Irish standards authority disapproves (with comments) OOXML ISO fast track
By bnitz on Sep 03, 2007
Add one more spot of green to the emerald isle in this map from NoOOXML.org
The National Standards Authority of Ireland (NSAI) has voted Disapproval-with Technical Comments in response to Microsoft's OOXML submission to ISO/IEC JTC 1 as a candidate ISO/IEC standard. While Ireland's conditional disapproval might not carry the clout of China's and India's no votes, it is reassuring that such a small country with a big Microsoft presence has the courage to say no. Especially after the OOXML vote fiasco in Sweden demonstrated that it isn't difficult to stuff ballot boxes in Microsoft's favor.
"The SIS has information that indicates that one of the participants in the workgroup participated in the ballot with more than a vote," said the SIS in a statement. "Such a procedure is not compatible with the SIS's rules, which state that each [member] only has one vote."
Microsoft admits encouraging partners to join bodies deciding on ISO recognition of OOXML, but says that a Swedish memo offering rewards for doing so was an erro...
ODF is already much more popular than Microsoft's OOXML. Ireland, along with countries representing at least 1/3 of the world's population and most global IT growth, voted no to adopting Microsoft's alternative standard. Sweden invalidated its suspicious "yes" vote. So this might be a good time to remind Microsoft that it isn’t too late to join Sun, IBM, RedHat, Oracle and others in supporting the preexisting open, clean, free, accessible XML document standard, ODF. Remember, Microsoft was also a late adopter of the standards which made the Internet possible. Microsoft eventually adopted some established standards (TCP/IP, SMTP, IMAP, HTML, Java…) so users of their Windows operating system could make use of this Internet. Adopting these standards didn't cause Microsoft to go out of business. I understand that Microsoft employees might have an aversion to anything Not Invented Here (NIH) as many intelligent engineers do. But ODF is just a friendly XML based document standard. I can't think of any reason why the world's biggest IT monopoly would be afraid of a (mostly harmless) little standard. Can you?