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Open letter to digital standards developers, supporters, and advocates

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| Industry has always depended on standards and traditional industries have
| built their standards as part of a slow, controlled, top-down approach to
| innovation. Industrial-age standards are often heavily patented, complex, and
| large. They can be expensive to implement and therefore are implementable
| only for large established firms.


David Bryant [Interview]

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| Bodom: What is the your think about OGG Vorbis?
| David: I have never used Vorbis myself (because I use WavPack), but I am
| happy to see support for it starting to appear on portables. It's great to
| have a free and open alternative to the "big boys".
| Bodom: What is the your think about the Open Source?
| David: I don't have particularly strong feelings about open source. I think
| open source is great (I use Linux at home), but I think there is nothing
| inherently wrong with commercial software and I even have some ideas for
| software applications I might write and try to sell in the future. However, I
| do feel strongly about open standards. I think that proprietary data and file
| formats are inherently monopolistic and do not serve the public well, and I
| have been happy to see governments (like the state of Massachusetts) start to
| understand the importance of this and move to require that state business be
| done only with open standards.


Microsoft Faces Another Interoperability Complaint in Europe

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| As part of the first of those two investigations, the Commission said it will
| look at whether the Office Open XML document format used by Microsoft Office
| is sufficiently interoperable with competitors' products. BECTA has now sent
| its complaint and evidence to support that investigation, it said.



Becta refers its interoperability complaint to the European Commission

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| Becta welcomes the European Commission's antitrust investigation of Microsoft
| concerning interoperability and confirms it has recently referred its
| interoperability complaint and supporting evidence to the Commission.



BE, NL: governments will not use ISO OOXML

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| Asked to comment on last week's ISO approval for OOXML, Fedict's chief IT
| architect, Peter Strickx, said: "There will have to be multiple
| implementations, in order for us not to become dependent on a single vendor.
| It will also have to be compatible with open standards that we already use,
| in this case Open Document Format ODF."


DE: German Foreign Ministry will not use ISO OOXML

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| In the weeks prior to the second round of votes last September,
| irregularities were reported in the standard committees in many participating
| countries. These claims continued until after the final discussion, in
| February and March this year.
| The European Commission has started an investigation into the allegations.
| The Commission sent a letter to all EU national standards committees in
| Europe, requesting information about the process. Sources at the Commission
| declined to comment, as the investigation is on-going and no official
| position has yet been adopted.


Software wars

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| Allegations of committee-stuffing, the outcome of votes overridden by
| political appointees, a final decision that many involved consider tainted:
| this may sound like a discredited election in some third world country. But
| it is actually a description of an ugly fight over international technical
| standards that wrapped up this week. Microsoft came out on top, but at the
| cost of tarnishing its reputation and the credibility of an important
| back-room process that oils the wheels of many global industries.


Microsoft Plummets, Retail Falls While Beauty Gains in CoreBrand 2007 Brand
Power Rankings

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| The annual "CoreBrand Brand Power 100" Branding Index(R) of 1,200 US
| corporations ranks Coca-Cola Company and Johnson & Johnson at #1 and #2
| respectively, unchanged since 2004. Meanwhile, Microsoft's corporate brand
| declined in stunning fashion over the past four years, falling from 11 in
| 2004 to 59 in 2007 Microsoft, a decline of 48 places!



Martin Bryan: we are getting “standardization by corporation”

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| A November informative report of Martin Bryan, Convenor, ISO/IEC JTC1/SC34
| WG1 highlights the fallout of the ECMA-376 fast-track process for ISO. He
| says he is 'glad to be retiring before the situation becomes impossible'
| [...]
| In what is an astonishingly outspoken report, Martin Bryan, Convenor, ISO/IEC
| JTC1/SC34 WG1 has given us insight into the total mess that Microsoft/ECMA
| have caused during their scandalous, underhand and unremitting attempts to
| get - what is a very poorly written specification {i.e. DIS 29500 aka OOXML,
| AR} - approved as an ISO standard. …


Dysfunctional ISO - Courtesy of Microsoft


Microsoft accused of stacking ISO committee

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| In a memo sent following his last meeting as head of the working group on
| WG1, which is handling Microsoft’s application to make the Word format an ISO
| standard as ECMA 376, outgoing Governor Martin Bryan (above), an expert on
| SGML and XML, accused the company of stacking his group.


EU Commission Investigating Microsoft's MSOOXML Push

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| I hope they think to investigate the smear campaigns that seem to always
| happen to anyone on the other side from Microsoft. What happened to Peter
| Quinn was by no means unique.


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| ...we should take the lead in establishing a common
| approach to UI and to interoperability (of which OLE is only a part). Our
| efforts to date are focussed too much on our own apps, and only incidentally
| on the rest of the industry. We want to own these standards, so we should
| not participate in standards groups. Rather, we should call 'to me' to the
| ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
| industry and set a standard that works now and is for everyone's
| benefit. We are large enough that this can work...

* * * * * * * * * * * * -- Microsoft, internal memo

* * * * * * * * * * * * http://www.os2site.com/sw/info/comes/px09509.zip
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