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Thursday, October 30 2014 @ 09:37 AM CDT

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The worse, the better
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, October 24 2007 @ 01:34 AM CDT
"The trouble is that people think ISO is somehow like a law-maker or a policeman, and they get upset that it is doesn't act to defeat monopoly. But ISO is more like a library that accepts books that are properly catalogued from anyone, or a postman that delivers mail to anyone where the mail is properly addressed, or a notary who signs for anyone provided the proper formalities are attended to. You don't want the postman to refuse to deliver mail to Microsoft because it has a monopoly in the OS and desktop applications market and to IBM because of its mainframe monopoly and to Apple because of its music monopoly (if it is at that stage). "

They say: Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity. Never attribute to stupidity that which can be attributed to ignorance.

So I will assume you just didn't know. For your information, ISO indeed has "law-making power". Under WTO rules, governments are legally required to insist on ISO standards in procurement whereever they exist. ISO is not a library which is required to store MS books whenever MS brings them. It is a standards organization that sets legally enforcable standards.

It also seems that you have internalized the MS political line that portraits OOXML vs ODF as a dog-fight between MS and Sun or IBM (whichever is convenient). ODF has a broad and very legitimate userbase which transcends simple MS/IBM fights. But that is a point you would never ever suspect when listening to anyone from MS. You seem to follow this line. People complain here for very good reasons about MS' actions compromizing the ISO. Your reaction is along the line of "there is no criminal evidence, it is just a question of competing companies, and IBM did too". All three are just untrue and irrelevant.

However you slice it, the ISO rules are there to ensure consensus standards. I have still to see anyone tabling any evidence that there was dissent against ODF when it passed ISO. There has been, and still is, massive opposition to MS OOXML. But instead of trying to work out a consensus, as is ISO's aim in life, MS is trying to force OOXML upon ISO. In the course of this, the operation of ISO has been compromized, as has been exemplified here.

This is not a court of law where you are innocent until proven guilty. In the light of quite some documented evidence, we are allowed to assume bad faith from a company convicted for this type of illegal actions many times over. I think anyone who has followed the OOXML saga can be excused from thinking they have been resorting to immoral practises again. Nothing you wrote here or elsewhere has even come close to disproving these suspicions.

So if you are convinced MS has done everything to ensure ISO is able to really evaluate ECMA/MS OOXML on its merrits, and all stakeholders could table their views in an orderly manner, please give us arguments. All this "it's a game and we were not caught breaking the rules" and "<$ENTETY> did too" are not valid arguments for the concerns aired in this, and many other blogs.

Winter
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