.

      There is only a faint glimmer of hope, a pinhole of light at the end of the tunnel.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Ilgaz (86384)
      They figured that decision could mark their death and setting up a new organisation (like UN started after WW2) so they decided to cool things down a bit.

      They also figured the Big Blue and Sun are very serious, it is not like couple of disgruntled nerds blogging. IBM is older than most of countries in ISO and Sun have huge expertise on how governments work too.

  • Thank god for this. Hopefully it'll be done away with completely and MS will be told where to stick it.
    • by ianare (1132971)
      Somehow I doubt this. If England, France, Germany and China (for example) had made the appeals, I would be more optimistic.
  • GREAT (Score:5, Insightful)

    by anti-human 1 (911677) on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @06:19PM (#23737161) Journal
    "On hold" is nice, but will there be an investigation or backlash regarding how it was passed in the first place? Or has the process of buying a standard just become a cost of doing business?
    • Re:GREAT (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Chris Burke (6130) on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @06:35PM (#23737447) Homepage
      "On hold" is nice, but will there be an investigation or backlash regarding how it was passed in the first place? Or has the process of buying a standard just become a cost of doing business?

      I think it's safe to assume there will be no investigation or backlash. However if OOXML is ultimately rejected as a standard, then it would mean that the attempt to buy a standard failed, thanks to the pressure put on ISO by the states that participate, which ultimately stemmed from organizations in those states who saw what was happening and protested. It would mean that while the ISO process is vulnerable, it is possible to have oversight over its proceedings. No more just coasting and assuming anything that comes into ISO must be okay, but that's probably a good thing that should have been the case all along.

      I'm not saying this will completely save ISO, but it could certainly help.
      • Re:GREAT (Score:4, Funny)

        by roc97007 (608802) on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @07:12PM (#23737987) Journal
        > ...then it would mean that the attempt to buy a standard failed, thanks to the pressure put on ISO by the states that participate, which ultimately stemmed from organizations in those states who saw what was happening and protested.

        ...and that those people need to be sure to look both ways before crossing the street for the next few months...

      • However if OOXML is ultimately rejected as a standard
        As you kind of know it will be in the Court of Public Opinion, irrespective of what the paid toadies do.
        • by cp.tar (871488)

          However if OOXML is ultimately rejected as a standard
          As you kind of know it will be in the Court of Public Opinion, irrespective of what the paid toadies do.

          Nonsense.

          Unfortunately, anything Microsoft spews out becomes a de facto standard in a few years' time anyway. No they're just making it formal.

    • Re:GREAT (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @06:41PM (#23737527)
      I think you misunderstand -- It's still an international standard it's just not published and Ecma/Microsoft/ISO-secretariat have the only copy of the standard.

      This means that 1) ISO are giving Microsoft an unfair advantage over their competitors and 2) national bodies still can't comment on OOXML.

      3 nations appealed out of 88. This is not cause for celebration or a sign that the process is OK. The ISO process is broken and the people who forced this standard through are still in power.

  • by codemachine (245871) on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @06:19PM (#23737169)
    Haha!
    • That was supposed to have a 'Nelson' close tag. I really ought to proofread. Oh well.

      Glad to hear of this decision from ISO. I wonder if MS was anticipating this all along, hence the fact ODF will be included in the next MS Office, while OOXML will not be.
  • by compumike (454538) on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @06:22PM (#23737223) Homepage
    I know everyone's going to make comments about OOXML being not a truly open/free/libre format, but there's something bigger going on...

    Just to get access to published standards themselves on http://www.iso.org/iso/store.htm costs easily $50 to $150 each! Can someone please tell me how that makes any sense at all? How can we have global standards if people can't afford to even read them? Am I the only one who thinks this might be a bit hypocritical?

    --
    Hey code monkey... learn digital electronics! [nerdkits.com]
    • by Chyeld (713439) <.moc.liamg. .ta. .dleyhc.> on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @06:26PM (#23737303)
      Don't worry, that was before they had Microsoft's corporate sponsorship to subsidize the cost of making copies....
    • by clampolo (1159617) on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @06:45PM (#23737585)

      The IEEE are just as bad. They charge an arm and a leg for every one of their standards. Just stick the thing up on the web, you cheap bastards.

      • by jd (1658)
        That is to ensure the developers are completely armless and that the implementations don't have a leg to stand on.
    • Even worse... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by msauve (701917) on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @06:51PM (#23737695)
      are SAE standards, many of which are incorporated into US regulatory law.

      The net effect is that you can't be sure you're legally compliant unless you pay some private organization a tithe.
      • Re:Even worse... (Score:5, Informative)

        by Tacvek (948259) on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @07:38PM (#23738333) Journal
        While you have a point, it is important to realize that the documents are generally available for reference at libraries or other public locations. Indeed the town hall (for local law) or state capitol (for State law) should have any standard referenced by applicable law available for public viewing. In the worst case you just request the document via inter-library loan, or view the mandatory deposited copy at the Library of Congress.
        I do agree though that this is less than ideal, but it is not quite as bad as your post makes it sound.
        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by drinkypoo (153816)
          I would have less problem with this if it were legal to photocopy those works. If you want to do business using one of these specifications, in reality you must pay for them. There is no reason that the specifications should cost more than the cost of distribution.
          • Re: (Score:1, Informative)

            by Anonymous Coward

            There is no reason that the specifications should cost more than the cost of distribution.
            Clearly you're not familiar with the the ISOs business model [holloway.co.nz].
            • by drinkypoo (153816)
              I'm entirely familiar with the ISO's business model. It's the same as that of the police - convince people you're providing a service while you abuse your power to generate revenue.
        • by HiThere (15173)
          Is it still mandatory that a copy be deposited with the Library of Congress? I thought that had been eliminated.
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by NJRoadfan (1254248)
      Just be lucky they aren't basing the price in Euros.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by jhhdk (1120433)
      This is how standards organisations have been financed.
      150$ for a standard of socket sizes for light blubs is petty cash compared to cost of facilities needed to produce them.
      Standards-(organisations) is still mostly concerned with manufacture of physical goods and their thinking heavily influenced by industrial era (as is most of society, most people have no clue what it means to live in the information age).
    • ISO needs money to operate (organizing committee meetings is not free). If all they produce is standards, then the only source of money for maintenance of the organization is charging for the standards.
  • by austin987 (1233720) on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @06:23PM (#23737237)
    In His infinite Noodliness, has touched the ISO with His Noodly Appendage.
  • hurrah! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by apodyopsis (1048476) on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @06:25PM (#23737273)
    I have a nasty thought that "on hold" is ISO speak for "waiting for the fuss to die down".

    But I really hope that there has been enough of a back lash from the knowledgeable and enough of a crammed education on why this matters that this is now too high a profile for it to be swept under the rug.

    Of course the downside of this whole fiasco is that there are now many, many more OOXML implementations out there and planned so this is hardly a complete bust for MS.

    Still here's hoping that common sense prevails, and a bug grateful thank you for all those people who fought it.

    • Re:hurrah! (Score:5, Informative)

      by Enderandrew (866215) <[moc.liamg] [ta] [werdnaredne]> on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @06:28PM (#23737333) Homepage Journal
      All those countries initially voted no with comments. The comments weren't addressed, and then suddenly the standard was fast-tracked and passed.

      The "appeals" will be heard, but I'm not expecting a miracle here.
    • Re:hurrah! (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Chyeld (713439) <.moc.liamg. .ta. .dleyhc.> on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @06:30PM (#23737375)
      Actually "on hold" is more along the lines of "Microsoft has gotten what it wanted and would really like this format to die on the table so it doesn't have to actually implement any of its promises".

      [corporate spin]Oh sure! MS Office 2010 was going to be fully open spec, but the ISO never got around to finalizing OOXML, and we got tired of waiting. So, Hey! Here's a new proprietary format. After all, it's not our fault, we upheld our part of the bargain and released the specs...[/corporate spin]
    • Re:hurrah! (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Elektroschock (659467) on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @06:38PM (#23737487)
      As Microsoft finally announced to switch to ODF and refuses to implement the unpublished OOXML format before adding full ODF support there is really no reason to go on with ISO OOXML. Governments should simply mandate ODF as the XML based document standard format in their own administration. The Netherlands are a perfect example. [ososs.nl] More governments will follow. Microsoft can just embrace the domino effect. Ironically it was the ISO OOXML process that made ODF adoption happen.
    • Re:hurrah! (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @06:42PM (#23737531)
      The largest downside, in my opinion is the resignations from people who have become disenchanted with the ISO.

      These people are the ones we need now more than ever. There is a good Steve Jobs quote that seems appropriate:

      "John Sculley ruined Apple and he ruined it by bringing a set of values to the top of Apple which were corrupt and corrupted some of the top people who were there, drove out some of the ones who were not corruptible, and brought in more corrupt ones..."
    • by Bert64 (520050)
      Except...

      Microsoft are planning to implement ODF *before* they implement OOXML...
      Pretty much everyone else has already implemented ODF...

      Why would anyone consider using OOXML?
  • On Hold... (Score:5, Funny)

    by db32 (862117) on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @06:39PM (#23737503) Journal
    Actually them putting it on hold is compliance with the OOXML specification as written by Microsoft.

    "No Microsoft product shall have the features promised or be released when scheduled".

    So all of you cheering this decision are incredibly misguided. Look a little closer and you will see this is clearly evidence of more MS tampering in the process.
  • by viking80 (697716) on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @06:47PM (#23737605) Journal
    The Norwegian Standards committee was also almost unanimously against the OOXML. Then the Bill & Melinda Gates foundation offered a few hundred million $$ to various pet projects of the Norwegian prime minister such as a Svalbard seed bank http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Svalbard_Global_Seed_Vault [wikipedia.org] as well as vaccination of kids in poor countries.

    To everyones big suprise, the government set aside the No vote, and ruled by fiat that Norway would vote Yes.

    But then again, why care about a petty little standard and some petty corruption when you can save the world.
  • by kiehlster (844523) on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @06:47PM (#23737629) Homepage

    So, Bill, what are we going to do tonight?

    Same thing we do every night, Stevie. Try to take over the world.

  • that's OK (Score:5, Interesting)

    by nguy (1207026) on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @06:48PM (#23737643)
    Since even Microsoft has switched to ODF, that's pretty much a no-brainer :-)
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by louzer (1006689)
      I bet MS ODF file will contain a high res JPEG rendering of the document. This will get the MS fan boys in corporate world think FOSS is incompetent
  • by Cochonou (576531) on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @06:49PM (#23737655) Homepage
    First sentence of TFA:
    Four national standards body members of ISO and IEC - Brazil, India, South Africa and Venezuela - have submitted appeals against the recent approval of ISO/IEC DIS 29500, Information technology - Office Open XML formats, as an ISO/IEC International Standard.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by cyber-vandal (148830)
      We can disregard Venezuela as they are Commmies and enemies of freedom.
      • by Fri13 (963421)
        So then we can disregard USA and many other country because they are countries what rapes freedom and free will.... No wait... you are trying to be funny or then just a stupid...
    • by tqk (413719)
      It only took four countries' standards bodies to get them to ... pause.

      Interesting, if you're a country. "Unless you can find lobbying pals, we're not listening. Call back when you've garnered some support."
  • Is ISO afraid ? (Score:1, Interesting)

    by jeanph01 (700760)
    This is a great news. I think ISO is a bit overwhelmed at the least by the sheer pressure the world is putting on them about OOXML. Neelie Kroes by the way tell them that she can help if they ask : http://europa.eu/rapid/pressReleasesAction.do?reference=SPEECH/08/317 [europa.eu].
  • I don't get the sudden outrage about this. The ISO has ALWAYS been for sale to the highest bidder.
    How do you think we ended up with this Gibibyte/Mebibyte nonsense?
    I am suspicious about several ISO standards in the construction industry myself.
    And ISO 9000 and company?
  • Denmark? (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward
    TFA:
    "Four national standards body members of ISO and IEC - Brazil, India, South Africa and VENEZUELA - have submitted appeals against the recent approval of ISO/IEC DIS 29500 [...] as an ISO/IEC International Standard."

    Summary:
    "[...] ISO, in response to the four appeals (DENMARK, India, Brazil, South Arica) filed in recent weeks [...]"

    Slashdot - as we know and love it. ;)
  • by SplatMan_DK (1035528) * on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @08:45PM (#23739473) Homepage Journal
    Please let us get the facts straight here.

    Denmark did not protest, appeal, or in any way change its official vote. The official Danish ISO vote is controlled by Dansk Standard [www.ds.dk], who voted "Yes" in the final OOXML specification vote (after initially voting "No with comments").

    The reason Denmark keeps sneaking into the list of countries who "appealed" is probably because a local pro-Open Source lobby organization named "Foreningen for Open Source Leverandører i Danmark" (OSL) (their name in English is "The Danish Open Source Business Association") has submitted a protest and that is by many people mistakenly translated into an "official appeal".

    Since the protest is not submitted by Dansk Standard (who holds the official ISO vote) but is in fact from a local lobby organization, the vote can not be considered "official" in any way. And it is important to note in this context, that the official Danish vote is still "Yes".

    The protest is available in Danish [osl.dk] on the OSL website and I also found a copy of the letter in English on Groklaw [groklaw.net] (its not on the OSL website for some reason). The original Groklaw artikle on the subject is here [groklaw.net], in case you want to read the comments yourself.

    The complaint criticises both the way Dansk Standard handled the OOXML approval process and a few formal errors in the ISO process.

    The story was first announced by Computer World Denmark [computerworld.dk] (Danish only, sorry). It was first mentioned on slashdot [slashdot.org] on June 1st where sadly it was also mistakenly described as an "official" protest.

    - Jesper
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by broeman (638571)
      Yes, I applaud the submitter for not RTFA! "Brazil, India, South Africa, and Venezuela have officially filed complaints against the controversial certification of OOXML in expedited proceedings in Geneva." - Venezuela is appearently located in Denmark? Thanks for clearing this up, I wished Denmark officially protested, but sadly it is not the case. The minister for IT has been seen several times involved in stories, where he supports certain companies in the public, and he is pretty IT-illiterate.
    • by Fri13 (963421)

      Since the protest is not submitted by Dansk Standard (who holds the official ISO vote) but is in fact from a local lobby organization, the vote can not be considered "official" in any way. And it is important to note in this context, that the official Danish vote is still "Yes".

      Can you please explain what OSL has paid to goverment or any other organisation, etc... so they are lobby organization? Have they paid hundreds of thousands or millions to someone to get their mind turned what OSL wants?

      • Can you please explain what OSL has paid to goverment or any other organisation, etc... so they are lobby organization? Have they paid hundreds of thousands or millions to someone to get their mind turned what OSL wants?

        You ask this qustion with, I believe, two wrong assumptions:

        • Lobby activity involves large sums of money and/or bribes
        • Lobby activity is bad by definition

        None of that is true.

        Lobby activities are a part of any political landscape and it can be executed without money. Perhaps in the US the most successful lobbyists are using truckloads of money for bribes, expensive dinners, or similar. And perhaps they are paid for their lobbying activities. But that is just because the political landscape in the US has b

        • by Fri13 (963421)

          "Lobbying includes all attempts to influence legislators and officials, whether by other legislators, constituents or organized groups.".

          Actually that is bretty tensile explanation, because if I am good democratic citizen, I would call to my representantive or meet him and disguss about things. It does not make me as lobby-citizen if I like to inform them what is my opinion about the case.

          Other way, everyone would be lobbying everyone and everything when they talk here. Like you are lobbying be because you want to influence my opinion what "lobbying" means.

          That's true that someone can bribe other person with material or power and not just m

          • if I am good democratic citizen, I would call to my representantive or meet him and disguss about things. It does not make me as lobby-citizen if I like to inform them what is my opinion about the case.

            True, but that example does not apply here. I this case a group of people are joining forces in an attempt to influence multiple politicians.

            Like you are lobbying be because you want to influence my opinion what "lobbying" means.

            Your example is flawed. I am not a group of people nor are you a politician. And discussing the meaning of the word "lobbying" is not a political issue.

            So I dont take normal discussion, information sharing, or conversation as lobbying.

            Good, because it is not. So far so good.

            But if I get paid from organisation or group for what I talk and I try to affect things by someone's other's benefits, that is lobbyism.

            As I have stated earlier, lobby activities does not require payment to be involved. The action/concept of lobbying is a part of the political system and it can be conduct

  • s/Denmark/Venezuela/ (Score:5, Informative)

    by Phil Hands (2365) on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @09:36PM (#23740297) Homepage
    There are four appeals, but Denmark's not one of them -- Venezuela is though.

    Denmark are just part of the general howl of protest from people who've looked at the heap of excrement that is DIS 29500 and found it wanting, and/or were in one of the many countries where the behaviour of their National Bodies has made it clear that their local Microsoft lackeys have been interfering with what should be a process focussed on technical merit, not on whether personal gain can be maximised.
    • Denmark are just part of the general howl of protest from people who've looked at the heap of excrement that is DIS 29500 and found it wanting
      Yeah, the poor standard of DIS 29500 is a popular topic of conversation where I am. Just now I popped out for a burger and the guy that gave it to me was complaining about blatant violation of ISO voting procedures.

  • Also if I'm not mistaken Cuba aso had to appeal it's vote due to a issue. and I remember rumors that some countries there was basically 2 votes, yes, and yes with recommendations. http://tech.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=08/03/25/1715222 [slashdot.org]
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 10, 2008 @11:35PM (#23741815)
    seriously. I know the ./ crowd is mainly US folk, but try to get the international stuff right once in a while.
  • I even submitted the story about Venezuela (which was rejected) - yet the summary gets it wronger than one can imagine..
    Denmark?!
    South Arica?!
  • by Alsee (515537) on Wednesday June 11, 2008 @04:27AM (#23744095) Homepage
    Note: grousing about rejected submissions is Offtopic and usually gets moderated that way. It happens, don't take it personally.
    Note: grousing about rejected submissions is Offtopic and usually gets moderated that way. It happens, don't take it personally.

    2008-06-02 19:06:05 Venezuela, Not Denmark, Is Fourth To Appeal OOXML (Index,Microsoft) (rejected)
    The recent report Denmark Becomes Fourth Nation To Protest OOXML [slashdot.org] is a bit of confusion. There have been many many protests, however the IEC acknowledges four appeals- Brazil, India, South Africa and Venezuela [zdnet.co.uk]. It appears the letters from Denmark [groklaw.net] and Norway [slashdot.org] are being disregarded, as they come from the Chairmen of their respective Technical Committees rather than the administrative heads of the national organisations.

    Ok, I won't grouse about rejected submissions. However I damn well will grouse about Slashdot editors re-posting wrong information after getting a submission informing them IT WAS WRONG THE FIRST TIME THEY RAN IT.

    -
    • So just four instead of six? You notice the potential.

      Could be a lot more. Works like this: NB calls on the committee to convene, Microsoft does not sent their guys as they already got their standard, a committee majority decides to file an appeal on procedural matter x. submitted. done.

      Yes guys, these are just the appeals on the BRM. There is much much more to complain about. Happy hacking and let them embrace, extend and extinguish the domino...
  • What's the OpenDocument ISO standard (ISO/IEC 26300:2006) for?
    Isn't OOXML a standard for the same thing?
    Having more than one international standard doesn't make much sense.
    • >>Having more than one international standard doesn't make much sense.

      It is also against ISO policy. But, when msft is involved, who cares about policy, or making sense? It's all about $$.

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