01.30.08

Geneva’s BRM Had Failed Before It Even Got Started

Posted in IBM, ISO, Microsoft, Open XML at 9:05 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

The previous post hopefully gave you a glimpse into Microsoft's own admission that it needs to stack panels.

About a week ago we showed and explained why the BRM in Geneva already seems like a bit of a joke (pardon the blunt approach). We later explained why Geneva ought to do something about it.

A new interview (ish) which Andy Updegrove has just published does not give the mind much rest. He talked to one of the chiefs, Alex Brown, and there are signs of fragility.

I found Alex’s last comment particularly interesting from a strategic point of view. As I’ve repeatedly noted in a variety of prior blog entries over the past two years, Microsoft has adopted a high risk strategy by pushing OOXML so aggressively through the Ecma, and then the ISO/IEC JTC1 process. Already, it’s received one set back, in that its failure to gain approval in the first voting period has resulted in much bad press, and a seven month delay (through the expiration of the second consideration period, which will end on March 30).

Based on the interpretation from Groklaw, all in all, this is bad.

[PJ: Uh oh. It's defined in such a way it is subjective. And with Microsoft stacking the deck, it should be quite easy to attain "consensus" as interpreted like this.]

ISO standardMind our evidence which shows that ISO was virtually 'hijacked' by Microsoft. In essence, ISO’s top people left while Microsoft saw them replaced quite conveniently. We also saw that in Massachusetts where Microsoft pressured two consecutive CIOs out of their jobs only to replace them with a Microsoft lobbyist. We saw this in other places, but that would take us astray.

ZDNet UK has published a new short article which you might find interesting because of the paragraph below:

Tsilas [senior director of interoperability and IP policy at Microsoft] is admitting, more explicitly than implicitly, that Microsoft’s profit depends on it controlling standards and that OOXML is a product designed to do exactly that. The mask has slipped and the nature of this particular war is on display. As Ericson, captain of HMS Compass Rose, might say: we are sorry if it is too hard for you, Microsoft.

Well, that’s nothing new (read the quote below).

“It’s a Simple Matter of [Microsoft’s] Commercial Interests!”

–Microsoft’s Doug Mahugh about OOXML in Malaysia

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