Scandinavia says “NO!” to OOXML

Scandinavia is an European area that is usually much more aware about IT issues than other regions. That’s why i’m both happy and not surprised to come to know that Denmark, Norway and Sweden showed to be skeptical about Microsoft’s OOXML file-format.

OOXML is now being processed through the national standardization bodies all around the world. Besides the fact that a 6000 pages of specifications of OOXML ‘protocol’  shouldn’t have been fast-tracked, there is the problem that these 6k pages contain some (many) contradictions regarding what ISO would expect from a so-called standard and, moreover, despite it claims itself to be an ‘open’ format, OOXML is far from being it.
This not being enough, lately, the approval process showed to suffer from some (a lot) integrity and corruption criticisms.

Sweden has been a victim (probably nor the first nor the last) of Microsoft’s pressure on companies entitled to vote, indeed at first SIS (Swedish Standard Institute) voted for a yes, with comments, just to declare the vote invalid few days later: irregularities where found. Thus the vote changed to abstention.
Norway Standards goes for a no, with comments since there are too many technical aspects to be cleared before approving such a file format as a standard. This is the pdf of their final conclusions.
Denmark surprised a lot of people, since it was quite known the Dansk Standards position about ODF and OOXML (something on the line "we don’t mind, we accept both"), but yesterday they came out with a nice no, with comments as their official position (press release). The Swedish turn-over on the irregularities change the wind in Denmark, since some pressure by Microsoft are suspected there as well.

There is still a long way until OOXML will be definitely refused or massively corrected, but at least these are some good news.

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