07.11.08

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ISO Bites Its Tongue

Posted in ISO, Microsoft, Open XML, Standard at 1:47 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“I have lost my sleep and peace of mind for last two months over these distasteful activities by Microsoft.”

Professor Deepak Phatak

Ever since that leak came out, we have published three cumulative posts [1, 2, 3] that summarise preliminary analyses. As details continue to trickle, ISO is approached not necessarily for its final decision but merely for a confirmation of the legitimacy of the leaks. Here is ISO’s response (remember that ISO is a systematic denier, alongside Microsoft). Nothing has changed, based on the Register.

ISO refuses to discuss the leak.

Our indecision is final

“ISO and IEC prefer not to comment on whether internal documents said to originate from the two organisations and posted on Web blogs as ‘leaked information’ are authentic or not,” ISO communications manager Roger Frost emailed us yesterday.

”No decision on the appeals has been made. The current situation is that the ISO secretary-general and the IEC general secretary have submitted the appeals, with their analysis, to the ISO Technical Management Board and the IEC Standardisation Management Board who will decide by mid August whether the appeals should be further processed or not.”

Serial deniers. To be a tad sarcastic, maybe they just need some more time to prepare the Big Lie and make it sound credible. They hope to escape this with minimal damage to its already-stagnant reputation.

It’s pretty much the same with Market Watch, which chose to quote Andy Updegrove because ISO seems mum.

Representatives for both the ISO and IEC did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Andrew Updegrove, an attorney with Gesmer Updegrove LLP who has closely followed the Open XML debate, said the executives’ recommendations “demonstrate the very limited degree to which decisions made by ISO/IEC can be appealed, no matter how ill-considered they may be considered to have been by those that have participated in the process.”

ISO knows what it did. People who fled ISO knew far too well what had happened. Some even spoke out about it, but your eyes were not meant to see it.

“This year WG1 have had another major development that has made it almost impossible to continue with our work within ISO. The influx of P members whose only interest is the fast-tracking of ECMA 376 as ISO 29500 has led to the failure of a number of key ballots. Though P members are required to vote, 50% of our current members, and some 66% of our new members, blatantly ignore this rule despite weekly email reminders and reminders on our website. As ISO require at least 50% of P members to vote before they start to count the votes we have had to reballot standards that should have been passed and completed their publication stages at Kyoto. This delay will mean that these standards will appear on the list of WG1 standards that have not been produced within the time limits set by ISO, despite our best efforts.

The disparity of rules for PAS, Fast-Track and ISO committee generated standards is fast making ISO a laughing stock in IT circles. The days of open standards development are fast disappearing. Instead we are getting “standardization by corporation”, something I have been fighting against for the 20 years I have served on ISO committees. I am glad to be retiring before the situation becomes impossible. I wish my colleagues every success for their future efforts, which I sincerely hope will not prove to be as wasted as I fear they could be.”

Martin Bryan, ISO ‘Escapee’
Formerly Convenor, ISO/IEC JTC1/SC34 WG1

I sold out

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