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Title: "What is Government's Role in IT Standards?"
Author: Terrence Maxwell Executive Director , NYS Forum for Information Resource Management.
Publication Date: June 1 1996
Free/Fee: Free Access
Reads: 7998
Abstract: In his recent book entitled The Road Ahead, Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates argued that government should get out of the standards setting business. He states, &quot;Sometimes governments or committees set standards intended to promote compatibility. These are called 'de jure' standards and have the force of law. Many of the most successful standards, however, are 'de facto': ones the market discovers ... they work, and most customers will stick with those standards unless something dramatically better comes along.&quot; Are Gates' points correct? Should standards be driven by de facto processes, where consumers choose the winners? Or conversely, is there a role for de jure standards, where standards-setting bodies like the IEEE and ANSI establish protocols and practices around which a variety of organizations can develop systems?
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