Talk:Office Open XML/Archive 6

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New content about criticism on the standard / why it is needed

I'm trying again to add properly referenced text about #ISO voting irregularities and other criticism to the introduction. I sincerely hope it will be reasonable enough to reach consensus. To help with that, the content and the references are taken from the article on the standardization process, with some additional editing to adapt the content to the new context. In general, since all the criticism on the standard is at least as relevant as the standard itself, a mention of it in the introduction is needed, otherwise the article would be biased. If all the media coverage against this standard should considered wrong (as I've read in some comments, together with a discussion of the reasons), the issue should be nonetheless discussed and the invalidity of the claims should be explained, with a reference to a reliable source explaining why all those claims are wrong, since many readers have heard of the problem because of the protests. Also, in that case the article on the standardization process should probably be fixed, because it does not have such an explanation. --Blaisorblade (talk) 04:51, 7 January 2009 (UTC)

Fully agree -- I read the article and it does not seem to be NPV specially due to minimizing and or ignoring the (i) controversy of the voting process, (ii) the possible anticompetitive MS intentions behind the formats (iii) the google and (iv) the open source community position. if help needed i will try to do my best--BBird (talk) 11:07, 3 February 2009 (UTC)
I also fully agree. The article needs this material for balance - it really happened, it is documented in reliable sources, it cannot be 'airbrushed' out of history. --Nigelj (talk) 20:42, 3 February 2009 (UTC)

I also agree. The article reads like a Microsoft advertizing. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 24.177.111.68 (talk) 23:28, 3 March 2009 (UTC)

I was away from this article for a long time. It's amazing that there is now absolutely nothing about the voting process having been heavily criticized (to say the least) by numerous sources all other the world. The Standardization paragraph itself is really misleading. Also, I remember that there were more critics before, but they were repeatedly deleted over time. Hervegirod (talk) 00:26, 4 March 2009 (UTC)

My attempt at adding some balance to this article by inserting a reference to the controversy surrounding the voting process in ECMA and ISO is headed for failure. I am being warned about edit warring. It looks like the Microsoft people is winning. This is really too bad. Maybe somebody else can pick up the torch? —Preceding unsigned comment added by 24.177.111.68 (talk) 15:53, 16 March 2009 (UTC)

Sadly your persistence in adding this text is exceeded by the resident editors' persistence in removing it again. I think the answer is to come to some consensus that this article is sadly, sadly biased and that the neutrality is disputed. If we can at least agree on that much (and it amazes me that it's so difficult) then we can discuss what concerns need to be addressed before the neutrality tag can be removed again. Just adding and deleting text doesn't seem to achieve much - the revert button is on a hair trigger here. Thrapper (talk) 23:10, 19 March 2009 (UTC)

Confusing Formatting?

This indented text:

   Microsoft irrevocably promises not to assert any Microsoft Necessary Claims against you for making, using, selling, offering for sale, importing or distributing any implementation to the extent it conforms to a Covered Specification

Has this text "subject to certain restrictions." on its own line not indented. Is that text part of the quote or not? or is it intending to mean that the quote is "subject to certain restrictions"? 71.178.10.40 (talk) 22:01, 7 April 2008 (UTC)

The latter. That the quote is "subject to certain restrictions." WalterGR (talk | contributions) 23:57, 11 April 2008 (UTC)

This article is now becoming a bit of a hot potato. I, along with others, believe that there should be mention of the (alleged) irregularities in the voting process in ECMA and ISO. One person keeps deleting that reference.

Supporting Specification vs Reading or Writing Format

There seems to be some confusion, both in the Article and in the discussion, between two slightly different ideas:

  • Supporting a specification in the sense of approving of it.
  • Supporting a format in the sense of reading or writing a subset of it.

To illustrate, suppose a programmer writes programs in C, and the statements he uses happen to be a subset of the language defined by the C99 standard. Is the programmer supporting the standard or the language? In most cases, only the language. It's quite possible for the programmer to have learned to write C programs from a textbook without even knowing that any standard even exists.

Taking this example a little further, note that books that describe the C standard, and books that teach how to write C code, are almost always entirely different books.

When a document-handling program reads or writes a document in a format that appears to be a subset of the language defined by the OOXML would-be standard, does that document-handling program support the OOXML format, or the OOXML standard? In most cases, only the format, with with only a limited meaning of "supports". The author of the program may choose to read or write the format while still being opposed to the standard itself.

The Article begins by saying, "Office Open XML...is an XML-based file format specification." Then it confuses the issue later on by including a section "Application support" in which a large number of applications are listed that are said to "support" OOXML in various ways. The casual reader will have difficulty distinguishing between who supports the specification and who happens to read or write a subset of the document format.

I think this distinction ought to be made more clear, both in the Article and in this discussion. A person may support a subset of the format and still oppose the specification. Or a person may support the specification, while not using, or supporting use of, the format itself.

Rahul (talk) 07:02, 22 March 2008 (UTC)

It's a good point. However, I think it's clear from context what's meant by phrases like
  • "Microsoft supports OOXML."
  • "Microsoft Office 2008 for Mac supports OOXML."
  • "Foundation for a Free Information Infrastructure does not support OOXML."
Are there specific instances in the text that are ambiguous? WalterGR (talk | contributions) 11:16, 12 April 2008 (UTC)

Archive #5

User:Kilz has stated that he is taking a break from Wikipedia. Therefore, I have archived past discussion content into archive page #5.

If I have archived any discussion that you feel still needs to be resolved, please re-state the discussion here.

Thanks, WalterGR (talk | contributions) 10:15, 22 March 2008 (UTC)

Thats sad, as soon as you think Im not here, you hide it all so no one sees the issues. I recommend anyone new read the archives. Kilz (talk) 21:26, 22 March 2008 (UTC)
A comment via Wikipedia:Wikiquette alerts: I think the discussion has descended into jargon-riddled wrangling where it's impossible to discern the issues (if there ever were any). It would help a lot if both User:HAl and User:Kilz took a break. Remember that you're creating an encyclopedia for the general reader who doesn't care about disputes between XML wank #1 vs XML wank #2. Gordonofcartoon (talk) 02:26, 23 March 2008 (UTC)
Oh, anyone new should absolutely read the archives. That should be standard practice before editing any article.
Kilz was the only user arguing his points. And given that Kilz said he was taking a break, I thought it made sense to move his arguments to the archive page.
Now, here's the real question: did I move all of the content from here to Archive 5 verbatim, or did I subtly manipulate it to make particular users look good and other users look bad and to push my POV?? WalterGR (talk | contributions) 03:27, 23 March 2008 (UTC)

Move OSP related stuff

I'd like to move some of the OSP licensing discussion to the appropriate Microsoft Open Specification Promise article. Specifically the SFLC statement and the expert views opinions. The issue is brought up in the office open xml standardization proces but is in fact relavant to the OSP licensing and other patent covenant/promise types of licensing and is better suited in the OSP article. hAl (talk) 13:13, 22 March 2008 (UTC)

I may be taking a break, but I'm not insane. You know full well that the sflc statement was aboiut ooxml. http://www.softwarefreedom.org/news/2008/mar/12/osp-gpl/ Leave it on the page hal. Kilz (talk) 21:22, 22 March 2008 (UTC)

As except for the sockpuppeteer there seem to be no objections I have already added the info to the OSP article so it can be looked at before removing it from this article. hAl (talk) 15:28, 25 March 2008 (UTC)

You Ad hominem argument does not matter. There is no consensus WP:CON, I refer you to WP:PRACTICAL specificly, to move the material, or remove it from this article. There is nothing that says it cant be on both. You have chosen to use your biased original research form on the Open Specification Promise page. Do not remove a referenced section from this page that clearly is about ooxml. Kilz (talk) 18:04, 25 March 2008 (UTC)
Well, hAl, register my objection to your moving pertinent information - I am a separate editor objecting - jonathan888

What is the history of DrawingML

It was said (see archive 5) that DrawingML makes up for a considerable part of the lenght 6000 page specification.

It would be good to tell people if it is a Microsoft made up thing or if it relies on existing standards.

Is it used outside Microsoft at all?

What are it's advantages? -- HJH —Preceding unsigned comment added by 83.229.69.195 (talk) 17:40, 18 March 2008 (UTC)

I am not to good in the exact graphics stuff but I found this for you:
Technical analysis between DrawingML and SVG.zip.
Open XML Explained e-book (With a chapter on drawingML) I hope it gives you some info. hAl (talk) 21:57, 31 March 2008 (UTC)
Fine, thank you for the links. But what about the other questions? For how much of the specfication does DrawingML account for? What reason does Microsoft put forward to come up with their own non SVG drawing language? (Of course there is the now well known fact that their business model relies on vendor-lock-in through file formats and seemingly this goes on in an "open" specification.) If you could provide more insight on this that would be fine. --HJH —Preceding unsigned comment added by 41.210.25.29 (talk) 11:27, 16 April 2008 (UTC)
You should ask those questions to Microsoft rather than here. However I would guess that seeing as the the technical analyis link above shows quite big differences between SVG and DrawingML probalby SVG is just not enough to cover the features that are already present in Office. Also I am not sure if you could mix SVG objects and other office xml tags (for instance revision tags). And it might also be that SVG is ok more as a presentation format than an editable format as on webpages graphics object are only viewed where in Office people are very likely to edit graphical objects. hAl (talk) 21:50, 16 April 2008 (UTC)

ISO voting irregularities

The the information regarding voting irregularities surrounding OOXML's quest for ISO standardization has been moved to a separate article about OOXML standardization. However, this is one of the most intriguing aspects of OOXML, and the issue the format is most famous for. Although the other article can contain extensive detail about the allegations of irregularities and scandal, there still needs to be mention of it in this article, both 1 line in the intro, and 1 paragraph in the standardization section. Regards, Lester 19:59, 31 March 2008 (UTC)

No actually is not essential for the format itself. It is something fully tied to the standardization proces but not the the format itself and is descriptive of behaviour around the format and opinionated 'news' surrounding the parties involved in the standardization but it is not very relevant to the format itself. The so called irregularities stories look like they are 90% opponents stories who did not get their preferred voting result in their country. hAl (talk) 21:31, 31 March 2008 (UTC)
We shouldn't let Standardization of Office Open XML be a POV fork of this article, though. There might be room in this article to talk about the two months allowed for appeals from NBs & there is probably room for criticisms specifically raised about the format (rather than the process) that are currently in the other article. --Karnesky (talk) 21:45, 2 April 2008 (UTC)

There are still massive allegations of vote rigging against Microsoft (short summary here). There is an ongoing antitrust EU investigation. Given the amount of well-founded criticism against Microsoft's practices and ISO's collusion, as well as criticism of OOXML itself (that it may not be implementable by anyone except Microsoft), I find it very biased to omit these completely from the main article.--87.162.60.222 (talk) 20:21, 3 April 2008 (UTC)

The key word in your comment is "allegations". Allegations are, by their nature, POV. Unless proven, they are not fact, and only facts belong in an encyclopedia with the possible exception of specific cases where the allegations themselves are notable, in which case said allegations would have their own article if they meet notability guidelines. An example of a notable allegation IMO would be conspiracy theories in the assasination of JFK or Allegations of vote tampering in the 2000 US election. In both cases, they are notable as entities in their own right, and long after the close of investigations into the events, so they are unlikely to be proven without new evidence. 12.214.250.176 (talk) 10:03, 22 April 2008 (UTC)
I agree that allegations should normally not be heavily covered in a wiki article as anyone can allege anyone of anything. In this particular case however, these allegations are the main reason for the majority of the public even knowing about OOXML. Do a search on OOXML on Google News for example and decide for yourself what the standard is known for to the world. The allegations come from many and respectable media sources, the European Commission has started an antitrust investigation and the controversy involves a highly respected independent standardization organisation, the ISO. All this make the allegations very notable, if not the most notable part of the whole subject. CheesePlease NL (talk) 10:40, 21 September 2008 (UTC)

I think there should be a link to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Standardization_of_Office_Open_XML in both the opening summery and the Background sub heading. Laughton.andrew (talk) 12:14, 7 April 2008 (UTC)

Of course there should be a link to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Standardization_of_Office_Open_XML in this article. Once again Wikipedia is trying to paste over the truth, something it does more frequently with each passing day, aimlessly throwing out their tired POV claim whenever they don't want the truth to be told. Failing to make proper mention of the facts in the OOXML entry only puts Wikipedia in the same category as the old media. Neglecting critical pieces of information is as bad a lying. Put yourself in the shoes of someone who has heard about OOXML and wants to learn more. Their first point of information is this entry, and unless they were to know beforehand about the growing controversy they would think from reading this article that OOXML is sailing along merrily through the standardization process. Shame on Wikipedia for always trying to avoid the truth. What a disgrace. Snieckus (talk) 17:21, 3 June 2008 (UTC)

OOXML is primarily known to the public because of the supposed ISO voting irregularities it spawned. Not showing this information very prominently in the article is inserting heavy bias. CheesePlease NL (talk) 08:45, 21 September 2008 (UTC)

You represent the public ??? I would rather think OOXML is mostly known trough the introduction of a new default format in MS Office 2007 which has sold many millions of copies. And to add to that 'supposed irregularities' are not something that is remotly encyclopic at all. hAl (talk) 11:44, 21 September 2008 (UTC)
A well-referenced summary of this discussion definitely is appropriate in this article, otherwise it may seem as if the forking of any discussion of these matters into a much more obscure article could be seen as a POV fork, or in other words an attempt by some authors to keep this article 'pristine' and free from criticism, in contravention of WP policies. --Nigelj (talk) 12:32, 21 September 2008 (UTC)
This irregularities issues discusion is mostly made up by anti OOXML campaigners and has never found to have any basis in formal protest. Adding it to the article whilst having been found not to have factual basis or having been concluded by every official standardization related committee to be normal proces and not irregularities is ridiculous. It suggest that shoulting hard anough that soemthing is not right makes it not right even though no real evidence of inpropriety has been found to be truly the case. hAl (talk) 14:22, 21 September 2008 (UTC)
The point is that the article, as it now stands, does not even mention that there is such a thing as an "anti OOXML campaigner", yet there are a great many, as evidenced above by others. That is clearly a WP:POV whitewash by MS, it's agents and campaigners. --Nigelj (talk) 15:26, 21 September 2008 (UTC)
I agree with Nigelj, it is contrary to wikipedia policy to remove relevant facts on the subject; this is clearly WP:POV. Beside, it is completely out of wikipedia scope to decide whether or not the irregularities claimed by who hAl calls "anti OOXML campaigners" are valid or not - furthermore editors are not allowed to claim that the claims are not valid if they don't find reliable and not primary sources which state it (BTW, you may be aware that ISO is a primary source). It suffice to wikipedia to say that information about these protests was coming from reliable and not primary sources, which is clearly the case here. One last point: "having been concluded by every official standardization related committee to be normal process and not irregularities is ridiculous." ? Apparently hAl is wrong, look for Consegi declaration, but maybe he will judge all by himself that it is not reliable too ? Hervegirod (talk) 16:58, 21 September 2008 (UTC)
Given that it's been covered by Reuters, that's a reliable source that there are issues under discussion. These aspects should be covered in the article. . . dave souza, talk 20:41, 21 September 2008 (UTC)
That article is just another example of the bad info that is spread. Reliable it certainly is not. It suggests 6 ISO members are disagreeing with certain appeals having been found without enough merit. However it are not 6 ISO members but 6 state appointed Open source evangelists present at an open source conference that are stating dissent about the ooxml standardization by signing a statement. Wow, hold the news, OSS supporters oppose a format used by Microsoft. Actually the actual ISO member organisations from those countries have not stated anything similar, and certainly not dissent with the descisions be the ISO board and IEC board as far as I know. Actually when there were formal appeals at ISO/IEC by 4 iso members they were correctly present in the article. After they were fully dismissed, and not followed up upon, the info had no more relevance and was subsequently removed. hAl (talk) 07:55, 22 September 2008 (UTC)
I note your assertions, which are original research and have no place in the encyclopedia. The article has been published and presents a notable view which should be shown in the article in accordance with WP:NPOV. If you wish to present an opposing view dismissing the views shown in that article and in other publications presenting various aspects of the issue, then you must show sources for verification of your views. Mere assertions don't cut it. . dave souza, talk 08:47, 22 September 2008 (UTC)
You do not understand the concept of original research. Editors are not ment to add OR in the article but I am not doing that. I am stating factual information on a talk page that is easy to find on the net if you cared on verifying it. I do not feel any need to source it here because it has not been asked and is no requirement for sourcing info on talk pages. And as for the reuters article: If a notable view is factually wrong it can be dismissed and removed from the article. The article Reuters states in its title something about ISO members questioning ISO but then goes on to tell a story about the consegi declaration which is a declaration created at the consegi open source meeting by government open source representatives from several countries and has nothing to do with any statments form ISO memberorganisations. Those are not personal assertions but very evident facts which are easy verifiable. It however is sad that Reuters completly misrepresents those facts. I have no wish to present an opposing view but I will remove any such factually incorrect information no matter what the source is. So I would not remove it for lack of notability but because of blatant errors in the information that is contained in the article. hAl (talk) 12:09, 22 September 2008 (UTC)
No, Hal, you seems to have misunderstood the concept of OR vs verifiable facts: If you believe that notable sources such as Reuters or the Consegi declaration are wrong, or ill-informed, or biased, or whatever, that is irrelevant, no matter how vehemently you believe or argue it. If, however, you find equally notable and verifiable sources that say these sources are wrong, then that is something we can use in the article. We are not here as antagonists in a personal argument, but as fellow-contributors to an encyclopedia article. Removing things that you personally or technically disagree with, and failing to take the time to contribute references to any new well-sourced material (yes, to a talk-page discussion) makes your overall contribution less than useful. --Nigelj (talk) 20:52, 22 September 2008 (UTC)
Reuters states "Microsoft decision sparks dissent amid ISO members". But then further it states "This weekend, the state IT organizations of Brazil, South Africa, Venezuela, Ecuador, Cuba and Paraguay published a declaration saying they were no longer confident that ISO would be a vendor-neutral organization." This refers to the consegi delcaration. Consegi is a free software convention (Consegi site). People attending it are generally OSS representives for their countries. They are not ISO members. In fact the mentioned declaration of those OSS supporters even says "we do not intend to waste any more resources on lobbying our national bodies to pursue the appeals further" clearly confirming they are not part of the ISO member bodies but are actually people who lobby to ISO national bodies. They are therefore not the ISO members which reuters suggests they are but are in fact individuals working for governments in a job promoting OSS. If the journalist from reuters had actually read the consegi delaclaration he might have noticed that they were not people from ISO member bodies but state appointed OSS representatives attending some free software convention. If the person adding this misguided article (which should in fact be added only on standardization of Office Open XML article anyways) had actually read the declaration he also would have know the article was garbage. The fact that state appointed reps for promoting OSS are against OOXML or against anything else to do with MS would hardly have been newsworthy though ... hAl (talk) 20:55, 25 September 2008 (UTC)
The continuous tendentious deletion of information about voting irregularities from the introduction of this article is completely intolerable. OOXML is more famous for the voting controversy than it is known for any technical aspects of the format. Of course it should be in the intro. Please read Wikipedia:Tendentious editing. Thanks, --Lester 21:13, 25 September 2008 (UTC)
As no irregularities have been found by any official body in the proces there is nothing to add to the article on them. It is just a bunch of innuendo complaints by anti-OOXML campaigners whose complaints and appeals have all failed. hAl (talk) 22:38, 25 September 2008 (UTC)
We had national governments (eg South Africa) say there were irregularities, we had widespread media coverage of allegations of irregularities. What the ISO thinks of itself (a "primary source") does not counter the worldwide outrage over the ISO's voting practices, that led to the ISO's image being tarnished in some nations. The Wikipedia community must ensure that the worldwide controversy, which still rages, is reflected in the introduction of this article, and that the tendentious deletion and censorship of this information is not allowed to continue.--Lester 01:27, 26 September 2008 (UTC)
We have some ISO national bodies appeal and there appeals were dismissed without action being taken. We had some protest by mainly oss organisation about national body votes but none were found to be correct. Most irregularities can be traced back to unclear ofr wronlgy interpreted ISO/ rules. Only one case in Sweden there wass a minor incident but this was correctly reported and dealt with by MS itself and therefore did not influence the result. That is all what has factually happenned. The rest stays pure innuendo as no appeals or protest irregularity has been found to be proven correct by any official party involved in the standardization. Objectivly therefore there are no serieus irregularities but only some percieved irregularities by opponents who want to protest any positive vote on OOXML. Even the reliable sources generally speak of reported irregularties but none reports of any case of a protest that has lead to anything but dismissals. These disputed voting affairs are clearly based around the proces of standardization and do not deal directly with the format therefore hould be discussed in the appropriate article Standardization of Office Open XML which is less factual to begin with anyways. hAl (talk) 05:51, 26 September 2008 (UTC)
I agree with User:Lester and Nigelj. It is against Wikipedia policy to remove claims made by reliable sourced third parties, like you did. To be clear (again): If you believe that notable sources such as Reuters or the Consegi declaration are wrong, or ill-informed, or biased, or whatever, that is irrelevant, no matter how vehemently you believe or argue it. And who are you to judge what is right and what is not: If the person adding this misguided article had actually read the declaration he also would have know the article was garbage. Hervegirod (talk) 00:47, 26 September 2008 (UTC)
I already showed fully sourced that the reuters article was totally wrong. consegi declaration members even states in declaration they are not ISO national member bodies. If you cant read factual sources then go away. hAl (talk) 05:33, 26 September 2008 (UTC)

Hal, please familiarise yourself with official WP policies, especially at the moment concerning consensus and personal attacks and that this is not your article. The clear consensus of a number of experienced editors is for this content to be included, in brief, in this article. There's not much you can do about that, other than to add another, brief and referenced, counter-view. Repeatedly blanking it is not an legitimate option. --Nigelj (talk) 17:34, 26 September 2008 (UTC)

Hal removed the controversies again, I have undone them but he is definitely creating an edit war. 213.84.157.209 (talk) 17:15, 4 October 2008 (UTC)

Who is User:HAl and what exactly is his interest in this? Disclosure, please. I vote for his editing rights to be revoked —Preceding unsigned comment added by 218.167.11.98 (talk) 14:11, 19 February 2009 (UTC)

ISO Standard

On the ISO website, the standards is now listed at 50.20 status. I emailed the SC34 Secretariat to ask about the reliability of the ISO Wbsite's status, and it does not seem to be updated in an urgent manner. (I believe it is actually 60.0) Rick Jelliffe (talk) 12:22, 27 October 2008 (UTC)

ISO29500 until now is in 40.98 estatus, the status necessary for be international standar is 60.60. Until then, show that ISO29500 is international standar is false and it is not enciclopedic. See ISO status table. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 195.53.217.165 (talk) 09:08, 18 April 2008 (UTC)

However ISO/IEC 29500 is already the official designation used for the format specification by ISO since april. Before that date, ISO used the name DIS 29500 indicating a draft status. After being approved the format no longer is no longer in a draft status. So allthough it does not state the exact status of the standardization proces, naming the format ISO/IEC 29500 in the article is ISO conforming name use. hAl (talk) 12:27, 18 April 2008 (UTC)

OOXML is now an ISO standard, and the article should reflect this. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 69.250.153.60 (talk) 19:37, 1 April 2008 (UTC)

According to this article, OOXML is still not an official ISO standard, that is only the unofficial vote. Also with Norway's vote investigation, calling it a standard is a little premature. Article- http://www.computerworld.com/action/article.do?command=viewArticleBasic&articleId=9074058&intsrc=news_ts_head168.28.180.30 (talk) 21:07, 1 April 2008 (UTC)Anonymous
Request for an investigation you probably mean. hAl (talk) 21:39, 1 April 2008 (UTC)
ISO has not yet published final version of the standard, until then we do not know WHAT the standard is supposed to be. Hence - the OOXML is not an ISO standard yet. Further - there ARE restrictions on the implementation of the standard, so it is not really free, and MS specifically says, that you need to consult a lawyer if you want to risk implementing it under GPL - instead of declaring they will not pursue any GPL implementers. 83.5.141.245 (talk) 12:57, 4 April 2008 (UTC)
There are many definitions of "Open standard", as that article shows.
Your edit summary saying, "you will need some GPLed or at least BSD implementation WHEN the standard is published to call it free and open" may be true for some definition, but not for all of them. If you'd like to use that as an argument, you'll need to provide a reference for a definition of "open standard" that makes that claim, and say that OOXML isn't an open standard under that particular definition.
MS says you need to consult a lawyer because they obviously can't give legal advice. The content of this article shouldn't be comprised of speculation about what it means that Microsoft said "consult a lawyer" vs. "declaring they will not pursue any GPL implementers." WalterGR (talk | contributions) 13:14, 4 April 2008 (UTC)
I'm affraid that the burden of the proof of being open and free is on the proponents of such claim, so as long, as there are multiple definitions of 'open' and 'free', it's their task to specify, which of the definitions they chose, to make the format fit the description. Your argument about speculation works against you, because it's pure speculation to call OOXML 'open' and 'free' under current circumstances. Conversely I do not speculate, what MS could mean or not. It's just not a matter of legal advice, but of intention and effort. As the authors of the draft, MS had every opportunity to make it as unencumbered as needed by GPL community. This community is a major player on the software market nowadays. Excluding even much smaller players would make the draft unacceptable as open or free standard. The MS chose not to make that effort and did not show intention of making the draft available for implementation by the community. All this in the context of contacting some state's heads to ensure the draft is accepted as an international standard, which in my opinion required much more effort. 83.5.141.245 (talk) 15:06, 4 April 2008 (UTC)
Okay, I've added a reference stating that OOXML is an open standard. WalterGR (talk | contributions) 15:19, 4 April 2008 (UTC)
Actually there are no restrictions on implementing the standard (talk. The copyrights are fully free and any MS patents on the technology are released for any implementations of the standard. So unless you or anyone could suggest something in the standard you cannot implement because of restrictions ? hAl (talk) 14:58, 4 April 2008 (UTC)
Actually, I cannot talk about the standard, because it's not there yet, but portions of the draft are encumbered, if only by their reliance on previous work by MS, which incidentally is not released as far as copyright and patents are considered. What is more the ability to implement is restricted by conformance to the specs, which is to be decided arbitrarily by MS. 83.5.141.245 (talk) 15:18, 4 April 2008 (UTC)
Actually you can talk about the standard because Ecma-376 is already an open standard (as are ALL Ecma standards). As for conformance: Conformance to the spec is actually listed in the specification and thus not arbitrarily decided by Microsoft as you wrongly suggest. And as for reliance on previous Microsoft work there is not a problem as the OSP licensing does not exclude old patents. OSP licensing covers all patent claim you require to implement the format specifcation. So if you require old technology that MS has IP rights on the OSP applies to that as well. This will not change for the new version of the standard when it arrives. So you are not making any valid point so far on any suggested restriction on implementing the Office Open XML standard. So again I suggest you come up with something concrete in the standard you cannot implement because of supposed restriction and I'll show you quickly that it is not restricted in any way. OSP licensing has restrictions but those do not apply to covered formats like OOXML. hAl (talk) 15:35, 4 April 2008 (UTC)

ECMA vs ISO versions

The article seems to confuse the 2006 Ecma version of OOXML and the 2008 revised ISO version. For instance, all the applications listed in the implementation section only supports the former, not the ISO standard one. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 212.209.194.26 (talk) 12:36, 2 April 2008 (UTC)

Any objections from anyone if I clarify this on the article page? Laughton.andrew (talk) 11:55, 7 April 2008 (UTC)

Not from me! Thanks, WalterGR (talk | contributions) 18:05, 7 April 2008 (UTC)
That is a good idea Rick Jelliffe (talk) 02:27, 20 June 2008 (UTC)

I have added a description of the part arrangement of the ISO standard, as determined in the BRM. I don't think there should be anything controversial in the changes. Rick Jelliffe (talk) 12:24, 27 October 2008 (UTC)

Discussion

Discussion about this article and an other article here: Talk:Microsoft_Office#Discussion —Preceding unsigned comment added by Helpsloose (talkcontribs) 22:41, 2 April 2008 (UTC)

FYI, that discussion seems to have ended. WalterGR (talk | contributions) 21:17, 5 April 2008 (UTC)

OOXML as an "open standard"

There seem to be a lot of drive-by edits removing from the lead the referenced claim that OOXML is an open standard. If you disagree with this claim, feel that it's not neutral, or feel it's pushing a POV, that's not the appropriate way to handle it.

Referenced material shouldn't be removed unless it fails WP:VER. If you feel it doesn't pass WP:VER - for example, if you feel Ecma International isn't a reputable reference - then you need to justify that, rather than simply removing the reference.

Furthermore, if you feel the article is unbalanced in a particular way, the appropriate way to address this is to add information documenting other points of view, not simply removing information that you disagree with.

Thanks, WalterGR (talk | contributions) 21:25, 5 April 2008 (UTC)

All Ecma standards are open standards. hAl (talk) 21:43, 5 April 2008 (UTC)
I'm not arguing one way or the other. I'm just trying to explain to people the proper way to handle this, rather than doing drive-by edits to remove sourced information. WalterGR (talk | contributions) 21:47, 5 April 2008 (UTC)
I agree with Hal that the opening doesn't need a citation. The ECMA white paper is a very poor thing to cite, as it opens with "Office Open XML (OpenXML) is a proposed open standard for...." It is not an appropriate reference for the points that are trying to be cited. --Karnesky (talk) 22:17, 5 April 2008 (UTC)
I don't understand your argument. Is it that the paper is so old (written when OOXML was a proposed standard) that it can't make claims about the openness of the standard?
Regarding sourcing it in the lead at all: unsourced information can be removed. If it's not sourced in the lead, people are going to remove it even more often than they already have been when it was sourced. I've already got people accusing me of edit warring by restoring the text when people remove it. If you guys are offering to help me out by restoring the text when it gets removed, then by all means, don't cite it. Otherwise, I think it's a useful measure.
Thanks, WalterGR (talk | contributions) 22:26, 5 April 2008 (UTC)
Wait. Karnesky, your edit summary for the removal of the source says, "white paper describes it as a proposed open standard & does not give the ISO designation". Are you actually arguing that it's not an open standard? WalterGR (talk | contributions) 22:29, 5 April 2008 (UTC)
No, it's not an open standard. A standard which says "Do it like Word95 does" (which OOXML does, or at least it did initially) is not open. Raul654 (talk) 22:35, 5 April 2008 (UTC)
Raul654, being an admin you know how this process works. If you want to argue a particular point of view, then do it in the article, by adding content backed up by reliable sources. WalterGR (talk | contributions) 22:48, 5 April 2008 (UTC)
Actually Raul654 after the ISO standardization process the Office Open XML specification described your point very fully: 2.15.3.6 autoSpaceLikeWord95 (Incorrectly Adjust Text Spacing for Specific Unicode Ranges) This element specifies adjustments (detailed below) which should be applied to the spacing between adjoining regions of non-ideographic and ideographic text when the autoSpaceDE (§2.3.1.2) and autoSpaceDN (§2.3.13) elements have a value of true (or equivalent). This algorithm typically results in the following: An increase in the inter-character spacing added between non-ideographic and/or number characters and certain full-width characters No inter-character spacing between non-ideographic and/or number characters and certain half-width characters Typically, applications apply additional spacing between ideographic and non-ideographic characters/numeric characters when the autoSpaceDE / autoSpaceDN properties are applied. This element, when present with a val attribute value of true (or equivalent), specifies that applications shall apply the following adjustments to this logic: Characters in the following Unicode ranges should be treated as ideographic, even though those characters are full-width forms of non-ideographic text: U+FF10­U+FF19, U+FF21­U+FF3A, and U+FF41­U+FF5A. [Note: This results in the unnecessary addition of space. end note] Characters in the following Unicode ranges should be treated as non-ideographic, even though those characters are ideographic: U+FF66­U+FF9F. [Note: This results in the omission of the intended additional space. end note] [Example: Consider a WordprocessingML document with two paragraphs containing a mix of East Asian and Latin characters: <w:p> <w:r> <w:t>ab</w:t> </w:r> <w:r> <w:t></w:t> </w:r> <w:r> <w:t></w:t> </w:r> <w:r> <w:t>cd</w:t> </w:r> </w:p> <w:p> <w:r> <w:t>ab</w:t> </w:r> <w:r> <w:t></w:t> </w:r> <w:r> <w:t></w:t> </w:r> <w:r> <w:t>cd</w:t> </w:r> </w:p> The first paragraph contains characters with Unicode value U+FF66 (). The second paragraph contains characters with Unicode value U+FF12 (). If autoSpaceDE is true , spacing is added in the first paragraph (between the ideographs and the non-ideographic characters), but not in the second (all four characters are not ideographs): If this compatibility setting is turned on: <w:compat> <w:autoSpaceLikeWord95 /> </w:compat> Then, although it appears incorrect, applications should not add space in the first paragraph and should apply it in the second: end example]. In addition each of those compatiblity items is described in detail now in the format specification annex and because they are fully described in the spec they will also covered by the Ecma and ISO copyrights and by the Micrsoft OSP patent licensing. I hope this long explanation of just one of the item shows that any relevant info is present in the article. hAl (talk) 07:10, 6 April 2008 (UTC)
If you guys are offering to help me out by restoring the text when it gets removed, then by all means, don't cite it. Surely my eyes decieve me: you're can't be conspiring with other editors to edit war on a Wikipeida talk page? Most people engage in that sort of behavior by email, not out in the open. ➪HiDrNick! 22:43, 5 April 2008 (UTC)
Read this entire section - I think I'm pretty clear on my intentions. If you want to accuse me of impropriety, do it on the appropriate noticeboard. WalterGR (talk | contributions) 22:46, 5 April 2008 (UTC)
Read my comments. I never claimed it wasn't an open standard. My claim is that the white paper does not say any of the things you'd expect it to say, given the location you had chosen to place the citation (e.g. it neither claims that the standard is "presently" open nor does it give the ISO number referred to earlier in the same sentence). If you feel that sentence need a citation, by all means add one. Just add one that actually supports the statement explicitly, rather than this historical document. --Karnesky (talk) 22:54, 5 April 2008 (UTC)
Oh, I see. I was just confused by the "ISO designation" text, thinking you meant some kind of designation of openness. Thanks for clearing that up for me.
Still, I think the reference is valid. I don't understand how "proposed open standard" turns into "questionably open accepted standard." Rather, it was once a proposed open standard, and now is an accepted open standard. Furthermore, Ecma's download page speaks about the accepted standard and links to that whitepaper as an overview. That seems like pretty strong confirmation that the information is still valid. WalterGR (talk | contributions) 23:21, 5 April 2008 (UTC)
Again, I don't think it warrants a reference. But a better reference would be something that contained the ISO standard number in it, as that would cite all information from the sentence to that point. Alternatively, reword that hook to make it clear that whatever ECMA documents you cite only apply to the statement of it being an open standard & choose documents that are firmer on that point. --Karnesky (talk) 23:24, 5 April 2008 (UTC)
It would not serve a point to use the ISO designation for opennnes. Actually Ecma standards are as open or more open than ISO standards already. hAl (talk) 07:14, 6 April 2008 (UTC)
At the risk of drawing other articles into the edit war - check out Open standard and Open format. It should be readily apparent from these articles that 1) there is no common consensus on what a standard has to be in order to be an "open standard", and 2) that ISO designation is regarded by many as neither necessary nor sufficient. --Alvestrand (talk) 10:12, 6 April 2008 (UTC)

IMO, it should be clear from the fact that the specification allows the implementation to embed arbitrary binary data (for example, a .doc, which is not an open standard by any definition), the standard itself is not open. Only some parts of it are. Yesudeep (talk) 03:43, 16 April 2008 (UTC)

Standards don't need to specify the format for every item that can be embedded inside it. For example, you can attach files of any kind to an internet e-mail. Would you argue that internet e-mail is or is not an open standard?
Simple Mail Transport Protocol (SMTP) is described by RFCs 821, 1123, and 2821. But you can attach arbitrary files to e-mails. Therefore, are only "some parts" of SMTP open?
If you want to argue that OOXML doesn't qualify as an open standard, please provide verifiable, reputable 3rd party references to back up your specific claims. Thanks, WalterGR (talk | contributions) 03:54, 16 April 2008 (UTC)
Just because it can contain embedded proprietary markup doesn't make it "closed". The spec doesn't require you to process the internal structure of the binary blob. It only requires the blob to be made available to implementations that want to process it. What is required to be done with the blob is clearly specified, anything else is a part of extensibility. You can use that feature to embed an entire .doc file but that would be an abuse of the spec, not an intended use. This is no different from ODF extensibility that also allows custom data to be inserted. Or XHTML, that can use namespaces to embed any other markup (including proprietary ones). Or even XML. Embed anything anywhere. If binary isn't allowed, use a different encoding, but the essence remains the same. None of those are only "partially" open standards. --soum talk

I have prepared an outline of an argument for removing the references to "free" and "open" as follows AJRobbins (talk) 13:31, 1 December 2008 (UTC)

  • Use of the term "open"
  • Refering to OOXML as an "open" file format.
According to Sun Microsystems, an open file format must be:
  • Vendor-neutral. This is NOT MET. The destiny and fate of OOXML has been, and still is controlled by only one corporation.
  • Implementable (by any vendor). This is NOT MET. There are a number of tags in OOXML which are never defined, thus making the standard impossible to implement. For example:
  • <w:autoSpaceLikeWord95/>
  • <w:footnoteLayoutLikeWW8/>
  • <w:lineWrapLikeWord6/>
  • <w:shapeLayoutLikeWW8/>
  • <w:truncateFontHeightsLikeWP6/>
According to You, an open file format must be:
  • Implementable (by anyone). This is NOT MET, for the same reasons.
  • Refering to OOXML as an "open" standard.
According to the Open Source Initiative, an open standard must have:
  • No Intentional Secrets. This is NOT MET. See implementability above.
  • Availability. This is met.
  • Patents (royalty-free). This is NOT MET. Microsoft has been filed patents in both the US and EU markets, but has not released any of them from possible prosecution, even with the OSP.
  • Claiming all ECMA standards are "open"
  • ECMA's code of conduct states that patents are only required to be licensed under reasonable and non-discriminatory (RAND) terms, and do not require that patents are royalty-free. This violates OSI's definition of an open standard above.
  • Use of the term "free"
  • Refering to OOXML as an "free" file format.
According to the Linux Information Project, a free file format must be:
  • Published (in its entirety). This is met.
  • Not encumbered by any copyrights, patents, trademarks or other restrictions... This is NOT MET. See above.

AJRobbins (talk) 13:31, 1 December 2008 (UTC)

Problem is that a lot of your argument are just not true. For instance: The destiny and fate of OOXML has been, and still is controlled by only one corporation. Actually Sun and IBM together have a lot more control over the ODF standard than Micrsoft has over OOXML. So your argument would actually sort of put ODF out of Open standard category rather than OOXML. Also you claim that certain elements in the standard are not defined. However those elements are all defined very clearly in the ISO version of the standaard. However is individual item in a standard are not clealrly defined that does not mean it does render the standard not open. In fact if you check out the current ODF drafts you will find that many of the current standard elements in the previous version are found to be unclear or poorly defined. If an item in an open standard is not defined clearly enough then you can suggest to the standard committees responsible to add a better description (as has happened with OOXML) or scrap the item. Also you claim that Microsoft has not released their patent rights even with OSP licenisng but actually the OSP free patent licensing applies to all OOXML implementations and is in fact almost identical to IBM's patent licensing for ODF. And you bring forth no argument but just claim this (as you do with many of your so called arguments). Also you use a variety of definition on open standards which if all applied would almost leave no open standards at all. On ODF for instance both Sun and IBM have surrendered patent rights on ODF implementations similar to MS has done on OOXML. However in one of your definitions is is stated: "Not encumbered by any copyrights, patents, trademarks or other restrictions" which again would leave ODF not qualifieing for open standard. (and probably most ISO/IEC and W3C standards as well). I suggest you use only a definition which sees pratical use in the real world like for instance the definitions of the EU. I could probably go on about your arguments but I leave it as this for now. Concluding I find your arguments projections or interpretations rather than factual contributions to the discusion. hAl (talk) 16:39, 1 December 2008 (UTC)
... your argument are just not true. -- Well your argument is filled with fallacies.
... more control ... than Microsoft has over OOXML. -- This is a classic Red herring fallacy, it does not address the (binary) question of whether or not Microsoft has control over OOXML, it simply changes the subject.
However is individual item in a standard are not clealrly defined that does not mean it does render the standard not open. -- I beg to differ. If you had all the clearly defined elements in the world, but a single undefined element called <SecretData val="..."/>, and this was used by popular implementations to store an entire Office document, then that would be enough to prevent it from being an open standard.
And you bring forth no argument but just claim this -- There was a great article about this so I decided to simply outline the argument.
... leave no open standards at all. and ... leave ODF not qualifieing for open standard. -- These are both classic Slippery slope fallacies. It avoids the issue, and does not imply that OOXML is an open standard. AJRobbins (talk) 00:55, 2 December 2008 (UTC)
I am not trying to suugest adding to the opendocument that it is NOT an open standard. You are. Than it not enough just to suggest somthing but then I want evidence in what way OOXML differ from widely accepted as open standard ODF in openness for instance. You have suggested that MS has control over the standard. But you have not proved anything to show that MS has that control. The fact are that MS has only 1 vote in Ecma and no votes in ISO and therefore is factually not in control of the standard. This is different from ODF where two companies have majority votes in the OASIS committee and have effectivly controlled the standardization proces and where ISO/IEc have no influence on the format and in fact seen their issues with the ODF format been ignored by the OASIS TC. These are all verifiable facts. Your suggestive use of a secret element is just ridiculous. The elements you spoke of earlier were always defined in the standard but the way they could be rendered was in some cases arbitrary (which is the case in many elements in almost all open standards that have rendering elements). This have now been solved by extending the information on the rendering associated with the elements. That is the proper way to handle defect in a standard. You have obviously no idea about standards developement because having elements in a standard that lack information is common as is improving those standard is subsequent versions. Standards development is always about improving a standard not about trying to block its existance asx some people seem intent on in the case of OOXML. Also you seem to be avoiding the point about you using different definitions for open standard to suit your needs and disregard commenly used definitions by for instance by governments. hAl (talk) 06:43, 2 December 2008 (UTC)

Infoboxes

Why are the infoboxes promoting OOXML as MS Office 2007 formats? Office 2007 is just one implementation, like several others. On what basis was the Office 2007 impl chosen for infobox visibility? --soum talk 17:11, 9 April 2008 (UTC)

Please see the given reference for the MIME type ([1]). Ghettoblaster (talk) 17:53, 9 April 2008 (UTC)
Where's the answer to my questions in the reference? That Microsoft Office Word 2007 document has .docx extension and application/vnd.openxmlformats-officedocument.wordprocessingml.document was never questioned. The only point of disagreement is that application/vnd.openxmlformats-officedocument.wordprocessingml.document refers to any WordProcessingML implementation, not just Microsoft Word 2007 .docx format. So why was Microsoft Word 2007 was singled out? I propose replacing "Microsoft Office Word 2007 Document" with WordProcessingML Document, "Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2007 Presentation" with PresentationML Document, and "Microsoft Office Excel 2007 Workbook" with SpreadSheetML Document. I am not sure of the icons, though, but have a hunch that they are not the generic identity across all implementations. Can anyone confirm? --soum talk 18:25, 9 April 2008 (UTC)
If you have a look at the article history, you'll see that it wasn't me who added these names. I just tried to point out where they possibly came from. If you got any other information regarding the official names or if you have official generic OOXML icons, please feel free to change the infobox. Ghettoblaster (talk) 19:41, 9 April 2008 (UTC)
I wasn;t accusing you of any POV-pushing or anything. It looked odd to me, I started this discussion to gather feedback. --soum talk 19:46, 9 April 2008 (UTC)
The background section of the article actually calls the format "Ecma Office Open XML". So I'd suggest the following names:
  • Ecma Office Open XML Document
  • Ecma Office Open XML Presentation
  • Ecma Office Open XML Workbook
Or maybe without the "Ecma" prefix. ISO calls the format simply "Office Open XML" ([2]). Ghettoblaster (talk) 20:01, 9 April 2008 (UTC)

This reads like Microsoft propaganda

In the introduction, it makes no mention of the contentious way in which OOXML was pushed through and makes it all look like it went through like a dream. Neither does it mention ODF or that there is already an existing clutch of fully implemented closed and open source implementations of ODF. I think this needs to be mentioned.

82.24.42.7 (talk) 11:33, 11 April 2008 (UTC)11/4/2008 cybervegan

I agree with this. A standard with not even a single complete implementation and only one vendor does not make sense. The term "standard" seems abused, simply because the specification is not vendor-neutral. Standardization ideally occurs when there are several competing implementations varying to different degrees and interoperability becomes a major headache. I would prefer to call this a pseudo-open vendor-specification instead.

It doesn't just read like Microsoft propaganda. It is Microsoft propaganda and all the MS fanbois around here are making sure it remains that way. I'm sorry but I feel humiliated already. I'm out of wikipedia.

Yesudeep (talk) 09:36, 16 April 2008 (UTC)

Why would you characterise Office Open XML as not having a complete implementation ? MS Office 2007 is a much more complete implementation of Office Open XML than any existing implementation of ODF. hAl (talk) 10:23, 16 April 2008 (UTC)
Please, save it. [3] —Preceding unsigned comment added by 59.184.23.28 (talk) 07:14, 22 April 2008 (UTC)

Absolutely agree. The only thing this format is known for so far is the massive corruption during its ISO approval. This absolutely has to be a significant part of the introduction. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 80.216.1.119 (talk) 14:41, 14 May 2008 (UTC)

Yes I agree this reads in large part like a Microsoft propaganda piece. But unfortunately Wikipedia increasingly permits this sort of thing to happen, even worse they often defend such behaviour. I make a point of telling my CS students NOT to trust anything they read in Wikipedia. Snieckus (talk) 17:34, 3 June 2008 (UTC)

The article is, in fact, Microsoft propaganda. I am disappointed that Wikipedia allows this to go on. How much money did Wikipedia receive from Microsoft during their year-end fundraiser I wonder. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 24.177.111.68 (talk) 16:42, 14 March 2009 (UTC)

Size of the OOXML specification

I see that a claim of the size of the OOXML specification has been removed from the article.

It has been claimed to be 6000 pages. I have seen a picture claiming to be of the specification, stacked on a chair, where the pile of paper was higher than the back of the chair. According to [4], the normalized thickness of a piece of paper is 0.1 mm - 6000 pages should then be 60 cm, if printed double-sided, it should be 30 cm. Can someone who's actually held a printout of the complete OOXML spec in their hands confirm whether the copy they saw was around that size, for the print format they were looking at?

That's a hunkin' big pile of paper. But we should quote it in verifiable centimetres, not in offbeat comparisiions to the size of persons. --Alvestrand (talk) 22:38, 11 April 2008 (UTC)

The size should be given in number of pages. That's how the length of every other printed documents is described. Using a physical measurement would be a subtle attempt at pushing the point of view that the specification is too long. WalterGR (talk | contributions) 23:51, 11 April 2008 (UTC)
Not very many people are used to dealing with piles of 6000 pages. I could equally well say that it's an useful form of illustration, and that not including it is an attempt to push the POV that it's reasonable to have such a long specification be a fast-track ISO standard. --Alvestrand (talk) 06:06, 12 April 2008 (UTC)
I understand the idea of illustration, but I think it would be belaboring the point: the length of the ODF specification is already given. Furthermore, to maintain a neutral POV, the "size in centimetres" for both specs should be given. However, this would be completely unnecessary, as one can do the exact same size comparison based on the number of pages, which is already provided. WalterGR (talk | contributions) 07:37, 12 April 2008 (UTC)
I strongly suggest people at least stop using that repeated use of fake picture with a stack of paper suggesting it is the printed spec. It is petty and childish. Leave that kind of behaviour to anti ooxml activists but out of wikipedia. It is a long specification. Some might be critical of that (allthough some have stated that more documentation is actually better) and as such it is fine in the article. Ridiculous suggestions on measurements have no place here. Even the more objective page size number comparison could be debated as for instance OOXML was printed in 1,5 times the linespacing that for instance ODF was printed with. hAl (talk) 08:01, 12 April 2008 (UTC)
What's the reason for claiming that the picture is fake? (Note - I haven't seen the picture in question - I've seen one, but it may not be the same one) --Alvestrand (talk) 08:23, 12 April 2008 (UTC)
It has been published on the internet that it was. Actually there is a real pic as well.[5] hAl (talk) 11:06, 12 April 2008 (UTC)
I think anybody who prints out a 6,000+ page specification should themselves be criticised for wasting a lot of paper, Nobody.... NOBODY is ever going to make use of that.
It doesn't matter how big a specification is... the quality and usefulness of the information is what's important to a developer. The OOXML spec has piles of examples, lots of big tables, and all sorts of things not narrowly related to the definition of the spec, that make the "page count" grow. Ask any developer who is tasked with creating an implementation, and they'd tell you that they would prefer all that extra information. -/- Warren 17:55, 12 April 2008 (UTC)
I agree. Still people want to add it to the critisism because they think less information is better I guess. hAl (talk) 17:59, 12 April 2008 (UTC)
There's no need to make your point in such a way. As a premise, I've not read any of the contending specifications. The first point is that given the specification size, the fast-track process has been abused, in my opinion. The article gives a lot of examples _suggesting_ this, but it is still my own judgement. Having said that, synthesis is known to be a virtue (you don't need to be too verbose, just to be clear), and simplicity itself is a virtue. I don't know whether the specification is verbose, it has been suggested that it is more complex. That's one of the points. --Blaisorblade (talk) 03:26, 8 January 2009 (UTC)

It might be of interest that ODF spec is small partly because it does not include any specs on what it claims to be incorporated W3C standards. However if for instance ODF were to incorporate the W3C schemas even if only for for validation reasons then even OpenOffice files would not validate against these schemas. So leaving out the w3cinfo from ODF is also consistant with OpenOffice not corretly supporting the w3c standards that are now only referenced in ODF. So what is not in the spec apperantly does not have to validate in OpenOffice ODF terms. hAl (talk) 13:00, 12 April 2008 (UTC)

I don't understand this statement. Are you claiming that an XML validator won't validate an ODF document if given the schemas that ODF claims to reference, or are you claiming something different? --Alvestrand (talk) 13:37, 12 April 2008 (UTC)
No actually an OOo document will validate against ODF schemas because reused schemas like w3c mathml schema are not included in the spec but replaced by veryfing anything[6] even if non consistent with the format. hAl (talk) 15:16, 12 April 2008 (UTC)
Your point does not matter at all for your point, it is just a rant against OOo and ODF. OOo is just one implementation of ODF, and it seems that while they are the de-facto reference one, they still suck. And yeah, OOo does suck for many reasons, and nobody seriously denies that. Still, for a third-party app developer, supporting the standard means simply plugging in any standard conforming SVG library, instead of implementing from scratch the DrawingML spec - any amount of examples can't win software reuse. And that's just to support a new standard, that had no technical merit for choosing to reinvent the wheel. Any SVG shortcomings should be fixed within the SVG standard, unless it's hopelessly broken (and I don't think we are arguing about this).
However, your link is indeed interesting. Still, it means that OOo does not support well ODF like Office does not support well the new standard yet. That's interesting to know, at least. Can you add it on the ODF article?
Anyway, while Microsoft has a long history of embrace-and-extend patterns, has been repeatedly condemned for unfair market practices, and has by far the biggest market share, <personal_opinion>that case is probably a matter of implementation quality</personal_opinion>, and nobody doubts on commitment of OOo developers to support free standards, or at least about their bona fide. That's why the two facts gets a really different press coverage by reliable sources. --Blaisorblade (talk) 03:26, 8 January 2009 (UTC)
Sorry, I did misread the article, also because I was confused by your reference to OpenOffice. The point is that there are a few bugs in the standard, such that conforming ODF documents include pseudo-SVG and not SVG. One indeed needs to take and modify an existing SVG library. The cost is still much lower (your link argues better than me why reusing existing standards is better), but that's indeed braindead. One may still think bona fide is intended from the ODF developer and that it is just a bug in a spec (there are always heaps of them) which can be fixed, but I have no really strong opinion on this. Btw: your comment is still technically incorrect, since they don't just accept anything. --Blaisorblade (talk) 05:26, 8 January 2009 (UTC)

Criticism that OOXML was standardized too quickly

I know this is common criticism. It has been added, removed, and edited in various ways over the history of this article. I recently removed some content in this edit that had previously been added, removed, and added again, because

  • it compared only ISO/IEC standardization time with ISO/IEC and OASIS standardization time, thereby purporting to demonstrate that ODF was examined more closely.

Furthermore, likely due to the controversial nature of OOXML standardization, technical measures were employed to examine the standard that were not employed during ODF standardization. For example, [7] and [8]. A simple "time it took to standardize" comparison therefore isn't appropriate to argue this criticism, and amounts to original research.

Unless some kind of measurement can be derived for "total person hours of analysis" for each document (which is obviously impossible) then a simple "time it took to standardize" comparison isn't appropriate argue this criticism, and amounts to original research.

What isn't original research, however, is specific claims from verifiable sources saying that the format was standardized too quickly or was not given enough analysis.

Thanks, WalterGR (talk | contributions) 11:36, 12 April 2008 (UTC)

The paragraph previously stated that: Office Open XML was approved by ISO/IEC in 15.5 months compared to OpenDocument being ISO approved in 6,5 month.. It transformed a criticism about OOXML in an unsourced statement about ODF, which was reverting the meaning of the sentence before. I changed it to The Office Open XML was approved by ISO/IEC in 15.5 month compared to OpenDocument being approved in 3.5 years, comprising 3 years spent before ISO standardization to be approved as an OASIS standard, and 6 months for approval by the ISO members with sourced refs because I thought it was non neutral as it was. This was then reverted to the original sentence. I think it is better to remove all the comparison about OOXML vs ODF in this sentence, which was still unsourced.
It must also be noted that, as stated by the OpenDocument standardization article, OASIS is one of the organizations which has been granted the right to propose standards directly to an ISO SC for "Fast-Track Processing".
Hervegirod (talk) 11:52, 12 April 2008 (UTC)
Oh, you're right. I should have been more thorough. Thanks for this edit.
Ecma International (which submitted OOXML to ISO) has also been granted the right to make fast-track submissions. So a possibly more accurate comparison would have been OASIS+ISO (ODF) with Ecma+ISO (OOXML). But even that comparison - to argue a point regarding the thoroughness of the standardization process - would likely be flawed, due to the factors I described above.
Thanks, WalterGR (talk | contributions) 12:07, 12 April 2008 (UTC)
It might be relevant that when you add an article that has a lot of factual incorrectness (like the Google reference) that people are aware of what that are uses as it basis for its claims. The Google reference make an incorrect comparison of ISO scrutinazition times, it incorrectly states that ODF uses an ISO markup language for formulas whilst ODF does not reference any formula markup language and the refrenece incorrectly states that ODF patent licensing applies to future versions allthough for instance IBM's patent licensing on ODF only applies to existing versions of ODF v1.0 and v1.1 and Sun patent license vaguely only applies to versions they contributed to to the point of incorring an obligation. Three major screwups in such a short document. It is a terrible opinion document and pathetic that Google even has the nerve to put out such misinformed garbage. hAl (talk) 12:56, 12 April 2008 (UTC)
The complaint I've heard is that it the OOXML spec was inappropriate for the ISO fast track. The fast track was intended for specs that needed few or no changes between being proposed and being approved; I think it's documented pretty thoroughly that many changes have been accepted from the version of OOXML that ECMA proposed and the one that will be produced by the post-BRM editing. The time schedule for ISO processing was pretty constrained once fast track was chosen. FWIW, the processing time for non-fast-track ISO standards is usually measured in years, not months. --Alvestrand (talk) 13:40, 12 April 2008 (UTC)
The fasttrack standardization proces was actually intended for formats originating not from a standards organization but for format/technology emerging from the industry/marketplace. As these format/technologies are being used in the real world already during the standardization proces it is not of much use to use a prolonged standardization proces which would stay behind the fact and thus the fastracking proces. hAl (talk) 14:43, 12 April 2008 (UTC)

See Also - ODF?

I wonder if this article could use a link to OpenDocument, seeing how it is the only other ISO standard in this area? Particularly so since there are a number of links in the article referencing "OOXML to ODF" convertors and such, but nowhere does it explain what is ODF... -- int19h (talk) 14:16, 12 April 2008 (UTC)

A see also section is appropriate for wikilinks that are not already in the article. As the OpenDocument is already in the article it has little use adding it tot the seealso section as well. hAl (talk) 14:34, 12 April 2008 (UTC)
The sixth word in the article is a link to OpenDocument. What more do you what? -/- Warren 16:28, 15 April 2008 (UTC)

ISO/IEC DIS 29500 has been deleted[9]Kevstar.31 (talk) 22:37, 14 April 2008 (UTC)

ODF is not the only ISO document format standard, just a recent one. Those of us with long memories also remember ODA. It might still be on the ISO books somewhere. And for those who still believe in Goldfarb's vision, there's always SGML. --Alvestrand (talk) 14:16, 15 April 2008 (UTC)
It is not DIS anymore and it was split into four parts: [10] 71.112.94.166 (talk) 02:57, 15 April 2008 (UTC)

Conformance with ISO spec.

As the ISO/IEC Office Open XML format specification spec is only just been written and has not even been published yet by ISO/IEC it is save to asume that virtually no conforming implementations will exist yet. That is not strange but normal. First a standardsorganization create or change a format specification and then people can implement it. It seems that some people see this normal situation as an interesting item to critisise the current MS Office 2007 implementation which is of course still based on the Ecma 376 standard specification from 2006. However this wikipedia article is not about a single implementation not conforming against a new specifciation even before it is published but about the Office open XML format itself. For this kind of hype noninfo go to Groklaw. If after a year or so after ISO/IEC has published the specification (which is expected in a few months) noone is conforming to the ISO specification (like for instance is the case with OpenDocument) it might have some encyclopic value that an ISO version is fully ignored. However certainly before ISO even finishes with the standardization and publishes the new ISO format and the schemas that accompany the format specification it is of little value complaining that it is not implemented in certain products. As for Micrsoft they have already confirmed explicitly that they will base their prodcuts on the ISO/IEC specification here so critics do not need worry that support for the ISO/IEC version will underway. In fact Micrsoft will already release their Office open XML software development kit based on the new specifications in may 2008 source. I hope information this keeps the overly keen editors at bay. hAl (talk) 16:43, 22 April 2008 (UTC)

Hello, I undeleted my add to the standardization section, because I think you were non neutral when you deleted it.
  • The fact that an implementation does not conform to a new not yet published format specification has no encyclopedic value: on the contrary, this has an encyclopedic value; OOXML try to promote interoperability between word processing softwares, and yet even the root implementation does not conform to it yet. I am not saying that it would never conform to it, although some authorities in the domain (Tim Bray is, you would agree), think the contrary. In fact I was even careful to add that the deltas with the standard were the parts that were changed after the ballot, before the final acceptance.
  • How could old existing documents conform to a new specification that has not even been fully published as a standard yet : this is not the point here, this is a matter of interpretation. The fact remains that Office 2007 is not still conformant to the standard.

Please don't delete stuff like that with no good reason. I would have very much accepted changes in the text (I even added a part saying that these differences are normal for now), but deleting like that is VERY unencyclopedic ;-) Hervegirod (talk) 22:29, 22 April 2008 (UTC)

Whether Microsoft Office 2007 conforms to the new specification or not has nothing to do with the spec itself. This belongs to the Microsoft Office 2007 article. Ghettoblaster (talk) 23:00, 22 April 2008 (UTC)
I don't think so. It would be the same as saying that StarOffice or WordPerfect do not conform. I think that this information really belong to this article, or to the Standardization of Office Open XML article. Quote from the beginning of this article: Microsoft originally developed the specification as a successor to its binary Microsoft Office file formats. It is also called Office Open XML format, and for a good reason. The Implementation paragraph also says that Office Open XML (as specified by Ecma 376) is the default Microsoft Office 2007 format. So putting elsewhere the fact that there are some differences between OOXML (as specified by ISO) and their Microsoft reference implementation would leave a part of the story untold. But I agree that maybe the part about the partial conformance could rather be put in this paragraph. Hervegirod (talk) 23:19, 22 April 2008 (UTC)
The level of support in Office 2007 probably needs adding to the (long, uncontroversial?) section on "application support". I'm willing to bet that a number of those "supporting" applications will not pass a strict conformance test to either the ECMA 376 or the ISO format, and I'm willing to bet even more that most of the applications that can both read and write OOXML will not preserve all information on a round-trip conversion. But people who have actually read actual tests of compatibility should add that information, not me, who's merely betting. --Alvestrand (talk) 05:29, 23 April 2008 (UTC)
You state that OOXML does not conform to the standard. That is incorrect. Micsoft office does conform to the current version of the open standard but does not yet conform to the unpublised new version of the standard. The fact that you misstate this simple truth shows that the infor you try to isadd is trying to create confursion rather that give an encyclopedic insight. hAl (talk) 05:44, 23 April 2008 (UTC)

I have added a similar stament on conformance to the ISO/IEC specification to the Opendocument article. It will be interesting what will happen if Microsoft produces an ISO/IEC conforming application and of course Opendocument will then still not have an ISO/IEC conforming main implementation. hAl (talk) 10:58, 1 May 2008 (UTC)

Good work, but I would skip the "of course", we should not try to read in the stars, as often written here. Let's see what Microsoft (and others in the ODF world) do before... Hervegirod (talk) 11:09, 1 May 2008 (UTC)

Open Specification Promise

Sorry to begin a new edit war (maybe), but it seems to me that the sentence: With Ecma International publishing the specification for free and patents made irrevocably available on a royalty-free basis through the Open Specification Promise, Office Open XML conforms to all characteristics of the European Union's definition of an open standard, in the Open Specification Promise section is WP:OR (the source is just a link to a generic IDBAC document). Does somebody have sources about this claim? Hervegirod (talk) 00:44, 27 April 2008 (UTC)

I used to have each the four individual characteristics of the EU definition covered all individually in the article but opponents of Office Open XML removed them.
  • The standard is maintained by Ecma, a non profit organization with an open descision making procedure.
  • All Ecma standard are availalble free of copyrights
  • The OSP provides irrevocable royalty free availability of possible patentclaim
  • The standard can be (re)used with out constraints as all Ecma standards can.
and all with with sourcing of course. Would you like me to put that all back in the article ?
However, you might also want to look at the OpenDocument article which states: The OpenDocument standard meets the common definitions of an open standard, meaning the specification is freely available and implementable'. I have never seen that common definition of an open standard and it is has never been properly sourced either.hAl (talk) 10:41, 27 April 2008 (UTC)
Hm - I can find the flat statement on the ECMA website that they make their standards available "free of copyright", but (as I learned to my chagrin when working through the IP thickets in the IETF's IPR working group) saying so doesn't make it so, and with the nature of copyright under the Berne convention, it might actually be impossible to do so. If you have a pointer to Ecma's actual grant of license to use its standard, that would be wonderful. (not least because it'd be useful to have it as a model to suggest to others....) --Alvestrand (talk) 21:01, 27 April 2008 (UTC)
I do not understand what you mean by a grant of license to use its standard. What rights that Ecma posesses after publication of the standard free of copyrights would you like Ecma to grant you ? You suggest there is some right Ecma could grant you to use its standard. Which kind of IP right would that be ...? hAl (talk) 22:34, 27 April 2008 (UTC)
It seems that the "openness" of the two standards (OOXML and ODF) is difficult to express and/or to prove, if we look at it in a strict point of view; but maybe this is due to the nature of the ECMA and ISO organization (they were created more than 20 years before GPL, and even GPL was not taking Patents into account before version 3). I think that your proposal would add more clarity. It makes me think that the same kind of work should be done with the ODF article ;-) Hervegirod (talk) 22:19, 27 April 2008 (UTC)


This are current relevant statments on the Ecma site.
The Ecma copyright statement:

Ecma Standards and Technical Reports are made available to all interested persons or organizations, free of charge and copyright, in printed form and, as files in Acrobat ® PDF format.

The Ecma formal aim declaration:

To publish these Standards and Technical Reports in electronic and printed form; the publications can be freely copied by all interested parties without restrictions.

Also the Ecma code of conduct in patent matters shows that Ecma members must give rand licensing for their patents on standards they participate in OR even just vote favourably on to be approved as an Ecma standard. hAl (talk) 22:45, 27 April 2008 (UTC)

(outdent) When rustling around the ecma website, I found this page: [11], which is a pretty OK license-to-use for anything submitted to ECMA (such as the original OOXML specification from Microsoft, or proposals for edits made thereafter). (It's only for TC45, but is probably pretty standard for ECMA). The interesting thing is that it is NOT an assignment of copyright; copyright for a submission still rests with the original submitter. It's not clear (because it's not written in this license) how copyright actually gets created in the actual standards text - the standard (!) methods are "preparing the standard is work-for-hire for the standards organization, whether you get paid or not", and "you retain a copyright in the derived work that is the standard, but you have promised that we and others can do whatever we want with it". I've got no beef with what they want to achieve (I heartily approve, in fact!), but I'd very much like to see the legal language they have used to achieve it. --Alvestrand (talk) 11:29, 28 April 2008 (UTC)

As the original poster in this section rightly pointed out the statement and reference link are original research WP:NOR. The statement that "Office Open XML conforms to all characteristics of the European Union's definition of an open standard" and gives a reference to what the European Union's definition of an open standard. For it not to be original research the reference would have to come from a 3rd source (preferably a news site) saying that it does conform. As it is referenced now the reader has to find out what those characteristics are and what the definition is and compare them. That is proof that it is original research. AlbinoFerret (talk) 20:53, 9 May 2008 (UTC)
Isn't this more "From the horse's mouth" rather than original research? —Preceding unsigned comment added by 96.243.165.200 (talk) 18:54, 10 May 2008 (UTC)
No, and you may want to read more on Original Research here WP:NOR. The first two lines gives the rule "Wikipedia does not publish original research or original thought. This includes unpublished facts, arguments, speculation, and ideas; and any unpublished analysis or synthesis of published material that serves to advance a position." The claim that "Office Open XML conforms to all characteristics" is the issue. There is no reference that says it conforms. Only a reference to European Union's definition proving that definition exists. But the problem here isn't that the European Union's definition exists. But that a reference is needed to show that "Office Open XML conforms to all characteristics". This is not out of the horses mouth, there is no reference that says it. It is unpublished analysis that the one conforms to the other. I have placed a {{fact}} marker where the reference is needed. If a reference cant not be found within a short period of time the claim will need to be removed. AlbinoFerret (talk) 17:10, 11 May 2008 (UTC)

Article and intro are biased, now there is a content fork

The introduction of any Wikipedia article should be a summary all the information about that subject. In the case of this article, it isn't. Both the article and the intro do not sufficiently summarize the tremendous controversy surrounding OOXML/OXML. It is the most controversial standards decision to ever come before the ISO, but you wouldn't know it from the current intro. Instead, there now exists a content fork, whereby this article is cleansed of controversy, and the controversy has been moved to the secondary article Standardization of Office Open XML. The controversy is a major part of the OOXML/OXML history, and what people know about the format, and how the media and outside resources cover the format. A reasonable proportion of this article should be devoted to the controversy surrounding the format, as should a reasonable proportion of the intro.Lester 22:57, 28 April 2008 (UTC)

Wikipedia is not a soapbox. Controversy is notable, but only so far as it exists. If the controvery is notable enough for "sizable" content, then it should be notable enough to have its own article. The controvery does not define what OOXML is. It's fine to mention it, but if it's that important it belongs in it's own article. Controvery detracts from the encyclopedic quality of any article because it focuses on things that are external to the topic itself. Further, in my opinion, controvery only belongs in an article after the dust has settled. It's too easy for those caught up in the controversy to add inappropriate and non-NPOV comments, and if it's that new, the sources are likely to be less reviewed and factual since ther will have been less time for those sources to be validated by peer review. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 12.214.250.176 (talk) 05:19, 1 May 2008 (UTC)
I must say that inclusion of information about the world wide controversy regarding OOXML at the ISO is not "a soapbox". The intro should be a summary of both this article and the ratification article. Inclusion of controversy, that is, both positive and negative aspects about a subject, does not "detract from the encyclopedic quality" of an article. Rather, it provides balance. Burying all controversy in a second article is truly a content fork and must be fixed. The intro needs mention of the controversy to stay within Wikipedia guidelines. Lester 05:57, 6 May 2008 (UTC)

British BECTA complaint against OOXML

The article was recently reverted (>>Diff<<) to remove information that OOXML has been criticized because it reduces competition. On the edit summary of the revert, it said "Becta complaint is not accepted as a formal complaint by EU." This edit summary did not give an adequate reason for reverting the article. I assume the editor was referring to this story in The Register which says the BECTA complaint is not a formal complaint, however the EU will still be accepting and analyzing BECTA's complaint. I don't see how that relates to the revert of the article. It is well known that the common complaint about OOXML is that it reduces competition. There are thousands of news articles on the internet which document this. I call upon the reverting editor to state what he/she believes is required (eg a large number of references about OOXML & competition added to the article) before reverting the article again. Thanks, Lester 05:42, 15 May 2008 (UTC)

As you already conform that the becta complaint is not treated as a formal complaint by the EU it is of little use in the article. The article is not a news site for listing individual OOXML complaints. If the EU makes formal descisions regarding OOXML that impacts this format then it is ceertainly relevant for the article. Also the becta complaint was also about pricesetting of Microsoft Office products in brittisch education which is of course totally irrelevant in this article anyways as that belong to the MS office article. You state that a common complaint is that OOXML reduces competition but it would only have merit if some independant recognized expert on the subject writes an article about that and you would then probably get a whole list of article stating that OOXML actually makes it easier for competitors to implement the formats used in MS Office. It will be hard to show that using an open standard XML format reduces competition compared to using a closed propriety binary format. hAl (talk) 06:03, 15 May 2008 (UTC)
First, I call upon User:HAl to stop reverting newly added and referenced content seconds after it has been added. There have been worldwide complaints about OOXML, and how it affects competition and interoperability, and there are endless major references available to back it up. It doesn't matter we think the criticism is valid or not valid. The fact is there is worldwide criticism which should be included in the article. It is not up to our own opinions about whether it is hard to show criticism is valid or not. Please stop reverting and deleting referenced material, and allow time for the Wikipedia community to discuss the content. Lester 06:22, 15 May 2008 (UTC)
@Lester. no matter how major or important the person who made the criticism might be, its still his/her opinion. We never state such opinions as facts ("criticized for discouraging competition") Because it is an opinion, it has to be presented as such ("criticized by Organization X, which thinks it discourages competition"). "Some" is a weasel word and should not be used, without any quantification. And just saying it "discourages competition" adds absolutely nothing to the article (and hence not required) unless it is backed up with how it does so. --soum talk 06:31, 15 May 2008 (UTC)
Hi Soumyasch. I accept your comment that the wording could be improved. My complaint was about information being deleted altogether. OOXML is a controversial format, as any Google search will show. Criticism has come from many sources, so we can always add more references if you feel that the word "Some" doesn't cover it. We can also be specific about how it discourages competition. I'm happy for rewording, more references and improvement, rather than deletion. Thanks, Lester 06:38, 15 May 2008 (UTC)
You might find this reference useful,zdnet. It says that the BECTA complaint is being added to the existing complaint the EU is investigating. "Becta has now taken its interoperability complaint up to the Commission, to be folded into that wider investigation." It wasn't submitted to create a new complaint but to add new information for an existing one. AlbinoFerret (talk) 12:30, 18 May 2008 (UTC)

Controversial edits made by user MonirTime

I have reverted edits by MonirTime. The account is a single use account that shows knowledge of editing practices. The edits removed controversial topics still under discussion without any discussion. AlbinoFerret (talk) 04:38, 21 May 2008 (UTC)

"The threshold for inclusion in Wikipedia is verifiability, not truth—meaning, in this context, whether readers are able to check that material added to Wikipedia has already been published by a reliable source, not whether we think it is true." (Verifiability)
Furthermore "Assert facts, including facts about opinions—but do not assert the opinions themselves. When we discuss an opinion, we attribute the opinion to someone and discuss the fact that they have this opinion." (Neutral point of view).
And then "Wikipedia is not a publisher of original thought".
--MonirTime (talk) 08:04, 21 May 2008 (UTC)
Welcome to the wikilawyering club. Those principles do not state that widely held, well known and referenced opinions can be deleted from the article without prior discussion. Restored. --Alvestrand (talk) 09:09, 21 May 2008 (UTC)
From your own mouth ""The threshold for inclusion in Wikipedia is verifiability, not truth—meaning, in this context, whether readers are able to check that material added to Wikipedia has already been published by a reliable source, not whether we think it is true." Your edits removed referenced information [12] [13]. Your account was created within seconds of your first edit. You showed a knowledge of wikipedia jargon in the edit comments, and you now quote rules. These are red flags waving in the face of people who have watched controversial articles. AlbinoFerret (talk) 13:26, 21 May 2008 (UTC)

Office 2007 will support ODF but not yet ISO OOXML

Hello

according to Office will support ODF will support ODF, but still not the ISO OOXML format. This fact should be in the Office 2007 article, but may be also in here. Any comments? Oub (talk) 16:03, 22 May 2008 (UTC)

I added this and hopefully have made it clear - David Gerard (talk) 20:29, 23 May 2008 (UTC)

South African appeal to ISO

As I understand it, with the South African appeal against the vote, the ISO version is now only DIS 29500 and not ISO/IEC 29500 unless and until the appeal is resolved. I've edited the article accordingly. If my understanding is incorrect, please do correct! - David Gerard (talk) 20:29, 23 May 2008 (UTC)

Actually that is not correct. In ISO naming DIS 29500 refers to the draft version as submitted into the fasttracking proces. ISO/IEC 29500 refers to the approved version. So allthough ISO/IEC 29500 is not yet a fully completed and published ISO standard the naming is already changed from the draft version and that ISO/IEC 29500 naming is now in use on the ISO site. hAl (talk) 23:54, 23 May 2008 (UTC)
Ah, OK, please fix :-) - David Gerard (talk) 09:08, 24 May 2008 (UTC)

Controversial edit made by user HAl

I am adding the referenced claim to this section that is at the heart of this.

Microsoft, whose products use the current version of Office Open XML, has not committed to use the specification for any length of time. According to a Techworld article, "to organisations that need a well-defined, XML-based format to manage huge numbers of documents that may be archived for decades, this is important. These customers want a standard that Microsoft will promise to use - even if it's not convenient for the company's plans."[1]

The section is referenced and makes a distinction between the products (like Office 14) and the specification for a file format (OOXML)AlbinoFerret (talk) 15:50, 24 May 2008 (UTC)

I have replaced a referenced criticism removed by user HAl [14]. The criticism is referenced and to my knowledge truthful. Microsoft has not committed to using any form of OOXML for any length of time. AlbinoFerret (talk) 03:45, 24 May 2008 (UTC)

Actually Micrsoft has already comitted to using ISO/IEC 29500 in their future version of MS Office, (currently designated Office 14) which might arrive in 2010/2011.
http://www.microsoft.com/Presspass/press/2008/may08/05-21ExpandedFormatsPR.mspx
As Microsoft gives extended support to such versions at a minimum of ten year after the product is released ( MS Office#Support lifecycle )this mean Microsoft has committed to supporting the format to at least 2020. So if anybody if doing the controversial edits it is actually you because you add old info which was already weak to begin with as the article actually already holds a reference containing an open letter that Microsoft was committed to supporting the ISO/IEC 29500 in their products. hAl (talk) 07:08, 24 May 2008 (UTC)
Microsoft has not guaranteed to use and keep the implementation of OOXML in ISO/IEC 29500. They say they have a roadmap to put it in place. But until Office 14 is actually released, ISO/IEC 29500 is not even guaranteed to be included. Ever hear of Vaporware? The extended support is for Office 14, it is not for ISO/IEC 29500. Microsoft could remove ISO/IEC 29500 with an update, not update it to the current form of ISO/IEC 29500 if its changed, or change OOXML to be incompatible with ISO/IEC 29500. Even the open letter does not pledge a time fraim that they will use ISO/IEC 29500. It is as carefully worded as any politicians speech I have ever read. It uses a lot of words but never says they will use ISO/IEC 29500 until any specific date, not even to a year. Your links do not disprove what the original reference claims. I am replacing the referenced claim, provide a reference with a date, or leave it in place. AlbinoFerret (talk) 11:27, 24 May 2008 (UTC)
The comment that Microsoft will support ISO/IEC is made in an official press release and in an open letter. This is more commitment than any other software company has pledged for the future of any format. Unless you come up with any evidence that these statment are a lie then this is enough evidence of showing commitment. Your referenced claim predates the references I just gave you. So clearly Microsoft has confirmed their commitment afer the info you added and thius invalidated your referenced source information. But in all fairness for comparisons you could possibly point me to a place where for instance IBM gives you a 100% guaranteed commitment to supporting ODF beyond 2020 ????? hAl (talk) 11:34, 24 May 2008 (UTC)
The statements dont give a date, or even a year. That Microsoft put out so called commitment statements afterwards without giving a date does not matter. The reference is still good unless Microsoft actually gives a time based commitment. Be aware that you have reverted this 3 times already. AlbinoFerret (talk) 11:42, 24 May 2008 (UTC)
Actually you have already reverted the removal of this info 4 times [15][16][17][18]. hAl (talk) 12:20, 24 May 2008 (UTC)
But not within 24hours as you have. You have now reverted 4 times within 24 hours and a report has been filed. AlbinoFerret (talk) 12:52, 24 May 2008 (UTC)
Seeing as its your second violation of the rule, you might want to change it back with a comment you didnt see the 3RR violation. That is unless you think it will go in your favor and you wont be banned for a week or more.AlbinoFerret (talk) 12:55, 24 May 2008 (UTC)
The official press release says it is placing OOXML in Office 14. There is nothing on the page that says that Microsoft is commited to OOXML for any length of time and you cant say that the support for Office 14 is the exact same as OOXML by that letter. You are doing original research by reading into it something that isn't there.. AlbinoFerret (talk) 11:49, 24 May 2008 (UTC)
No, It is likely to be a lot longer than that. 10 years support is the minimum support Micrsoft gives on their major software products after its release. hAl (talk) 12:20, 24 May 2008 (UTC)
But OOXML is a format, not a major software release. You are confusing support for Office 14 with support for OOXML. There is nothing in any link you have given that says a date or support cycle for OOXML.AlbinoFerret (talk) 12:52, 24 May 2008 (UTC)
I am not confusing anything. If you buy a Office 14 copy in 2010/2011 with OOXML it it will still be working at 2020. You argumnets are feeble. Microsoft has stated commitment. Your referenced info was not aware of that stated commitment and is therefore old. You need to find references that are aware of the stated commitment for the future and still calim there is not commitment for them to have any value in the article. hAl (talk) 14:34, 24 May 2008 (UTC)
If Office 14 has OOXML, you might be able to claim that, but not according to WP:NOTCRYSTAL it is a future event. Until it is released your argument that it in any way is a cause to remove referenced material is wrong. There is no guarantee that a year after its release Office 14 will have OOXML. That it will have a compatible implementation. The commitment is to Office 14, not OOXML. I need not find any reference other than what was in place. You have no reference that proves a commitment to OOXML for any length of time. OOXML is not Office 14. Even so according to WP:VER "The threshold for inclusion in Wikipedia is verifiability, not truth". It is verified, it has references. Your continued removal of referenced claims is at issue. AlbinoFerret (talk) 15:01, 24 May 2008 (UTC)
As for the reference suggested by AlbinoFerret This reference actually supports it claims with a quote form a single Micrsoft emplyee stating:

We’ll of course stay active and propose changes based on where we want to go with Office 14. At the end of the day, though, the other Ecma members could decide to take the spec in a completely different direction. ... Since it’s not guaranteed, it would be hard for us to make any sort of official statement.

And exactly what has happened since then is that Microsoft has made a statment on Office 14. So exactly what the refernece used to state no commitment had been made and cites as evidence of no commitment has now been changed and this required commitment on Office 14 has been officially stated in an official Micrsoft pressrelease. hAl (talk) 14:58, 24 May 2008 (UTC)
Your reference proves there is no commitment. OOXML is not Office 14. One is a format to save files in (OOXML) the other is a major application (Office 14. Do not confuse the other. What applies to one , does not necessarily apply to the other.AlbinoFerret (talk) 15:03, 24 May 2008 (UTC)
It is also telling that Microsoft in Office 13 has not implemented the ISO/IEC 29500 and will not. ISO/IEC 29500 will not be implemented until Office 14, until some future date and version. Then they will not say how long they will commit to having the same implementation. That is the heart of the section HAl keeps removing. AlbinoFerret (talk) 15:57, 24 May 2008 (UTC)
There is no such thing as Office 13. Perhaps you mean Office 2007, which is version 12? Also, your assertions that Microsoft "will not" implement ISO/IEC 29500 in Office 2007 is something you really shouldn't be trying to claim, because such claims don't belong in the encyclopedia per WP:NOTCRYSTAL. and besides that, you don't know for sure. You can't prove it. They may change their mind about it based on customer feedback, a sudden outbreak of common-sense, or whatever other reason. -/- Warren 18:57, 24 May 2008 (UTC)
Look at the story here. Read the quotes - "One way to look at it is the prioritization of formats. We reach a point in time where we have to decide whether to continue to invest in a previous version [of Office] or to cut the cord and move forward." From this, it's clear that as of now, it's not speculation but a well-thought decision. Of course, if there's an overwhelming outcry, then they may reconsider adding support for Office 2007. They're committed to not supporting OXML in 2007, committed to supporting OXML in Office 14 and then they'll get a v2 OXML standard ratified and commit to support it in Office 15. Unless the support the newest standard in the older product, there's going to be *some* loss of document fidelity. - xpclient Talk 21:24, 24 May 2008 (UTC)
Re:Warren Yes I meant Office 2007, the story here [19] details that Office 2007 will not be getting the OOXML version in ISO/IEC 29500. That will not show at least until Office 14. But to say that Microsoft has committed to the specification for any length of time is wrong. They have only put in place a roadmap to implement it. We all know that plans change, Microsoft has changed its plans numerous times in the past, and probably will again in the future. We also cant say they have said in print that they are committed to any format for any length of time. They have stated commitment to support the applications that use these formats. But, as is evidenced by the announced service pack, formats can be added, if they can be added they can be removed. I didnt place in the article that Office 2007 will never get ISO/IEC 29500. Please read the section at the top, this is what we are discussing being removed. I didnt add the criticism in the first place, but I believe it to be the truth. As I see it we have way to many biased editors removing things from this article. I would be happy to see something removed if it was wrong, but so far it has only been shown to be the truth. AlbinoFerret (talk) 23:02, 24 May 2008 (UTC)
Re:xpclient But have they committed to anything? They have a roadmap, but is it a commitment? Is it also a commitment for any length of time? Has Microsoft said they guarantee that in Office 14 that they will have ISO/IEC 29500 in place and follow the specification for any length of time? That they will not add anything, or remove anything. If you now of such a statement, please provide a link. AlbinoFerret (talk) 23:11, 24 May 2008 (UTC)

I have filed for a third opinion. AlbinoFerret (talk) 15:30, 24 May 2008 (UTC)

Third Opinion

  • I don't see any commitment in the Microsoft announcement. Here it is hAl that try to look in the Crystal Ball`when he write: As Microsoft gives extended support to such versions at a minimum of ten year after the product is released ( MS Office#Support lifecycle )this mean Microsoft has committed to supporting the format to at least 2020. Microsoft text states that (OOXML) is already substantially supported in Office 2007, and the company plans to update that support in the next major version release of the Microsoft Office system, code-named “Office 14.”. They maybe plan to stick to the ISO standard by that time, but they can also update OOXML definition by then (and doing so not complying with the ISO standard) and still comply to their current statement. Everything is possible. AlbinoFerret removed text was not Microsoft "will not" implement ISO/IEC 29500 in Office 2007 (which would have been a questionable assertion, even if probably true), but Microsoft, whose products use the current version of Office Open XML, has not committed to use the specification for any length of time, which is exact, considering that they never wrote anywhere (for the moment) that they will implement (exactly) the ISO standard. Also commitment is not the same as plan to. Microsoft Open Specification Promise is a commitment, the referenced Microsoft announcement is not. Hervegirod (talk) 19:20, 24 May 2008 (UTC)
Thank you for your input Hervegirod, since I don't see anything negative about the criticism I am going to add it again. Warren did make a comment above, but it was about a statement I made in this discussion that was never in the section we are discussing, nor was I planning on adding it. Here is a diff of what was added. AlbinoFerret (talk) 11:41, 25 May 2008 (UTC)
You state you do not see commitment in the MS staments. I cite literally form the refercens I gave above: we are committed to supporting the Open XML specification that is approved by ISO/IEC in our products. . What else is needed. This is beyond any doubt. and it clealry overrules any old reference that suggest that Microsoft has not stated commitment. hAl (talk) 09:29, 26 May 2008 (UTC)
There is no TIME guarentee. They could be fully committed today and not tomorrow. Find any reference that says they are committed for any length of TIME. Thats what the section you keep trying to remove says and I quote " has not committed to use the specification for any length of time.". AlbinoFerret (talk) 12:07, 26 May 2008 (UTC)
That is your intereptation an thus original research as your cited source states only no commitment for the near future and specifacally cites a MS employeee on supporting the format in MS Office 14 which Microsoft has since committed to. hAl (talk) 12:55, 26 May 2008 (UTC)
No that is not original research. Original research is reading into something that isnt in print by collecting information from various sources. The plain text quote from the reference says " has not committed to use the specification for any length of time.". Your references do not give any length of time at all. One cant collect information that isn't there. AlbinoFerret (talk) 13:16, 26 May 2008 (UTC)
But what you have done is a warped original research. You in the past have taken two references, one that says they have a committment , but no time. One that says Major application releases get support for a length of time, then combined the information that is nowhere in print together. But you cant even do that because they are discussing apples (applications) and oranges (file formats), you cant even compare the two.AlbinoFerret (talk) 13:19, 26 May 2008 (UTC)
I searched the techworld article reference for what you call a quote but it deos not contain the information you claim it has so i can only conclude that quoted text is original research. hAl (talk) 14:27, 26 May 2008 (UTC)
Quoted "in the coming years" that is a denial for any time based commitment. AlbinoFerret (talk) 14:35, 26 May 2008 (UTC)
In the coming years the commitment is already guaranteed by MS Office 2007 and MS Office 14 ssupporting the format. Any lenght of time is not unlimited amout of time. In fact by commiting to support in Office 14 the commitment is fully clear and 5 people now have removed that nonsense from the article. You are just trolling the article now. hAl (talk) 19:50, 26 May 2008 (UTC)
No HAl, that is a crystal ball, your own words "In the coming years" prove it. There is no commitment to a file format, only to those applications you list. The ooxml format can be removed, changed, or replaced at any time. As I see it , it is 5 and possibly 6 agreeing with me and you alone removing the section. There is only one other that has removed the section, thinking it may be better placed on the Critisism of Microsoft page. But Ghettoblaster has admited the claim and reference are valid. I think I know who is trolling. I am also warning you that you have already reverted it 3 times. After your ban for doing the exact same edits, it could be considered war editing. AlbinoFerret (talk) 20:14, 26 May 2008 (UTC)
If you are seriously suggesting that Microsoft will create a new MS Office version around the new ISO /IEC 29500 and then removed it from that same MS Office version again I can't take you seriously anymore. That is just a ludacrous suggestion without any basis in reality. Microsft has absolutly the best record of all software companies in staying compatible with their own file formats over long periods of time. And now you are suggesting they will do some kind of quick support en then removal of a new ISO format. How can we take such comments serious. If you base your edits on such unsubstantiated ideas then I would certainly require you to give some kind of reference for Microsoft being expected to implementen de format in the next office version and then removed it from that same office version agian. Because if supported by office 2007 en the next office version as has Micrsoft has committed to your refernece suggesting no commitment is made is just overruled by commitment of MS statede after your reference article was written. hAl (talk) 22:17, 26 May 2008 (UTC)
Ok HAl here is a reference embrace, extend and extinguish, its the modus operandi of Microsoft. There is no commitment, nothing stating how long they will support any version of ooxml, not even one saying a few months or a year, the big goose egg, 0. The reason people want a commitment to the standard is because of the dirty tricks Microsoft has played in the past, but thats not in the claim. They don't even have to stop using the format, just change it ever so slightly from the ISO/IEC 29500 standard. Numerous people have agreed that the section should be included. But I don't have to prove anything to you. You are not in charge of the article. You have no right to remove referenced claims other editors have added. AlbinoFerret (talk) 00:21, 27 May 2008 (UTC)
You should read up on your classics. This has nothing to to with EEE as it this is MS technology to begin with. Your arguments are getting further from reality by the minute. The only clear statements are that Microsoft has stated commitment explictly and has stated to support the ISO standard in its prodcut and more specifcally in MS Office and in a SDK. Commitment has therefore been proven and your statemets are just trolling the article. I will keep removing your ridiculous claims and your abuse of the articles critsism section. hAl (talk) 21:20, 28 May 2008 (UTC)
I have added the section again. But this time I edited it a little to make it match the article it references in one point. That there is no commitment to conform to the official ooxml standard. This should make mute all the but they are committed to implementing it arguments. They have not committed to conform to the specification they pushed through. So far no conforming implementation of ISO/IEC 29500 exists in any Micrsoft product. AlbinoFerret (talk) 11:43, 27 May 2008 (UTC)
You are wrong hal, get over it. You have been trying to remove this a long time. Kilz (talk) 14:56, 26 May 2008 (UTC)
Back from your second ban as a sockpuppeter modifying this article Kilz ? Wrong is not a word you should use. Actually there now have been 5 people removeing the incorrect stament form the article and alibno ferret keeps readding it and now you started helping. You are of course stating all those people are wrong to ???
You might be interested in the Microsoft OOXML SDK roadmap. Ghettoblaster (talk) 20:17, 26 May 2008 (UTC)
  • The big problem that I see here is that this is NOT criticism of Office Open XML. It is just criticism of Microsoft and Office 14 which hasn't even been released yet. IMHO you should not mix up both in one "Criticism" section. Ghettoblaster (talk) 19:51, 25 May 2008 (UTC)
Considering that Office Open XML is primarily the Office native format (before being an ECMA or ISO standard), and that the ISO version of the standard has no implementation yet, I think that the text that AlbinoFerret added belongs to this article, in the Criticism section or another. It may explain why some ODF implementors (other than Microsoft) have chosen to stick to the ECMA standard rather than the ISO version. Hervegirod (talk) 20:10, 25 May 2008 (UTC)
The most important reason why some vendors "have chosen to stick to the ECMA standard" might be that the ISO version hasn't even been published yet, whereas the Ecma version is already supported by a large number of different vendors and products. However, the guesswork that Microsoft might not support OOXML for any length of time is still not criticism of the OOXML format itself. Ghettoblaster (talk) 20:33, 25 May 2008 (UTC)
It is not guesswork, it is a direct quote from the article. That Microsoft, who has submitted and pushed the OOXML format is not committed to its use for any length of time. Not the version in Office 2007 , or that in Office 14, or any version of OOXML.AlbinoFerret (talk) 22:34, 25 May 2008 (UTC)
The point here is that this article that you are quoting is criticizing Microsoft for not committing to use OOXML for any length of time. It does not criticize the OOXML specification which is supported by a number of independent vendors even without Microsoft's explicit commitment. Ghettoblaster (talk) 23:01, 25 May 2008 (UTC)
Do you actually believe for one second that if Microsoft dropped plans to use OOXML, that any other vendor would implement it? The reason it has any vendor implementing it is the huge install base of Microsoft Office that uses or will use the format. Microsoft has a de facto standard.[20] because of that, it is important to OOXML's future install base and the vendors that implement it that Microsoft commit to ooxml and not change it. Otherwise what happens is a classic situation where no one will blame Microsoft. If Microsoft changes the implementation and other vendors stay with the official standard the complaint will be that the others are broke. Its a variation on the classic embrace, extend and extinguish, [21] only in this case they control the format, they dont have to embrace it. They can extend it while everyone else is playing catch up. End users would then be stuck with the Microsoft implementation and Microsoft would again have vendor lock in. This is an important consideration for governments that must keep documents for long periods of time, they do not want that lock in. This is the point of the article and criticism. Why would other vendors not change also? Simple the OSP, that only protects them if they follow the official standard. AlbinoFerret (talk) 03:18, 26 May 2008 (UTC)
As you're repeatedly stating, "the heart of critisism is microsoft" and not the OOXML specification. Although the quoted and referenced criticism of Microsoft's commitment is valid, it is obvious that you're misusing this section. I suggest moving the quote and reference to the article Criticism of Microsoft where it belongs. Ghettoblaster (talk) 12:32, 26 May 2008 (UTC)
The specification is only valuable and implemented and used because of Microsofts use of it. They are the principle driving force in its development up until it was submitted, and Microsoft products have the largest population of applications that use the format, it has the de facto standard[22].So yes it is a criticism of Microsoft in a way, but not specifically and only about Microsoft, but has direct bearing on the ooxml specification because of the monopoly power of Microsoft using the standard. Perhaps is should go on both pages. AlbinoFerret (talk) 13:34, 26 May 2008 (UTC)
hmm I'm not sure. See here the blog of a project coordinator in the danish OpenOffice.org project. Also here. It seems they focus on the ECMA standard, and what Lodhal write is The purpose is not to support an academic developed file format, but to help the poor users who by accident get hands on a document from Microsoft Office 2007. Hervegirod (talk) 20:47, 25 May 2008 (UTC)
OUTSIDE OPINION The sources pretty clearly disagree. Putting a section stating that sources disagree over Microsoft's commitment would be extraneous; I'd say leave the section out. JeremyMcCracken (talk) (contribs) 13:41, 26 May 2008 (UTC)
There is no difference of opinion in the sources. Microsoft has never stated that it will commit to any version of OOXML for any amount of time. But yes a section that says there is a difference of opinion from the sources would be a bad idea. AlbinoFerret (talk) 13:58, 26 May 2008 (UTC)
I have reverted this edit, because it removes useful, cited information. If there is another perspective, add it without removing the current source. Superm401 - Talk 19:52, 26 May 2008 (UTC)

New Reference

I searched for a new reference this morning and found one. As a result I have done some editing, first to the orignal claim to make it conform to the reference, I then added the new reference. Here is the section as it now reads.

Microsoft, whose products use the current version of Office Open XML, has not committed to conform to the officially standardized OOXML specification for any length of time. According to a Techworld article, "to organisations that need a well-defined, XML-based format to manage huge numbers of documents that may be archived for decades, this is important. These customers want a standard that Microsoft will promise to use - even if it's not convenient for the company's plans."[2] Tim Bray, the inventor of XML believes that "Microsoft is unlikely to bother to keep conformant with the OOXML standard as it develops within ISO". Alex Brown hoped that they would conform as it would stop them from a "file-format rug-pulling stunt in future" [3]

The original claim should have said that they were not committed to conform to ISO/IEC 29500, for some reason it was left out. The second reference shows that others, including the inventor of xml thinks Microsoft will not conform. Along with it is the reason why they need to conform. AlbinoFerret (talk) 13:23, 27 May 2008 (UTC)

OOXML is not a standard

The opening sentence of the article currently incorrectly states: "Office Open XML (also referred to as OOXML or OpenXML) is a free and open international standard for representing electronic documents such as spreadsheets, charts, presentations and word processing documents." I challenge this. It is a proposed format, that is proposed to be a standard. The format hasn't even been completed yet. It is a future product, and should carry the "Future Product" tag at the top of page. The ISO process is being challenged, so it may never be ratified as a standard. Let me quote from PC World: "No one can now say, until this is resolved, that OOXML is a global standard".(reference) Lester 22:55, 25 May 2008 (UTC)

OOXML is already a free and open standard. See: Ecma 376 Ghettoblaster (talk) 23:03, 25 May 2008 (UTC)
Hi Ghettoblaster. Ecma ratified the Office2007 format. The ISO demanded so many major changes that Office2007 and OOXML/OXML are now different formats. The changes for OXML are so extensive that Microsoft will take years to implement them. OXML/OOXML hasn't even been published or released yet, which is one of South Africa's complaints. So we must separate the previously released Office2007 format, from the ISO/OXML version, which has not been published. Google for OOXML, then hit the 'news' search button, and you'll find more info regarding South Africa's complaint, and that it may be years before Microsoft releases OXML.Lester 23:11, 25 May 2008 (UTC)
Your comment that the changes are so extensive that MS will take years to implement them is incorrect. As Alex Brown found out with his validation tests, most of the differences are trivial, for example, change "yes" to "true" for some attributes, as far as the "compatability" schema is concerned. The MS decision not to bring out a service pack is purely a logistics/business/PR decision not a technical one as far as I can see. The "strict" schema however does have more changes, but the large ones (like completely removing VML) were things that MS were doing anyway.Rick Jelliffe (talk) 18:55, 15 July 2008 (UTC)
Ecma is an international standards body. If they say something is a standard, it's a standard. Same with ANSI, the W3C and OASIS for that matter. The fact that ISO hasn't ratified OOXML as a standard is an issue, yes, but they aren't the sole arbiters of the term "standard". -/- Warren 23:16, 25 May 2008 (UTC)
Yes, ECMA ratified the earlier Office 2007 format. The ISO won't be ratifying Office 2007. The ISO is proposing to ratify OOXML, or 'OXML' as Microsoft now likes to call it. OXML has had massive changes since the 2007 days, and is a new format. Only if the challenges are dismissed will the new version, OXML, become a standard. We can't say that the ISO ratified Office 2007. OXML has not yet been completed or published.Lester 01:25, 26 May 2008 (UTC)
This article doesn't state that ISO/IEC 29500 has been ratified. This article is about the Office Open XML standard, as included in Office 2007 and 2008, that has already been ratified by Ecma. It also covers some of the details about the ISO standardization process, which can be viewed as a sort of "version 2" of the standard. Remember that OpenDocument went through this evolution as well: OASIS ratified OpenDocument as a standard well before ISO did, but it was certainly a "free and open standard" in 2005, and ODF 1.0 is still the only ISO-approved standard, though OASIS has ratified 1.1, and no sane person would argue that ODF 1.1 isn't a "free and open standard" because ISO hasn't ratified it. Right? -/- Warren 02:22, 26 May 2008 (UTC)
Actually the Office 2007 formats based on the open standard Ecma 376 are already almost identical to the ISO /IEC standards transitional format. The major changes you suggest in the ISO standard are the creation of a strict conformance which Office 2007 does not support as of yet. hAl (talk) 09:47, 26 May 2008 (UTC)

How can the format possibly be described as "open", when it has not been fully published? Lester 16:34, 27 May 2008 (UTC)

  1. The standard has been fully published by the Ecma International standards organization.[4]
  2. The ISO agreed that it is an open standard when it approved OOXML for acceptance as an ISO/IEC standard.[5]
  3. The DIN and the Fraunhofer Institute of Open Communication Systems agree that it is an open standard.[6]
  4. The VDE agrees that it is an open standard.[7]
  5. ...
Ghettoblaster (talk) 18:06, 27 May 2008 (UTC)
This edit should be reverted. The justification for the edit has not been adequately explained. The explanation (above) that the ISO ratification means it's "free" and "open" completely ignores all the controversy, debate and protest going on at the ISO right now. Lester 11:46, 2 June 2008 (UTC)
I'm inclined to agree; whilst the wording could be argued to be technically correct, it is certainly misleading. The following two paragraphs do give an exact status of the proposal within ECMA ("passed") and ISO ("in limbo"). —Sladen (talk) 11:52, 2 June 2008 (UTC)
If "The following two paragraphs provide clarity as to ECMA/ISO status" then why do you prefer a misleading definition by highlighting the fact that it is just "a proposed ISO standard" and by dropping the fact that it is already a free and open international standard? I think we should add this back to the intro definition. Many standards get updated over time (just like ODF) and it always takes some time to officially standardize updated specifications. However, the fact that an updated version of the spec. hasn't been officially standardized/published yet, does not mean that the current standard isn't a free and open standard anymore. This is misleading. Ghettoblaster (talk) 12:20, 2 June 2008 (UTC)
As far as I can tell, the current wording (...an electronic document format, and a proposed ISO standard for representing spreadsheets, charts, presentations and word processing documents) is accurate and the same time does not mislead. I am currently considering adding your "Free file format" link to the word "freely" in the following ECMA 376 paragraph. However, no ISO standard is available, published, finalised, or free. Based on the 17% of amendments that were accepted during the BRM, such a standard will be incompatible with ECMA 376 and differ from it.
There are three variations of something referred to as "OOXML", under discussion within this article.
  1. A family of formats read/written by Microsoft Office 2007.
  2. ECMA 376
  3. DIS 29500
All of which overlap to a certain degree, but which are variously different in description and incompatible in implementation. I do recommend adding any "free document format" and "open" links to the ECMA 376 paragraph. But to add them to either of the other variants under discussion (MSO2007, DIS29500), I believe is inaccurate. —Sladen (talk) 12:37, 2 June 2008 (UTC)
AFAIK Office 2007 and Office 2008 (and all the other apps) use the current Ecma-376 standard. Is there any evidence (reliable source) that proves that this is actually not the case? Even in the possible case that there are currently bugs in the Ecma-376 implementation of MS Office, this does not really mean that MS Office implements a distinct file format from what is described in this article Ghettoblaster (talk) 13:50, 2 June 2008 (UTC)

People use the word "standard" in many different ways, and it is useless having conversations about standards that don't start on that basis. From the point of view of the standards organization, a document becomes a standard once it has gone through certain procedures, in particular a vote. Adoption as an ISO standard involves acceptance by vote and then publication: IS29500:2008 has been accepted with the effective text made from applying the editor's instructions from the Ballot Resolution Meeting to the draft text. The vote was on this effective text, and the final stage in the process is for the endorsed text (the version with the edits made and checked) published. This last stage has been suspended until the appeals are worked through. But saying that it is not a "global standard" in the sense of being universally adopted because it is not fully implemented is just playing with words, surely we have more constructive things to do? Rick Jelliffe (talk) 18:55, 15 July 2008 (UTC)

Misuse of OOXML "Criticism" section

AlbinoFerret is misusing the criticism section of this article by repeatedly adding material that does not qualify as either criticism of the Office Open XML specification or the Office Open XML standard. Instead he is using this page as a soapbox by adding material that is best characterized as criticism of Microsoft. I suggest moving the material in question (see above) to the article Criticism of Microsoft where it belongs. I also suggest removing the quote of Alex Brown from this section because his personal hopes are not relevant to this section. Furthermore, I suggest removing the crystal ball quote of Tim Bray from this section, which does not qualify as OOXML criticism either. Ghettoblaster (talk) 18:01, 27 May 2008 (UTC)

As Microsoft will have the largest installed base of computers running applications that use ooxml, they submitted ooxml, and were the major developer of it before it was submitted it is important information and a valid criticism of ooxml if they do not conform to the ISO/IEC 29500 specification. There is no reason why the information cant be on both articles if you think it should be on another article. But it is still a criticism of ooxml if its creator does not conform to it.
The reason it is important is because with such a large install base , Microsoft's implementation will be considered the standard because it is a de facto standard[23].It if proprietary extensions to the standard break implementations of other vendors who followed ISO/IEC 29500 it will be leverage to limit competition. Those other vendors would be forced to stay with ISO/IEC 29500 because the OSP only covers the standard, not things added to it. This would be a variation of embrace, extend and extinguish, and what Alex Brown was suggesting with the quote I added. All they have to do is extend as discussed here [24] and extinguish competition. Microsoft's monopoly position makes these concerns realistic.
Tim Bray as the creator of xml is sufficiently knowledgeable to question the ability of Microsoft to comply with ISO/IEC 29500. He is not discussing a future event like a release of an application. But using his experience and knowledge of the format and specification to reach a conclusion. That Microsoft has postponed using ISO/IEC 29500 until Office 14 reinforces this opinion. As the opinion was about Office 2007 implementing ISO/IEC 29500. In fact it isnt a future event at all but a proven fact that they cant.
Both are referenced word for word quotes. AlbinoFerret (talk) 22:10, 27 May 2008 (UTC)
  1. The fact that Microsoft does "not conform to the ISO/IEC 29500 specification" is already included in the article. This is not the quintessence of the material that you're trying to push into this section.
  2. Tim Bray does not "question the ability of Microsoft to comply with ISO/IEC 29500". He "believes" to know what Microsoft will do in the future. This is not criticism, this is speculation/gossip.
  3. The fact that Alex Brown "hopes" that Microsoft is going to conform to ISO/IEC 29500 (instead of embrace, extend and extinguish) is not criticism of OOXML, no matter how often you try to interpret what he ment to say.
  4. The fact that Office 2007 does not implement ISO/IEC 29500 is not a proof that Microsoft "can't" implement ISO/IEC 29500.
Ghettoblaster (talk) 23:13, 27 May 2008 (UTC)
  1. The fact that Microsoft has not committed to conform to the ISO/IEC 29500 is part of what was placed. The quotes are from a zdnet article. Word for word referenced quotes. I am adding nothing but those comments. I am pushing nothing.
  2. Perhaps Tim Bray's statment isnt a good fit, I have removed it.
  3. I have added a little more from Alex Brown, the statement from him directly gives a reason why conforming to ISO/IEC 29500 is desired by people who use the format to store documents. I also didn't place embrace, extend and extinguish in the article, but explained a possible reason for the comment he made. There may be other explanations.
  4. I never said or implied that Microsoft cant implement ISO/IEC 29500 at all, but that they either cant or wont implement it in Office 2007. I remember reading this someplace. AlbinoFerret (talk) 02:00, 28 May 2008 (UTC)
Here is the reference that Microsoft will not implement ISO/IEC 29500 in Office 2007. [25] AlbinoFerret (talk) 19:03, 28 May 2008 (UTC)
That isn't a criticism of the format, though... it's a criticism of Microsoft's implementation plans. Put such criticism in Criticism of Microsoft or Microsoft Office 2007. -/- Warren 21:46, 28 May 2008 (UTC)
It is a criticism of the format if the largest installed base of applications that use the a version of the format do not conform to the format specification. The criticism is important in that context, it is also important in that Microsoft has sad they wont support the specification in Office 2007. All this from the company that developed the file format and pushed it through the ISO. I have no problem placing the criticism in those articles, but I believe it belongs in this one as well.AlbinoFerret (talk) 00:33, 29 May 2008 (UTC)
You're wrong. You're letting your anti-Microsoft bias (which you know you have, and you know is what is what fuels you to argue so strongly on this topic) guide your actions here instead of doing the most sensible and pragmatic thing for the encyclopedia. What makes the most sense here (and you would know this if you had much editing experience on Wikipedia apart from arguing on this talk page) is that we need to describe the file format and criticisms thereof on this article, and we need to describe the application and criticisms thereof (including notable omissions), on the article about the application. The fact that Microsoft created version 1 of the standard is only tangentially related to the fact that their 18-month-old Office suite isn't going to support version 2 of the standard, which isn't even finished yet. -/- Warren 03:08, 29 May 2008 (UTC)
I will remind you to assume good faith, I have no bias pro or con of Microsoft. None. I take offense that you would suggest it. But I believe that the fact that Microsoft has not conformed or made a commitment to conform to ISO/IEC 29500 is important information for this article. This article has a list of applications that have implemented ooxml, if this is important to the article, why then is it not important that the company that created and submitted the format has not committed to conform to that same format specification. AlbinoFerret (talk) 14:03, 29 May 2008 (UTC)
In order to resolve the dispute about location, I have edited it slightly and changed the location from the criticism section to the implementation section. AlbinoFerret (talk) 14:47, 29 May 2008 (UTC)
I like this a lot better. -/- Warren 23:27, 29 May 2008 (UTC)
I agree that AlbinoFerret has been abusing the article to put forward his personal views and in particular the critisims section. This section has been attraction a lot of abuse in the past as well often more directed at Microsoft then at the Office Open XML format. If the abuse by AlbinoFerret continuous I think it might be time to remove this entire section from the article. hAl (talk) 21:24, 28 May 2008 (UTC)
It's one thing to disagree with AlbinoFerret, it is another to entirely delete a section from the article. I'm against the deletion of the Criticism section. Hervegirod (talk) 21:44, 28 May 2008 (UTC)
RE:HAl They are not my personal views but referenced quotes from news sites. This article is not yours, you cant remove sections. Your removal of the criticism on the basis of Office 14 is wrong because it fails WP:FUTURE as no release date has been even set. We therefore have no information if it will be released, and what will be included. Your past references say that Microsoft will support ooxml, in no way do they say that they will conform to the ISO/IEC 29500 in any product. AlbinoFerret (talk) 00:34, 29 May 2008 (UTC)
OOXML is one of the most controversial things to come from Microsoft, which itself is a controversial company. There are endless news stories and opinions which detail the criticism levelled against Microsoft regarding OOXML, from the most reliable sources out there. This must be reflected in this article, along with the responses from Microsoft. Criticism that is added needs to come from reliable sources and references must be added for each one. But to remove the criticism section from such a controversial subject as OOXML would create bias by omission. -Lester 02:57, 29 May 2008 (UTC)
Criticism of the file format is fine. The criticism being removed is targeted at Microsoft itself, and at Microsoft Office. If someone wants to write some text in to the Adoption section that explains that Microsoft has stated they have no plans to support ISO/IEC 29500 in Office 2007, that's just fine, but this isn't a criticism of the file format. -/- Warren 03:12, 29 May 2008 (UTC)
The criticism was of Microsoft's delay in implementing OOXML itself, in its Office software. Criticism of how Microsoft intends to implement OOXML is valid. It's possible the information could have been worded better, but it should still be retained. OOXML is controversial, and criticism of it is part of that controversy and needs to be included in this article. We can't just palm the criticism off to other articles all the time. It's got to be in this one. Lester 03:32, 29 May 2008 (UTC)
Your suggestions are getting more ridiculous every day. Now you claim that the stated commitment should not be relevant because it about a product in the future but on the other hand you claim MS does not provide commitment to the future. You might not have noticed but since the ISO-IEC standard has not been publisehed the commitment you require can only be in future software as it does not currnetly exist yet! Your arguments are just so wrong in so many levels that I really wonder what you are trying except abusing the article. hAl (talk) 06:10, 29 May 2008 (UTC)
User AlbinoFerret stated Your past references say that Microsoft will support ooxml, in no way do they say that they will conform to the ISO/IEC 29500 in any product.. That claim by user AlbinoFerret is just deception or plain lies. The references I gave are actually VERY CLEAR on supporting the actual ISO/IEC standard:

Microsoft has defined a road map for its implementation of the newly ratified International Standard ISO/IEC 29500 (Office Open XML).

Source: http://www.microsoft.com/Presspass/press/2008/may08/05-21ExpandedFormatsPR.mspx

we are committed to supporting the Open XML specification that is approved by ISO/IEC in our products.

Source: Microsoft open letter hAl (talk) 06:22, 29 May 2008 (UTC)
You can not claim that Microsoft will conform to ISO/IEC 29500. There is no evidence. There is a huge difference between claims of supporting a format and conforming to one. You cant claim facts about software that hasn't been released, That doesnt have its features set, that doesn't have a date set for even a beta let alone a release, voids referenced quotes saying they have not conformed. One is the present, one may be true in the future. Wikipedia is not a crystal ball, it is not a place where referenced quotes are removed because of what might happen in the future. So far everyone in this section thinks the information may be better placed someplace else. You are the only one saying it is wrong. AlbinoFerret (talk) 14:03, 29 May 2008 (UTC)
I do not claim they will conform because I can't predict the future. However I do claim that Microsoft have already shown their commitment to conform/IEC 29500. Something which you claimed to be not the case. So your claims were wrong. As for the crystal ball future, if tomorrow a big asteroid fell on Redmond it would be unlikely that MS would conform (or exist). hAl (talk) 14:17, 29 May 2008 (UTC)
User AlbinoFerret states Wikipedia is not acrystal ball but triest to suggest in the article that MS will not conform to the ISO/IEC format (uncited info) even though he now finally seems to admit that Microsoft has committed to support that future format in their future products. Who is the one using the crytal ball? The person clearly showing the fully referenced current commitment or the person suggesting something about future non-conformance ? hAl (talk) 14:28, 29 May 2008 (UTC)
No, they have not said one word about conforming. In the techworld article it was asked

"whether Microsoft would actually commit to conform to an officially standardised OOXML"

. The response was

"It’s hard for Microsoft to commit to what comes out of Ecma [the European standards group that has already OK’d OOXML] in the coming years, because we don’t know what direction they will take the formats."

That reference asks if they will conform, the answer they cant commit to that. You have no reference that says they will conform, only support.
Neither have I said they cant or in the future commit to conforming, but that they have not committed to conform in the present. You have no reference saying they have committed to conforming to ISO/IEC 29500 at any time. AlbinoFerret (talk) 14:37, 29 May 2008 (UTC)
Apparently nobody paid much attention to the OOXML SDK reference that I posted earlier this week. Here is a Microsoft quote about ISO/IEC 29500 compliance:[26]

"Compliant with the final ISO/IEC spec? Yes, from version 1.0 There's one final detail about the SDK I'd like to clarify, which relates to Gareth Horton's point above about the spec changes accepted at the BRM. When I talked to reporters earlier in the week I wasn't certain about whether we'd have all the final ISO changes in version 1.0 of the SDK, and I was careful to not represent that we would. Well, I seem to have underestimated our dev team: I've now verified that version 1.0 will definitely be 100% compliant with the final ISO/IEC 29500 spec, including the changes accepted at the BRM. So starting in April you'll be able to build applications that are compliant with the final spec, and in May when we release version 1.0 you'll be able to go live and ship products built on the API. Time to get coding!"

See the reference for more details on the SDK roadmap. Ghettoblaster (talk) 20:43, 29 May 2008 (UTC)
What we need to do is to provide both sides of the story, and attribute each claim to the organization that made it. For example, you can say "Microsoft stated it would conform", but you also need to provide the alternate view, as there has been a lot of scepticism about Microsoft's conformance claim. There is a multitude of news items from reliable sources which detail the scepticism, if you search in Google News. Lester 21:20, 29 May 2008 (UTC)
RE:Ghettoblaster Its nice to hear that their development tools may be compliant. But since the information comes from a blog it may be best to wait and see if it actually is. Blogs are not generally known for reliability. AlbinoFerret (talk) 02:16, 30 May 2008 (UTC)
Again however Ghettoblaster has shown the commitment by MS to support and in this case be fully compliant to the official ISO/IEC 29500 standard in their future products.
FYI, Doug Mahugh is not a random blogger, he is "a Senior Product Manager at Microsoft specializing in Office client interoperability and the Open XML file formats".[27] Is his statement more reliable when he makes it in an interview for ZDNet rather than posting it on his official blog at msdn.com? Ghettoblaster (talk) 09:48, 30 May 2008 (UTC)
According to WP:VER and WP:RS yes, it is generally preferable to use an independent news site like Zdnet than a blog. AlbinoFerret (talk) 12:52, 30 May 2008 (UTC)
Here is a ComputerWorld article that quotes Doug Mahugh:[28]

The SDK will enable developers to write applications that can open, read and otherwise work with OOXML documents, or port existing applications that work with documents in older Microsoft formats over to OOXML, Mahugh said. Moreover, the SDK will "put Microsoft on the hook to keep your app in line with the OOXML standard" as it changes, he said. For instance, if national members of ISO decide at the end of this month to approve the OOXML specification — which has been changed substantially since its failure to pass last September — those changes will be reflected in Version 1.0 of the SDK, Mahugh said. And Microsoft would continue to update the SDK to make sure that applications built with it remained compliant with an Open XML standard as changes were made in the future, he said.

Ghettoblaster (talk) 23:43, 30 May 2008 (UTC)
Thats great, maybe now Microsoft Office applications and others will be able to be brought up to conforming to the specifications. I cant wait to see it actually happen. AlbinoFerret (talk) 12:12, 31 May 2008 (UTC)
Then the techwworld article CITED ME VERY BADLY because it was actually me that Brian Jones was responding to and I stated: It would be good if Microsoft would state offically it's intent to support future development and improvement of the standard in Ecma of new version of the format and that it intents those version to get simular open licensing. So now you also shown me that the Techworld article has cited me incorrectly suggesting things I did not say and it is total rubbish to use it based on that incorrect quote of what I stated. hAl (talk) 05:38, 30 May 2008 (UTC)
The only problem with that is it is original research. AlbinoFerret (talk) 12:52, 30 May 2008 (UTC)
Actually My statement and the response from Brian Jones are nicely preserved here. As you can easily see the techworld suggesting that Brian was asked about conformance is incorrect as he react to the stament I gave above. So your sourcing is has proven invalid on the point of that there are questions about conformance. Any such statement is therefore clearly incorrect. hAl (talk) 16:32, 30 May 2008 (UTC)
I have read the page, your question

"It would be good if Microsoft would state offically it's intent to support future development and improvement of the standard in Ecma"

I now have 2 articles that read the answer to that question you asked. Both of them read this answer.

To your last point, it's hard for Microsoft to commit to what comes out of Ecma in the coming years, because we don't know what direction they will take the formats. We'll of course stay active and propose changes based on where we want to go with Office 14. At the end of the day though, the other Ecma members could decide to take the spec in a completely different direction. Now my impression is that won't happen, as the folks on the TC all have pretty similar visions for the future of the spec, but since it's not guaranteed it would be hard for us to make any sort of official statement.

Both references see this as a microsoft employee saying they cant commit to implement exactly , or conform to changes that happen to ooxml in Ecma. Since Emca is the place where maintence of ISO/IEC 29500 will take place, we can say that Microsoft has declined to commit to conform to ISO/IEC 29500 not just the Ecma 376 specification.
You now come in and say that its wrong, well more than one site sees it this way. They are referenced claims. While you do have the words preserved, they don't match what you are doing. AlbinoFerret (talk) 18:30, 30 May 2008 (UTC)

Future Product tag

The Future Product tag, which someone recently deleted, is standard labelling for any product that hasn't yet been officially released to the public. While we have word processors that can save a file in 'Office 2007' format, there are currently no applications that can save in 'OOXML' or 'OXML' format, and the 2007 specification is a different format to the specification that will eventually be known as OXML. It appears it will be years away until Microsoft releases such an application. Additionally, the specification hasn't yet even been published. The tag says the article "may contain preliminary information that does not reflect the final version of the product", which is appropriate at this stage in OOXML's development. This may change at a future time. Lester 02:03, 30 May 2008 (UTC)

As Office Open XML has been an open published standard for more than 1,5 years and is freely available since that time, it is not a future product. The published ISO version of Office Open XML is still a future product but that is only a newer improved version of the format that the article is about hAl (talk) 05:21, 30 May 2008 (UTC).
Yes, I guess it boils down to your definition of whether the original Office 2007 is one and the same thing as OXML, as Microsoft likes to call it now. I tend to think of Office 2007 as the previous one, and OXML being a new standard based on Office 2007, and that OXML has not been fully published yet. I assume that in a few years, when Microsoft finally releases a word processor that will save the the new ISO document specification, you'll have a drop-down dialog box that gives you the choice of saving in either Office 2007 format or OXML format. They will be defined by those names.Lester 06:57, 30 May 2008 (UTC)
I think your referral to Office is already not relevant as that is only one implementation out of many as is evident from the long list of supporting applications for the format and those are all based on the current Ecma specification of Office Open XML that can be freely downloaded. How the will become known is still uncertain but the textprocessing files might wel become know as docx (similar to jpeg) even though docx is not a required extension for an Office Open XML file. hAl (talk) 07:23, 30 May 2008 (UTC)
Re:Lester I can see your point, until ISO/IEC 29500 has been published and avilable it hasn't been technically released. Now with the appeals of the standard being filed, its not possible to be 100% cretin that it will be a standard.AlbinoFerret (talk) 15:26, 30 May 2008 (UTC)

Why not call things by their formal names: ECMA 376, IS29500:2008 (Strict or Compatability), and use Office Open XML strictly only when a non-specific version is meant? And you could even use "The Office 2007 default save format" if it is important to distinguish the actuality from the formality! By the way, the "IS" there means "International Standard" and is usually forms part of the name: the numbers after the ":" refer to the year of the version in question. So I expect IS29500:2008 to be superceded by IS29500:2009.Rick Jelliffe (talk) 19:05, 15 July 2008 (UTC)

Standardization of Office Open XML

This section is relatively straightforward now. However, the "main" article, Standardization of Office Open XML, needs to be copyedited heavily, and updated with appeals, etc. Anyone want to dive in?

Also, anyone want to try summarising the grounds of the three appeals? These three should be all the appeals (at least for this first level of appeals) by the deadline of Thu May 29 - David Gerard (talk) 16:20, 30 May 2008 (UTC)

Removed reference using wrong citation

I would like to ask .AlbinoFerret to stop using a Techworld reference that states In July, Jones was asked on his blog whether Microsoft would actually commit to conform to an officially standardised OOXML. whereas actually Brian Jones responded to me stating It would be good if Microsoft would state offically it's intent to support future development and improvement of the standard in Ecma of new version of the format and that it intents those version to get simular open licensing. [29]. I do not like my words mangled by techworld especially as AlbinoFerret claims these words to be a source where MS did not commit to conform to the format and neither my statement nor the answer by Brian Jones even contained the word conform or conformance like the techworld articel suggest. Since that statement where Brian Jones could not commit to future format as it was not clear which way the format specification would go a new version format has emerged from the ISO standardization proces and Microsoft has commited to use that ISO format version in their products and specifically in MS Office 144 making the stament of Vrian Jones ancient history. hAl (talk) 18:34, 30 May 2008 (UTC)

I have read the page, your question

"It would be good if Microsoft would state offically it's intent to support future development and improvement of the standard in Ecma"

I now have 2 articles that read the answer to that question you asked. Both of them read this answer.

To your last point, it's hard for Microsoft to commit to what comes out of Ecma in the coming years, because we don't know what direction they will take the formats. We'll of course stay active and propose changes based on where we want to go with Office 14. At the end of the day though, the other Ecma members could decide to take the spec in a completely different direction. Now my impression is that won't happen, as the folks on the TC all have pretty similar visions for the future of the spec, but since it's not guaranteed it would be hard for us to make any sort of official statement.

Both references see this as a Microsoft employee saying they cant commit to implement exactly , or conform to changes that happen to ooxml in Ecma. Since Emca is the place where maintenance of ISO/IEC 29500 will take place, we can say that Microsoft has declined to commit to conform to ISO/IEC 29500 not just the Ecma 376 specification.
You now come in and say that its wrong, well more than one site sees it this way. They are referenced claims. While you do have the words preserved, they don't match what you are doing. The newest reference is from this year. You cant use a crystal ball to remove referenced claims siting what will be included in Office 14, it doesnt have a set of features released, or a release date AlbinoFerret (talk) 18:38, 30 May 2008 (UTC)
Actually the commitment was mentioned by Brina Jones and is valid in the reference. However an official statement on that commitment has come after your references were published making the commitment issue null and void. Only one of your sources states anything about commitment to conform and not as an interpretation of Brina Jones words but as an interpretation the stament he responded to. My stament. And that clearly says nothing about conformance (or commitment for that matter). If you keep editting in some cited interpretation of what I said even though you have access to the original cited text that I originally wrote it is pure malice towards me. hAl (talk) 18:48, 30 May 2008 (UTC)
It doesn't matter if you or Brian Jones used the word commit. The techworld article uses it. The author of the techworld article read the information and used that word. Brian Jones is responding to a question of committing to follow what Ecma does with the specification in the future. Thats called conforming. The answer is saying they cant because Ecma might do something Microsoft may not want to implement in Office 14. The second reference makes exactly that same point. It also spells out that what is being talked about is ISO/IEC 29500 because Ecma will be the organization that is in charge of maintenance of ISO/IEC 29500. This is not my interpretation , but the interpretation of 2 separate news sites. That is exactly what we should do according to WP:RS

Articles should rely on reliable, third-party published sources with a reputation for fact-checking and accuracy. This means that we only publish the opinions of reliable authors, and not the opinions of Wikipedians who have read and interpreted primary source material for themselves.

That section says we can and should use the published opinions of credible sources.AlbinoFerret (talk) 19:05, 30 May 2008 (UTC)
But as we have the original source material we can see the refernce you gave its not fully reliable in claiming what was actually stated. Also the whole commitedmnet issue was resolved after the reference was made making the info old and obsolete. That you keep using an incorrent, old and obsolete reference even though you are informated of it being wrong in its cited claims, and being superceded by later official Microsoft commitment state ment says it all. You are trolling. hAl (talk) 19:17, 30 May 2008 (UTC)
It is not old , obsolete, or wrong. That is your opinion. It is reliable, it quotes the words of Brian Jones and gives its opinions of what he said. You can disagree with it all you want, but it isn't up to you to remove it just because you disagree with it. AlbinoFerret (talk) 20:33, 30 May 2008 (UTC)
Now it seems we have a quote from Claudius Ptolemy claiming that the Earth is in the center of the universe and we also have a more recent quote from Nicolaus Copernicus proving that the sun is at the center of the Solar System. However, you still argue that the geocentric model is correct because you found an ancient quote from Ptolemy. Ghettoblaster (talk) 01:14, 31 May 2008 (UTC)
That is not what happened here. Regardless, there are other issues here. HAl is IMHO complaining that what he said is being taken out of context. But the news articles quoted did not quote HAl, but Brian Jones who went farther than HAl's question. HAl also has a WP:COI problem. He should remove himself from discussion and editing of these claims. AlbinoFerret (talk) 12:06, 31 May 2008 (UTC)

Will the format last? We don't know what Microsoft's commitment will be to OOXML/OXML. We know what Microsoft's stated commitment is, and we should include Microsoft's stated aims in the article. However, there is growing concern that Microsoft's OOXML/OXML may never see widespread use, and we don't know if there will ever be a product released to the public that will be able to save documents in OOXML/OXML format. It's interesting that there are an increasing number of commentaries in major technical publications that point to this uncertain future for OOXML/OXML. For example:

My point is that we don't know if Microsoft is truly committed to OOXML or not. However, there is much scepticism. Lester 23:38, 1 June 2008 (UTC)

Danish objections

I have [twice] reverted the addition of "Denmark" to the list of countries having objected to ISO over the process followed for DIS 29500. Objections must be made by a national standards organisation (eg. Dansk Standard), to ISO [and IEC]. The letter in question was instead sent by the Open Source Leverandørforeningen (Danish Open Source Association) to Dansk Standard (Danish National Standards body).[1]. —Sladen (talk) 12:22, 2 June 2008 (UTC)

Denmark just got added back in. I've corrected (rather than removed) the description of who in Denmark is actually protesting. I realise this is trivial compared to appeals from proper national standards bodies, but it probably makes sense to keep it there for now, as it may help keep out incorrect edits. It can be removed in a couple days once the storm subsides. Trails (talk) 17:55, 2 June 2008 (UTC)
I agree with User:Sladen and removed it again. No reference has been provided for the statement. The national standards organisation Dansk Standard is not protesting. Ghettoblaster (talk) 14:34, 3 June 2008 (UTC)
So lets split hairs and instead of fixing the information about who in Denmark is protesting, as Sladen pointed out. Just remove it. Then lets hide our heads in the sand and make believe that fixed the issue. AlbinoFerret (talk) 19:12, 3 June 2008 (UTC)
I've hopefully made it pretty clear now - David Gerard (talk) 19:43, 3 June 2008 (UTC)
Actually, there are so many ODF and open source proponents protesting against the OOXML standardization that I don't really unterstand what is so special about this Danish Open Source Leverandørforeningen. Are we going to add Tom, Dick and Harry too? Formal appeals from ISO member bodies are something completely different. IMHO this is turning into a soapbox again. Ghettoblaster (talk) 20:45, 3 June 2008 (UTC)
Because the letter has notability. [30]. I don't see a problem adding anything to the article that is referenced by third party reputable sources. I don't think the Danish Open Source Leverandørforeningen is Tom, Dick and Harry. Tom, Dick and Harry would not get the media coverage. This article should not be a soapbox, but according to WP:NPOV represent "all significant views that have been published by reliable source". It should also not be a advertisement, but we all know some parts of the article read as one. AlbinoFerret (talk) 21:38, 3 June 2008 (UTC)
But not everything that has some basic notability belongs necessarily into this section/article. We have a Main article: Standardization of Office Open XML to focus on this process in detail. We do not need to mirror each and every scrap on both articles. This is totally senseless. IMHO this section should summarize the standardization and mention the most important facts. I think you're still muddling articles just as you did with that Microsoft criticism that you added to the OOXML criticism section before. This article should not be used as a vehicle for Propaganda, advocacy, or recruitment. It is certainly not turning into an advertisement just because we don't cover all aspects of the standardization of Office Open XML twice. Ghettoblaster (talk) 22:34, 3 June 2008 (UTC)
I agree that its not turning into an advertisement because we don't cover all aspects of the standardization. But looking at past versions of the article, it has read like one for a long time. AlbinoFerret (talk) 01:50, 4 June 2008 (UTC)
The Danish letter is important because Dansk Standard very likely have to respond to it and it's to the person who will be vice-chairman of ISO next year is head of Dansk Standard and current ISO vice-president, who has said he will be addressing it in Geneva[31]. This isn't just part of the usual cloud of complainants. I don't think a passing mention in the section is excessive for now; I'm still hacking away at the relevant bits of this article and the standardisation article - David Gerard (talk) 12:39, 4 June 2008 (UTC)
That is, I think important, noteworthy complaints are those that may affect the process - the four formal appeals, the Danish letter, DIN concerning the fast-track process. e.g. I don't know if the court case against BSI affects ISO per se as yet, that I personally think doesn't rate a mention in the rather fat main article at this stage - David Gerard (talk) 12:50, 4 June 2008 (UTC)
I think part of what's driving these edits is that Slashdot had an article titled | Denmark Becomes Fourth Nation To Protest OOXML, and given that many just take the title at face value, a lot of people appear to ahve been under the impression that the Danish national standards body had appealed. I just figured it would be better to have correct but inappropriately placed content as a means of stemming the factually incorrect edits. Trails (talk) 15:04, 4 June 2008 (UTC)

Appeals against other BRMs?

This has been added and removed. Does anyone have a citation of past standards that made it through a BRM and were appealed? - David Gerard (talk) 19:43, 3 June 2008 (UTC)

There are currently 2 references in the article (one in the intro, one in the body) which state that this is the first time a standard passed through the BRM has been appealed. I've seen many other similar statements in recent news coverage. Lester 22:10, 4 June 2008 (UTC)
Yeah, I'm suspecting further copies of the same statement are media echo chamber. I'm wondering about the contrary statement someone put in (that there have been other appeals) - David Gerard (talk) 10:27, 5 June 2008 (UTC)
Someone removed the exact cited text from the IEC which was: This is the first such appeal after a BRM process in ISO/IEC JTC 1, although appeals occur regularly in other technical committees. As this was a direct citation from the IEC director of communications it seems the best reference. So I restored it back in the article. hAl (talk) 08:58, 8 June 2008 (UTC)
Heh. About the best possible source ;-) - David Gerard (talk) 16:49, 8 June 2008 (UTC)
I can see why there's confusion. JTC1 is just one of many ISO committees and just one of many IEC committees - it just happens to be the only joint one. --Alvestrand (talk) 19:22, 8 June 2008 (UTC)

[This line] keeps getting deleted from the intro by user:hAl. The line says: It marks the first time that a standard that has gone through the ISO's Ballot Resolution Meeting (BRM) process has ever been appealed. The fact it went through the BRM process makes it the most major appeal to happen at the ISO. It doesn't matter that other specifications have been appealed in lower level technical committees. The line was deleted without prior discussion. There was no indication in the edit summary that the line was deleted. Deletions of referenced information should be open, and discussed here first on the discussion page. The information about the high-level ISO appeal is crucial to the story of OOXML and should be in the intro. It's unnecessary and unhelpful to edit war over it. --Lester 03:07, 9 June 2008 (UTC)

I do not understand your argument. The citation from the IEC director doe not mention lower level. Mayby you do not understand that JTC1 is just one of many dozens of ISO and IEC technical committees which are working on creating standards and that appeals occur regularly in those committees. Furthermore the info was not deleted but a poorer version of the info in a duplicated line in the header was deleted and I improved on the citation in the standardization section. Also I do not understand why you consider it crucial to the story of Office Open XML that it should be duplicated in the header. If anything about what the IEC director said is relevant for Office Open XML standardization than it is that there is little chance that the appeals will result in ISO/IEC abandoning ISO/IEC 29500. hAl (talk) 04:45, 9 June 2008 (UTC)
I think it is much more relevant that appeals occur regularly in technical committees. This is a common process and the appeals system is designed to find a solution by consensus. The fact that it is the first such appeal after a BRM process is already mentioned in the IEC quote in the standardization section. Ghettoblaster (talk) 07:45, 9 June 2008 (UTC)

MSO 2007 as reference implementation of Ecma 376

As I understand it, and have written in the article, the purpose of Ecma 376 is to fully document what MSO 2007 produces, i.e. if there's a discrepancy then Ecma 376 is incorrect. Do I have this right? I can't find a reference! - David Gerard (talk) 19:52, 3 June 2008 (UTC)

I don't think that this wording is optimal.
  • The Ecma committee's work began in December 2005.[32]
  • The Ecma General Assembly approved the Final Draft as Standard ECMA-376 in December 2006.[33]
  • Office 2007 for Windows launched on January 30, 2007.[34]
Ecma 376 came first (based on the Office Open XML draft that Microsoft submitted in 2005). Saying that Ecma 376 is merely documenting what Office 2007 produces suggests that Office 2007 came first. Microsoft was a member of the Ecma committee and was working with Ecma on this standard for about a year and hence was able to sync the Office code base with the standard that finally came out of Ecma. Ghettoblaster (talk) 20:32, 3 June 2008 (UTC)
Humm, ok. What's a sensible restatement then? - David Gerard (talk) 12:40, 4 June 2008 (UTC)
As Office Open XML was based on the XML format created during Office 12 developement which was donated from MS to Ecma I added that tot the article. hAl (talk) 09:00, 8 June 2008 (UTC)


HAl and conflict of interest editing

User HAl has been involved in editing a section of the article that he was directly involved with outside of wikipedia. He has admitted to this in the article. [35] and [36]. He is editing sections he was directly involved with on the Brian Jones blog. An admin (Scarian) has already told HAl that he has a WP:COI problem with the edits [37]. I therefore ask HAl to stop editing the sections dealing with the quotes of Brian Jones. AlbinoFerret (talk) 12:42, 8 June 2008 (UTC)

I think you're misunderstanding what a conflict of interest is; hAl went to a source to get them to make a clearer statement. I realise you're looking for reasons to discredit his work because you've been engaged in a lengthy dispute with him, but this isn't a COI policy violation. -/- Warren 14:06, 8 June 2008 (UTC)

Double and triple dating of statements

While it is important to date some references. It is not necessary to double and triple date statements. An example is this from the DIS 29500 implementations section.

So while Microsoft has committed to supporting ISO/IEC 29500 during the first half of 2008, its employee Brian Jones had not committed to conform to any specific version of the Office Open XML specification a year before according to a Techworld article from 2007

It does not read well. I have edited this to remove one or the other date. The same information is then triple placed.

According to a LXer article in 2008 based on the same cited information by Brian Jones in 2007

All the date placing is IMHO trying to insert original research WP:OR. The research is leading people to come to the conclusion that the quoted articles are outdated. To prove that a reference that states it would be necessary. I have done some editing and welcome discussion on this topic.AlbinoFerret (talk) 18:32, 8 June 2008 (UTC)

First of all, I don't see how adding the correct dates on which these articles were published does qualify as original research. These dates are very important. Without these dates, people might think that Microsoft is still not commited to OOXML, which is wrong, based on the sources mentioned on this talk page. Furthermore, I think that a whole bunch of sentences in the DIS 29500 implementations section are unessential. If "Microsoft has committed to supporting ISO/IEC 29500 during the first half of 2008", then how is the missing commitment of 2007 any relevant now? In 2007, Microsoft didn't even know if OOXML was approved by ISO in 2008. Ghettoblaster (talk) 19:26, 8 June 2008 (UTC)
Dates are important. But duplicate dates, 3 to be exact in the span of a few sentences is not necessary. One duplication of dates is 5 words away. How is a date original research? When multiple dates are used to imply that the information is out of date. A reference is needed that says that.
The commitment of Microsoft in 2008 is a commitment to use ooxml in its products. It is not a commitment to conform to the specification. It is possible to use a specification and not conform to it. The statements to use and those of not conforming do not contradict each other. AlbinoFerret (talk) 20:22, 8 June 2008 (UTC)
  1. Regarding the use of dates, you should assume WP:Good Faith.
  2. I'm not sure you can use a specification without actually conforming to it. If you don't conform to a certain specification, you're essentially not using it. You're rather using your own specification that is somewhat similar.
  3. Microsoft already stated that its OOXML Format SDK will be "100% compliant with the final ISO/IEC 29500 spec". Therefore the statement that Microsoft is not committed to conform to the specification is outdated.
Ghettoblaster (talk) 20:41, 8 June 2008 (UTC)
I agree with Ghettoblaster hAl (talk) 20:57, 8 June 2008 (UTC)
Re:Ghettoblaster
  1. I am assuming good faith. That's why I am discussing it here as the guideline suggests.
  2. Yes it is possible to use a specification and not conform to it. There are lots of specifications people have used and not conformed to everything in the specification. Do a google search for Kerberos for an example.
  3. How long have they committed to keep the implementation conforming to the specification? Do you have a link to a reference that says that Microsoft has committed to conform to the standard for xxxx amount of time? AlbinoFerret (talk) 21:01, 8 June 2008 (UTC)
  1. I was actually talking about assuming good faith while discussing on the talk page.
  2. If Microsoft does not fully conform to the Kerberos spec, then it is probably using a different (similar, proprietary) spec (that might be based on the official Kerberos spec). That is exactly what I was saying.
  3. The Open XML Format SDK roadmap currently ends in 2009 with the release of version 2.0.
Ghettoblaster (talk) 21:22, 8 June 2008 (UTC)
I am assuming good faith, it is still possible to discuss problems that I see in an article. I think it would be a good idea if you read the WP:AGF page. Not assuming good faith would be making a statement that the acts were done with malice.
No Microsoft calls it Kerberos, and does not conform to the specification by adding things to it. That hasn't happened to ooxml. But the claim in the article is that they have not committed to conforming.
A roadmap is not a statement by Microsoft that they have committed to conforming to the specification for any length of time. There is nothing in it that says that Microsoft will not take away or add things not in the specification. AlbinoFerret (talk) 21:41, 8 June 2008 (UTC)
You opinion is challenged by several editors here who find enough evidence that Micrsoft have committed to using the ISO 29500 tands in their product (more for instance than ANY company has committed to for instance ODF). Your sources only come up with a brian jones quote from 2007 that predates those commitment staments. You need to come up with some info that support that is similar to that Brian Jones quote but from a more recent date because else the referenced info you added is just not sufficient to support the point you are trying to make anymore. hAl (talk) 18:45, 10 June 2008 (UTC)

HAl has now placed information not backed up by any reference in the section.

that quotes Brian Jones, a program manager at Microsoft almost a year before Microsoft stated officialy that it would fully commit to supporting the ISO/IEC 29500 standard.

This is blatant original research.AlbinoFerret (talk) 21:04, 8 June 2008 (UTC)

Actually you put in the references yourself. They contain cited statements from Brian Jones from this blogpost. As you yourself put in citations referring to a blogpost in 2007 I can of course add the relevant information when those statments were made. That you object to that dating shows very well that you know the info you reference is old and irrelevant by now. I'd be happy to replace your references with the original blogpost they cite. However it does not support anything you added to the article. hAl (talk) 21:13, 8 June 2008 (UTC)
I placed in references that backed up the claim. You have no reference that backs up that claim. AlbinoFerret (talk) 21:16, 8 June 2008 (UTC)
A reference is not nescesary unless the info is disputed. That the cited statement in your references by Brian Jones is from 2007 is undisputed. However if you would like me to replace your third part citation of a blog post by the original blog post from 2007 I will. ~~
A blog is not a reliable source except under some specific circumstances like those attached to newspapers. A reply in a blog is not a reliable source according to WP:VER. But I am not suggesting that the date should be left out. But that 1 or 2 times in the section is enough. AlbinoFerret (talk) 22:13, 8 June 2008 (UTC)

It's a Free & Open Edit War

There's an edit war raging after some editors keep repeatedly inserting the words OOXML is "free and open" in the first sentence of the article, and other editors keep deleting it.(>>DIFF<<) I think the waring should stop, and we should find some other way to resolve the dispute. Obviously some parties believe its free & open (I assume they can find references that say as much), and others feel the format is not free & open (they should also be able to find references. Therefore, the article should include both claims, but it should attribute those claims to the sources that made them. For example "Microsoft says OOXML is a free and open format", followed by a sentences such as "but the Open Source foundation says the format is bound by legal and technical restrictions". That's just a rough example off the top of my head, just to demonstrate that both claims can be included in the intro, provided they carry decent citations. --Lester 22:17, 15 June 2008 (UTC)

Actually all Ecma standards are free and open. hAl (talk) 22:58, 15 June 2008 (UTC)
Your assertion that all Ecma standards are free and open is highly debatable, as there are a considerable number of media articles to say that OOXML is not free or open. A claim of free and openness from Ecma itself is not an independent source, unless we change the wording to say that "Ecma says that all its specifications are free and open." We need to know who else (apart from Ecma) says Ecma standards are completely free and open, attribute it to that source, and find some reliable independent references to back up that claim. Until some independent and reliable cites are provided, the claim should be deleted from the intro. --Lester 03:03, 16 June 2008 (UTC)
What Ecma standard do you have to pay for ? what standard can't you freely download an copy from their website ? What restriction has placed Ecma on use of their standards ? I would like you to provide me info of that. hAl (talk) 07:57, 16 June 2008 (UTC)
But what "free" or "open" REALLY means??? Both words have like thousand different meanings. I would deny using both of them in this article. Does "free" means free of charge or free software? Does "open" means publically available or open for participation???--Kozuch (talk) 16:42, 23 June 2008 (UTC)
Actually if you are unaware of the meaning of the words in that context you should try and use the wikilinks. That is what they are there for !!! hAl (talk) 21:11, 23 June 2008 (UTC)
OR page is not a source for me, sorry. Tagged again and please do not remove the tags untile the dispute is R-E-S-O-L-V-E-D. Thank you.--Kozuch (talk) 10:37, 24 June 2008 (UTC)
  • "Ecma International grants a non-exclusive, royalty-free license to obtain (on paper or per download), reproduce and use the information contained in its standards." [38]
  • All current Ecma Standards and Technical Reports are available, free of charge and freely copyable, as electronic files.[39]
  • "Ecma Standards and Technical Reports are made available to all interested persons or organizations, free of charge and copyright, in printed form and, as files in Acrobat ® PDF format."[40]
  • "Ecma Standards on QSIG, in common with all Ecma Standards, are open standards and can be implemented by anyone. There is no requirement to be a member of Ecma International or any other organisation in order to claim conformance to Ecma Standards."[41]
  • "Office OpenXML is an open standard for word-processing documents, presentations, and spreadsheets"[42]
  • "The Ecma-376 Office Open XML File Formats (Open XML) is another standardized XML-based file format specification suitable for office applications. It covers the features required by text, spreadsheets, charts, and graphical documents. The specification has been approved by Ecma International as an open standard."[43]
  • "ODF / Open XML - Both document formats are open standards"[44]
Ghettoblaster (talk) 10:17, 16 June 2008 (UTC)
I was hoping there would be some good non-Ecma references to substantiate the claim that "OOXML is a free and open Ecma international standard". My concern is that it is a minority viewpoint. Ecma can say what it likes about itself, but we really need some independent sources. If we are going to state the claim that "OOXML is free and open", we must prove that this is the common belief, not a minority belief. The claim that it is a common belief has not been established by the references so far provided. I exclude the Ecma internal descriptions of themselves. Out of the others, there have been 3 references provided:
  • Document #1, an RTF document titled "Enterprise Technical Reference Model – Version 4.0" provides a definition of what Massachusetts says is "open" as "data file formats that are based on an underlying open standard, developed by an open community, affirmed and maintained by a standards body and are fully documented and publicly available." Once again, the sentence's liberal use of the word "open" doesn't really define the word. The blue Wikilink in the article links us to the Wikipedia definition of "open", which is different.
  • Document #2, a PDF from the Fräunhofer Institute, in a section about ODF and OpenXML says "Both document formats are open standards". However, that is under a heading "Requirements for Document Formats", which means that openness is a requirement (not a statement of fact). Neither of those documents mentions the word "free" at all.
  • Document #3 is a German language HTML page. Translated here via Google Language Tools, I can't find anything that adds to the discussion.
I suggest that the opening sentence about OOXML being "free and open" be deleted until references have been provided that actually show this is the majority view. --Lester 01:18, 17 June 2008 (UTC)
I suggest thay are left in untill you prove these official references from governments and independant standards institutues do not represent the majority view and untill you answer the above quenstion I asked (with referenced info please): What Ecma standard do you have to pay for ? what standard can't you freely download an copy from their website ? What restriction has placed Ecma on use of their standards ? hAl (talk) 07:57, 16 June 2008 (UTC)
We can see the previous definitions of free and Open (that you provided), and we know that there is a huge controversy raging in the public domain as to whether OOXML results in vendor lock-in, that revisions are not published in a timely manner, that the MS legal exemptions still cause legal doubt, that OOXML references to past proprietary code causes technical restriction, that OOXML may not be as easily implementable by competitors and open source software etc etc. You could argue 'till the cows come home on every one of those issues, but the point I make is that out in the community, in the press, there is doubt over whether OOXML is free or open. To make this claim is a minority opinion, and the onus is on those who added the sentence to the article to prove it otherwise, using reliable and independent references. The issue has received world headlines, so you should be able to find media references to justify this point-of-view. Otherwise it must be deleted quick smart.--Lester 06:53, 17 June 2008 (UTC)
Lester, you seemingly forgot to provide any references to support your claims. Please, come back with some. Note in advance that neither Slashdot nor Groklaw are independent, verifiable or peer-reviewed sources. Thank you! 71.112.18.171 (talk) 09:59, 18 June 2008 (UTC)
A number of references have been provided that clearly state that all Ecma standards are free. Ecma should know best whether its standards are free or not. No reliable/verifiable source has been provided that says that Ecma standards are not free. If you think that Ecma standards being free is a minority belief, then you probably can present dozens of sources that say Ecma standards are not free. May I remind you that for instance ECMAScript is also a free Ecma standard that is implemented in most free and proprietary web browsers today. Nobody would argue that ECMAScript is not a free standard.
How came you do not insist on putting the "free and open" phrase in the first sentence of each and every article on ECMA standards? By the way, the thing here is not only if the OOXML is really free and open, but is it NPOV enough to state such contested things in the first sentence. How would you react if I modified that to say "OOXML is a file format developed by MS and used to stall or block any attempt to introduce ODF as a standard file format by any government body around the world" ? This would be as truthful as the statement about 'free- and openness'. And about as much antagonizing. 83.5.175.6 (talk) 10:03, 17 June 2008 (UTC)
As a matter of fact, I am adding such information to other standards related articles as well – as long as I can find reliable references that say so. Actually, I was surprised that the fact that ECMAScript is a free and open standard is not already mentioned in the article. Since you agree that all Ecma standards are free and open, I suggest that you help pointing out this relevant detail in those articles, because there seem to be editors that don't know this. And to answer your question: I doubt you can find any reliable published source that can prove your conspiracy theory. The Ecma Office Open XML specification was developed by an Ecma technical committee (TC45). Ecma has an established well-defined open standards process. Any ECMA member was open to joining the committee. ECMA membership is open and Government and academic membership is free. Ghettoblaster (talk) 10:22, 17 June 2008 (UTC)
Also, a number of independent sources say that Ecma Office Open XML is an open standard (btw. why did you drop this one: [45]?). Document #3 on your list is a professional journal published by the German VDE. The article in this journal says that Office Open XML an open standard. You can get a copy of the issue for example from the British Library: [46]. Remember that we do not publish original research and unpublished facts, arguments or speculation here. The public discussion deals with the point of view that the current ISO draft of the standard should not become an ISO standard because we already have ODF. I wonder why we aren't all using Open Document Architecture then. Ghettoblaster (talk) 08:35, 17 June 2008 (UTC)
Well, since you asked.... One might speculate that we're not all using Open Document Architecture because the world's favorite word processor vendor apparently never bothered to implement it, probably for the same reason that they've given for waiting so long to implement ISO 26300: no demand from customers large enough to threaten said vendor's dominant market position. —Fleminra (talk) 16:09, 17 June 2008 (UTC)
Ok, let's ask a different question. Why didn't all those people who now argue that we already have an ISO standard (ODF) protest when ISO standardized ODF from Sun/OASIS? It seems that prior to ODF nobody said "there can only be one" when we already had the Open Document Architecture. Nobody argues that "evil" Sun Microsystems published and standardized the proprietary document file format of StarOffice and used it "to stall or block any attempt to introduce Open Document Architecture as a standard file format by any government body around the world". People claim that OOXML should use SVG from W3C instead of DrawingML. Why does nobody argue that ODF should use CGM from ISO instead of SVG? As you pointed out, at the end it is the market that decides what standard will be used. Even Microsoft Office will support ODF if the demand from customers is large enough. :-) Ghettoblaster (talk) 17:27, 17 June 2008 (UTC)
Your first question is a good one. I'd have to assume that someone at some point raised the issue. Would be interesting to document that in Wikipedia. Maybe by then consensus was that ODA a total failure, with no implementations(?), and by moving on to ODF they were essentially taking a Mulligan. I suppose the difference between ODA→ODF and ODF→OOXML was that by the time OOXML is published, ODF will already have been somewhat successful, insofar as it has a number of implementations existing in the market. Obviously the other factor here is that the ODF process was mostly under the radar, since 9944100% (or whatever) of the market was on MS Word, with even MS gambling that ODF wouldn't take off (by choosing not to participate in its standardization). On the other hand, naturally anything that such a dominant player — especially one with MS's legal history — does will be held to higher scrutiny ("having a monopoly" vs. "abusing a monopoly"). Sun's negligible market position would not have allowed it to manipulate the market in the same way that MS could, so that's why no-one pursued the argument you've suggested. As for SVG vs. CGM, I suppose the declarative nature of SVG was a more natural fit to ODF's declarative XML, rather than the procedural (non-declarative), non-XML CGM. In any case, SVG pre-dated ODF, and already had a number of platform-independent implementations. In contrast, DrawingML seems to be defined (i.e. not merely referenced) in the OOXML spec, with no pre-existing implementations.. even now are there any implementations of it outside of OOXML implementations? —Fleminra (talk) 18:26, 17 June 2008 (UTC)
The answer is a lot easier than that: a lot of people hate Microsoft and everything they stand for, and will fight against absolutely anything the company does. OOXML's technical merits have been criticised, sure, but the simple fact of the matter is that no other standard submitted by a corporation to ISO has received as much scathing, impolite criticism for what are fundamentally fixable technical issues. That's because it's not the technical issues that really matter -- it's because the standard is the work of Microsoft. Hatred of that damned paperclip knows no bounds. To muddy the waters further, ODF is supported by some of Microsoft's fiercest competitors in the business market -- this fight has been playing out over the last two years as nothing less than the future of document file formats, so the rhetoric and emotions are going to run high. This article's history is as much a testament to that as any. Warren -talk- 08:34, 19 June 2008 (UTC)
Well, Warren, your post (above) acknowledges the contoversy that rages around the world. Some editors will be on Microsoft's side, while others on the ODF side. It should not matter, as we should aim to present both sides of this controversy in this article. A few posts ago, user:Ghettoblaster requested I find a reference that challenges the notion that OOXML is "free and open", the words that were recently added to the article. I found an article from todays news >>EFYtimes<<. It quotes Microsoft saying it is open, and it quotes others who say that OOXML does not meet the criteria of a free and open format. Because off this debate and controversy, the article must not state as fact that OOXML is free and open. --Lester 12:02, 19 June 2008 (UTC)

Conflict of interest

FYI, User:Arnieswap has obviously a Wikipedia:Conflict of interest. He seems to be the Assistant Editor of EFYtimes.com. <removed references> Ghettoblaster (talk) 07:47, 19 June 2008 (UTC)

Agreed that there is a conflict of interest in Swapnil Bhartiya's contributions, but I think we can also agree that the edits were done in good faith. Warren -talk- 08:03, 19 June 2008 (UTC)
Adding an article about yourself to Wikipedia is done good faith ???? I can't imagine that it is really. A professional ICT journalist should know better. hAl (talk) 09:08, 19 June 2008 (UTC)
The fact (who knows if it's true or not) that an editor works for a technology magazine does not prove a conflict of interest. Working for Microsoft or Sun or the ISO may be CoI, but working for a technology magazine isn't automatically CoI. Also, it does not mean that all EFYtimes citations can be deleted from the article, which just happened.--Lester 12:14, 19 June 2008 (UTC)
user:Ghettoblaster, I ask you to immediately delete those external links (above) that you use by linkage to "out" the identity of a fellow Wikipedia editor, who is probably unaware that you have done this. It is a serious violation of Wikipedia rules to out another editor. Take it down immediately. --Lester 12:22, 19 June 2008 (UTC)
Sorry, I was not aware of any such Wikipedia policy, but I'm pretty sure that the edits of User:Arnieswap qualify as Wikipedia:Conflict of interest. For now, I removed the real name and the deep links from above. However, one can still verify my findings using a search engine. Thanks. Ghettoblaster (talk) 12:42, 19 June 2008 (UTC)
Actually this journalist apparently edits in text from his own articles in to wikipedia including references to his own articles. In fact he even created an article about himself on wikipedia. How much more conflict of interest can you have. Someone should go after this guys edits and remove all wikipedia edits he made that refer to his own articles. hAl (talk) 13:16, 19 June 2008 (UTC)
Update: I added a notability tag to the editor's article. I'm not sure whether any random editor who does some interviews needs to have his own biography on Wikipedia, let alone writing it himself. Ghettoblaster (talk) 13:34, 19 June 2008 (UTC)
It still gives you no right to post another editor's name here, as that editor does not post here with a real name. I ask you both again to delete the links from the above comments, in addition to the person's name.--Lester 14:33, 19 June 2008 (UTC)
Done. Ghettoblaster (talk) 17:15, 19 June 2008 (UTC)
It's sad to see the particular editor's place of work still listed in the first post, and real name in the second post. I suggest everyone reads Wikipedia:OUTING#Posting_of_personal_information and adheres to that. --Lester 04:26, 20 June 2008 (UTC)
Too bad people don't get as passionate about removing the bias in this article as they do over the posting of an editor's name. 24.71.168.65 (talk) 18:43, 21 June 2008 (UTC)

I don't think a google search on the user's handle is a big deal. WP:OUTING is a bit of an over reaction, mostly caused by cases of stalking and intentional harassment from the past. -- Ned Scott 11:02, 25 June 2008 (UTC)

I came here from the ANI thread and I basically agree with Ned in this case. I actually came here with the intention of deleting the edit in question from the edit history but having looked into this issue further I don't really see any WP:OUTING violation and nothing that warrants deletion of any material. We're talking about a guy who is voluntarily using for his account name a name that is very closely associated with him, who came here to write his own biography, post his own photos of himself, add links to his workplace and then add himself into other articles. I think we're on COI territory rather than OUTING. Sarah 02:29, 27 June 2008 (UTC)

Article POV

I added the POV tag, because the full controversy of the OOXML format has been deleted from the article, and instead, positive language has been inserted to replace it. An example is that controversy from the introduction has been deleted, and language such as "free and open" has replaced it. The article needs a thorough rewrite, so that both sides of the controversy are depicted. I also note, that in the past, Microsoft has offered people money to edit this article in its favor, so its an article that we should keep a vigilant watch to ensure it doesn't happen again. --Lester

Lester, you have not answered any requests for references on this talk page. Please, do not edit the article until you find some good sources supporting your claims.71.112.18.171 (talk) 06:50, 24 June 2008 (UTC)
I'm not aware of any content in this article being deleted for no good reason. I think you're confusing the issue here. As far as I can tell, only misplaced, inappropriate and unreferenced content has been removed from this article - according to Wikipedia guidelines. IMHO, we should not censor what you call "positive" content if it is properly referenced and placed in the appropriate sections and conforms to Wikipedia guidelines. I'm not aware of any public controversy of Ecma International standards being not free and open and no references that support this claim have been provided. Furthermore, I hope the intention of your last sentence was not to suggest that certain editors who don't share your point of view might be on the payroll of Microsoft. Ghettoblaster (talk) 11:45, 24 June 2008 (UTC)
This article is really a testament to the limitations of Wikipedia. The dispute over whether or not OOXML is "free and open" is tiresome in the extreme. Both of these words are so wide as to be nearly meaningless when used of a technical specification. Anybody who thinks they are inappropriate should systematically be going through Wikipedia removing this claim of all standards, including ODF. Unfortunately we have got into the position where making such edits (for OOXML or ODF) are characterised politically. Since both ODF and OOXML are broadly identical in their "freeness" and "openness" (if just those words are used; details could be argued either way) then the most reasonable compromise would seem to be to use identical wording for both of them. Personally I would prefer to see them both described merely as "standards" and then simply reference the host standards bodies and/or side documents to give accurate information about the degree of openness of participation, availability, and terms of use for these specs. Alexbrn (talk) 16:35, 24 June 2008 (UTC)
I agree that we should use identical wording for both articles. However, your suggestion of "systematically […] going through Wikipedia removing this claim of all standards, including ODF" is IMHO not an option. As the references show, ODF and a large number of other standards (including Ecma International standards) are characterized as "free and open" file format standards in the media. Therefore I think that using these words in these articles is appropriate. Wikipedia should reflect common usage of these terms when describing standards. Instead of removing these words from all articles we should improve the "free and open" articles that this article links to by adding proper sources to the definitions. Ghettoblaster (talk) 20:02, 24 June 2008 (UTC)
I do not see any agreement on your edit in this section and as such I suggest you remove it again. Also your personal attack on other editors like me and Ghettoblaster suggesting they are being payed by Microsoft is offensive and insulting. I have not seen you add anything usefull to the article about the format itself but I have only seen edits from you that are about discrediting the Office Open XML format or what are as described by Alexbrn as political edits. It surely is no coincedence that you are complaining about the properly sourced information in the header of the Office Open XML article and leave alone the OpenDocument article where the wording is virtually identical but not properly sourced in any way. Truly contributing users like me and Ghettoblaster who have also add real information about the format to this article will generally remove the stuff you edit in because none of your edits on Office Open XML have been NPOV. If you are interested in contributing NPOV information about Office Open XML you will find that it will stay in the article a lot longer. hAl (talk) 06:18, 25 June 2008 (UTC)

Unreliable Sources

The subject matter, 'OOXML', is highly controversial. At the heart of the controversy are: Microsoft, the ISO, the IEC, and Ecma. References and citations from these organizations embroiled in the dispute are not reliable sources, as they are reporting on or describing themselves. The article is riddled with references from the involved parties of the dispute, so such references should be removed from the article. Instead, we should replace them with references from uninvolved parties, especially news media and magazines for all facts.--Lester 06:43, 25 June 2008 (UTC)

But Microsoft are on record as claiming IBM is responsible for the controversy: so this is clearly something that depends on point-of-view. Better to stick to facts. Alexbrn (talk) 07:17, 25 June 2008 (UTC)
In that case, we say "Microsoft claims that... IBM is responsible" etc etc. Any claims by Microsoft, the ISO, Ecma, or parties involved in the controversy must be attributed to the organisation that made that claim. We really should avoid using comments from those organisations as facts, or as references. I hereby give notice to remove contentious references from organisations involved in the dispute. --Lester 07:30, 25 June 2008 (UTC)
That makes no sense. Any person or group who has made any statement, been quoted by the press, or written any words has, by definition, been "involved in the dispute" - so by your logic the page must be blank. Or are you saying it's only people who know nothing of the standard and its treatment who can comment (that certainly has been the fashion, I admit!). Even the existence of a "controversy" is a point-of-view. Many people in the standards community, for example, see much of the so-called controversy as artificially whipped-up hysteria. It is inappropriate to turn up here and "give notice" that you are going to remove views which according to your own personal and selective criteria are from too "controversial" a source. If you think something is wrong or misleading, raise it here ... Alexbrn (talk) 08:10, 25 June 2008 (UTC)
Please keep the references if they show what the organizations actually said. Any analysis of what those statements "really" mean should be referenced to independent sources - trying to interpret them here would be WP:OR. --Alvestrand (talk) 08:48, 25 June 2008 (UTC)

Adding peacock tag to WP:POV edit

Repeatly Kozuch has added without consensus added peacock tag to the article suggesting the words free and open (representing free and op files formats) are insufficiently clear. However the word are wikilinks which explain the meaning fine and the wikilinks are actually identical to the wording that is used in the heading of the OpenDocument article. It show the repeated WP:POV style of edits by Kozuch who in all of his edits tries to discredit the Office Open XML format and has no interest in contributing any usefull information about the format to the information in this article. He even went as far as to explain his editon Office Open XML by stating that the wiki article about free file format and open format are inproperly sourced. Any normal action would be to try and improve those two articles by asking for citations but not by adding the peacock template to an article that uses thoise wikilinks. However Kozuch does not seem to have improving wikipedia on his mind but only to make negative edits on Office Open XML. Needless to say I have removed the template untill there is consensus about the tag being there as the wikilinks should satisfy any need about information on the wording and stating that they are not has implacation for a lot of other articles that use that wording as well. If such consensus is reached I will not only readd it back to this article but also add the peacock tag to other articles about free and open formats that use the similar terminology to describe the format. hAl (talk) 06:01, 25 June 2008 (UTC)

Thanx for promoting me!--Kozuch (talk) 08:57, 25 June 2008 (UTC)

RfC: Is OOXML a free and open format?

Is OOXML a free and open format?

Statement by user:Lester

It's a worldwide controversy and dispute over whether Microsoft's OOXML is free or open. Organisations involved on one side of the dispute (eg Microsoft, the ISO, the IEC, and Ecma) may say it is a free and open format. However, there are many other organisations, such as open-source computer groups and the standards bodies of India, South Africa, Venezuela (among others) who say the format is not free or open. Read about the controversy >>here<<. The answer to all this is to include both sides of the debate. If we say it is "free & open" we must attribute that claim to whoever made it. If we say it is not "free & open" we must also attribute that claim. On the other hand, because it is so contentious, I think it's better to leave out the words "free & open" altogether. --Lester 09:59, 25 June 2008 (UTC)

It is interesting that you cite a reference that does not even use either the words free or open as support for stating that there is controversy on the format being free and open. hAl (talk) 15:03, 25 June 2008 (UTC)
Somehow I fail to comprehend how the fact that national standards bodies filed appeals against the ISO standardization process of DIS 29500 has any relevance to the fact that Ecma-376 is a free and open standard. Where is the quote in which South Africa, Brazil, India and Venezuela claim that Ecma-376 is not a free and open document file format standard? Ghettoblaster (talk) 15:32, 25 June 2008 (UTC)
It is deeply concerning that references from technology publications which question whether OOXML is "open" have been deleted from the article (>diff<). Here's another alternate reference: MacLife magazine which has a review of OOXML. Quote: "The new OOXML format has met with fierce opposition from open standards advocates who say it’s too bloated, complex, and application-dependent for competing companies to implement (which makes it “open” in name only)". Yes, you can find quotes and references either way. It's a controversy and a dispute that engulfs the IT community, and in the face of such controversy, Wikipedia should not be stating as fact that it is "free & open". We should just remove that text, or else attribute it to whoever made the claim.--Lester 23:03, 25 June 2008 (UTC)
Actually that reference did not support the text in the article which is what citation are used for. Therefore I removed it. Also you suggest thing about that opinion column article in the efy times that is not in it. It does not even mention the word open nor does it question that. And lastly I find it very strange that by readding that particular article just for the reason of adding the article you are supporting the user who actually wrote that article and added that as a reference under his own account which was totally against wiki policy. hAl (talk) 05:44, 26 June 2008 (UTC)
You are only partially correct about the EFY times article. It does not support the text for which it quoted, indeed. But it has a paragraph titled "Yet, is it an open standard?". So you are factually incorrect in what you claim. About the support of the author, I don't know, you may be right. --Blaisorblade (talk) 01:46, 17 July 2008 (UTC)
Quote from PC World: "Even if the votes were legitimately won , which I doubt , OOXML is not an open standard because it isn't fully implemented on competing platforms, and its future shape is subject purely to Microsoft's control". With so many news reports that question Microsoft's claim that it's format is free and open, the contested text should not be stated as fact in Wikipedia. --Lester 22:46, 28 June 2008 (UTC)
It is interesting that you are citing Vinje from ECIS who is a payed EU lobbyist by Microsoft competitors. But also incorrect. Openness is not determined by on how many platforms a standard format is implemented yet. And it is also not correct factually as for instance on Mac OS X Office 2008 is a much more full implementation that exists than there is any full implementation of ODF on any platforms. hAl (talk) 06:53, 29 June 2008 (UTC)
About "It is interesting": please be sure to assume good faith. That article quotes a paid lobbist? That's fault of a poor journalist. There are better sources around, including independent open-source developers (which includes ones who work for free, and thus cannot be accused of lobbying).
Openness is not strictly about the number of platforms, but about the variety of implementations. The lack of any implementation on Linux, however, is a point. Also, how can the fact that the only existing implementations are from Microsoft, and that the spec is not complete because of the support for arbitrary extension (see http://www.noooxml.org/binaryspace), be compatible with openness? See http://www.noooxml.org/what-is-an-open-standard.--Blaisorblade (talk) 01:46, 17 July 2008 (UTC)
I ask everyone to look at this edit, where the words "free and open" are inserted as fact. If you look at the yellow section (the section that was deleted) you'll see that the counterpoint (where critics allege it is not an open format) has been deleted, and numerous references which state it is not an open format have also been deleted. That edit sums up the 2 sides to this whole argument. I also ask everyone to search Google News. You will see the articles on OOXML are full of controversy, that has been deleted from this Wikipedia article. --Lester 21:05, 30 June 2008 (UTC)
I'd suggest you to:
a) still try to assume good faith on the other side;
b) add a link to http://www.noooxml.org/ (I can't find any at a look, and this is ridiculous) ?
c) readd those reference in the criticism section, where they will be undisputed? About the edit you quote in the introduction section (this edit), while my POV is that OOXML is not open, and it may not be free (see section "Magical healing" of http://www.noooxml.org/what-is-an-open-standard), the edit summary of the other user appears reasonable: "It is ridiculous to suggest the named institutions that support that Office Open XML is free and open are micrsoft supporters.". IMHO, it's not totally ridiculous, but to get a NPOV article (we must obey NPOV too) you can't write "Microsoft supporters claim"; unfortunately, there are different point of view, and Wikipedia must represent them all, neutrally. "Establishing the truth" is something which has to be done in real life, not here. --Blaisorblade (talk) 01:46, 17 July 2008 (UTC)
Another reference to add to the list which says Microsoft's format is not "open".--03:59, 3 July 2008 (UTC)
The noooxml site has been discusses extensivly before and has been added removed numerous times and an wikipedia admin has finally had to intervene to remove the link from the article. Wikipedia articles are not ment as a platform for protesting campaigns. hAl (talk) 05:50, 18 July 2008 (UTC)
Ok, I found some discussion of the issue on Talk:Office_Open_XML/Archive_4 (even in archive 3, but more is in Archive 4), though I can't find out who's the admin you're talking about. And I can see reasonable motivations for excluding it. However, one of the motivation is that criticism was already represented by better sources, but I find some criticism missing. Since all reasonably important POV should be present in the article, don't you think that the criticism on the standardization process itself, and on technical influences, that were mentioned also by UE commissioner, "the EU competition commissioner, Neelie Kroes"? (See [47], which I already mentioned in my other comment).
In my humble opinion, you, hAl, and Ghettoblaster, are behaving like when dealing with Open Source zealots. I often argue against such zealots myself, even if I support Open Source. You should try to seek consensus.
From WP:NPOV: "As the name suggests, the neutral point of view is a point of view, not the absence or elimination of viewpoints." It goes on with saying that the existing debates must be described and represented, but no viewpoint must be assumed. WP:NPOV goes as far as paradoxically saying "That stealing is wrong is a value or opinion.".
So, the phenomenon of opposition to OOXML should be mentioned. It would have been fair to say that official standard bodies support OOXML and unofficial (and lobbying) sources claim the opposite - that was correct until when Neelie Kroes spoke, and this fact must be included in the discussion. For instance, the paragraph on Licensing seems to correctly represent various opinions and be well-balanced; so the thesis that bad-faith POV pushing is happening cannot be upheld.
I'm trying to seek consensus with you, I hope you'll do the same, and I'd suggest that you try to include a fair discussion of these facts in the article.
--Blaisorblade (talk) 13:56, 18 July 2008 (UTC)
The opposition to the Office Open XML standardization for instance is mentioned in the relevant article Standardization of Office Open XML. hAl (talk) 08:41, 19 July 2008 (UTC)
Thanks for the answer. That's true, but it's more than a mention - is relevant also for the "Standardization" section, and it should be mentioned, shouldn't it? Since that article isn't under dispute, and seems to represent well all viewpoints, it can be useful to improve this article (even if it doesn't help for the specific question). --Blaisorblade (talk) 19:37, 20 July 2008 (UTC)
Instead of just saying the absolute, and (from this discussion) "free and open format", why not just say "Office Open XML is a document format which is an Ecma standard (give number) and disputed ISO standard (give link to page about ISO ratification controversy)"? Since "free and open" has a certain meaning in the context of software (the whole FSF/'free software' thing), it might be better to avoid that term (both due to this controversy and to avoid confusing readers) and simply state the fact that it has been ratified by the ECMA standards organisation and is currently within the ISO ratification process. Cynical (talk) 23:41, 21 July 2008 (UTC)
You say that "free and open" has a certain meaning in the context of software. The same is true for file formats, therefore we have articles about free and open formats. I see no reason why we should remove this properly referenced fact. Ghettoblaster (talk) 21:36, 22 July 2008 (UTC)
Because there are a greater number of reliable references which disupte the claim. Those references cannot be discounted. The claim about "free and open" is controversial, it is contested, it is going against the general weight of media coverage, and so must be removed.--Lester 21:53, 22 July 2008 (UTC)
All you seem to come up with is pure assertion, pure denial. Ghettoblaster (talk) 22:10, 22 July 2008 (UTC)

Statement by user:Ghettoblaster

Once again, I add the list of verifiable sources that say that Ecma International standards – including Ecma-376 Office Open XML – are free and open standards:

  • "Ecma International grants a non-exclusive, royalty-free license to obtain (on paper or per download), reproduce and use the information contained in its standards." [48]
  • All current Ecma Standards and Technical Reports are available, free of charge and freely copyable, as electronic files.[49]
  • "Ecma Standards and Technical Reports are made available to all interested persons or organizations, free of charge and copyright, in printed form and, as files in Acrobat ® PDF format."[50]
  • "Ecma Standards on QSIG, in common with all Ecma Standards, are open standards and can be implemented by anyone. There is no requirement to be a member of Ecma International or any other organisation in order to claim conformance to Ecma Standards."[51]
  • "Office OpenXML is an open standard for word-processing documents, presentations, and spreadsheets"[52]
  • "The Ecma-376 Office Open XML File Formats (Open XML) is another standardized XML-based file format specification suitable for office applications. It covers the features required by text, spreadsheets, charts, and graphical documents. The specification has been approved by Ecma International as an open standard."[53]
  • "ODF / Open XML - Both document formats are open standards"[54]

Ghettoblaster (talk) 11:06, 25 June 2008 (UTC)

The first three items are merely statements from Ecma saying that you can download the specification for free. The fourth specification claims that it can be implemented by anyone, even if that does not address patent problems, so it is relevant - but it's indirect, as it's about QSIG (a different protocol). Anyway, the other references are valid, it's just they are disputed by other sources, as I stated elsewhere. I'd remove the first three references, if you agree. And I'll surely state that the openness and freedom of the standard is disputed. --Blaisorblade (talk) 23:16, 17 July 2008 (UTC)

Statement by user:hAl

I concurr with user:Ghettoblaster that the Office open XML format is a free file format and open format. Office Open XML is an Ecma International standard since december 2006. Ecma standards are international standards that can be used by anyone. All Ecma standards can be freely downloaded and copied without copyrights licensing. This means that standard is availalbe completly free of charge. In addition to the free copyrights Microsoft has also pledged free use of their possibly patented technoly if required to implement Office open XML. This patent plegde in the Microsoft Open Specification Promise from 2006 is also near identical to IBM's Interoperability Specifications Pledge made in 2007 for another free and open format namely Opendocument. So anyone can freely use the standard specifications and freely implement Office open XML even if patented MS technology would be possibly involved if that technology is required for implementation of Office Open XML. With the specificication being availibale fro man international standard organisation for free and the technolgy licensed for free to anyone for implementing the format it is fully free and open. hAl (talk) 15:21, 25 June 2008 (UTC)


Those sources are mostly from Ecma. However, they are not ultimate sources. Microsoft is performing lobbying activity even at ISO, so Ecma is not a third-party source. (The fact that ECMA approved the standard without changes, while ISO modified it to improve it, hints that ISO is more reputable). http://www.noooxml.org/ explains various issues:

Btw, please be more respectful of policies: removing [citation needed] without adding a citation is never good behaviour. http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Office_Open_XML&diff=224849831&oldid=224848590

Blaisorblade (talk) 01:46, 17 July 2008 (UTC)

Statement by user:Blaisorblade

We (including me) are discussing the wrong question. I think everyone would agree with saying "Some sources think OOXML is neither free nor open", but some would add "but they are wrong". Now, judging who's wrong and who's correct is simply not our task, per WP:NPOV; so we should just describe the discussion; saying that lobbyists of both side are involved is ok. Can we all agree on this, possibly correcting minor points? --Blaisorblade (talk) 19:43, 20 July 2008 (UTC)

You could argue that, but reference provider by Ghettoblaster standardsorganizations like ISO, DIN or the fauenhofer institute clearly outweight any provided by opponents that generaly are based on very biased anti ooxml or anti Microsoft related sources. That the standard is free is also fairly easy to notice as you can download it for free without restrictions. Also we can easily see that the standard is already implemented freely by opensource aplications and actually the 1st application to release a (very limited) implementation of the format was an open source application (namely Gnumeric). So actually the standard is allready proven to be free an open in the real world and the discusion is merely turned into some kind of an anti ooxml campaigners discussion now. hAl (talk) 22:21, 20 July 2008 (UTC)
Free standard doesn't mean "you can download it for free", but "you can implement it for free", and the article already says it's disputed. Also, there are open source implementations of the MP3 codec, which is patented. As already said, different viewpoints must be represented on Wikipedia. Even if we agreed that only anti-Microsoft lobbyists oppose OOXML, that would deserve mention. Additionally, you say the othe viewpoint comes from sources which are very biased against OOXML. Well, that's a tautology. If somebody opposes OOXML he'll be against it. Anyway, I'm still on my original claim. We are again discussing whether OOXML is free. As you can see this discussion could go on forever, so we can't simply show any single position in the article, we must present both ones. --Blaisorblade (talk) 12:01, 24 July 2008 (UTC)
You are incorrect. A free standard is actually a standard you can download for free or obtain a copy from for free. A standard is no more than some document with some specification that is copyrighted by a standards organization. No more that that. And of course you could not charge copyrights on implementations of such a standards document even if you wanted to unless they were literal copies of significant parts of the standards document. hAl
No, Blaisorblade is correct. See for example Free software. Free must not be understood as "at no cost", but "free as in freedom". A standard which is free is a standard that you can freely implement. So that a standard document is free of charge does not mean that it is free. Richard Stallman, who can be considered as one of the major authors and proponents of the free software concept always explain that the term free must be considered as in freedom. This concept originated in software and was later extended to documents (see Free Culture movement and Creative Commons). So using the term free for a standard and meaning by that that it can be available free of charge is misleading to say the least. Hervegirod (talk) 20:25, 24 July 2008 (UTC)
Do you have any reference for your claim that the word "free" in the term free file formats must always be understood as "free as in freedom"? Since when is Richard Stallman in charge of defining the universal meaning of english words? I don't think any of this is misleading. There is a wikilink to the article free file formats. If you know any publication in which we can find Richard Stallman's definition of the meaning of "free file formats" please add it as a reference to that article. Ghettoblaster (talk) 21:47, 24 July 2008 (UTC)
Re:HervegirodI also agree that the interpretation of Free in Free and open when dealing with software should be free as in freedom. This is spelled out in the wikipedia article Free_and_open_source_software. The inclusion of open in the term implies that it is not just at 0 cost. AlbinoFerret (talk) 22:07, 24 July 2008 (UTC)
This is misleading. If you absolutely want to use the term free, use something like "available free of charge". This is used in numerous other articles and it exactly and clearly mean what hAl want to say. This of course leaves us with two problems: it seems there is no consensus here on if OOXML is a free and open file format or not. And it also seems that there is no consensus on the meaning of free and open for a file format. I suspect that the more general lack on consensus seemingly seen on sources on this is due to various definitions for the term free and open by these various sources, don't you think ? Hervegirod (talk) 23:12, 24 July 2008 (UTC)


Free and open software or free software is something totally different to a free standard. That is about software implementations. Not about free and open standards. A big difference is that in using a standard in an implementation you are not copying the specifications but creating soething based on that specifcations whereas in reusing free software you are copying the exact code. When reusing software/code you are always directly reusing protected intellectual property. When implementing a standard you are not making an exact copy but an interpretation based upon the standard specs and therefore not infringing the intellectual property of the standard itself. In this case of Office Open XML the standard is free because the intellectual property on the standard format specification which is the copyrights are fully free an unrestricted and you can make unlimied copies of that specification. If a standard is not free (for instance the ISO country code tabel) you have to pay for the standard and can not freely copy the standard because ISO hold the copyrights. However even if you have a single copy of the standard you can make unlimited software implementations based on that standard. ISO cannot ask license fees for any implementations because the copyrights does not extent to implementations. If you however have acquired a piece of software/code then you require licensing for all implementations you reuse (copy) the code into. hAl (talk) 06:26, 25 July 2008 (UTC)
hmm, I don't think you're right when saying When implementing a standard you are not making an exact copy but an interpretation based upon the standard specs and therefore not infringing the intellectual property of the standard itself. You can very much infringe a patent without reusing one line of code. The whole Software patent problem is not about reusing code, but mainly reusing the concept, which is exactly what you have in a standard. For a lot of time, you could not propose commercial implementations of the GIF file format, not because by doing that you would have reuse code that was copyrighted and/or not closed-source, but just because the file format itself (the spec) was patented by Compuserve. And this is just one of numerous other examples on patented file formats. Microsoft released their Microsoft Open Specification Promise just because of this problem. Please note that it also applies to OOXML, but apparently to the ECMA version only for the moment (new versions of the same specs do not automatically apply to the promise). Hervegirod (talk) 13:42, 26 July 2008 (UTC)
Standard organizations do not hold patents themselves. Standards are not patented technology. So patents are always third party intellectual property. It is possible for a standard to describe elements that are part of patented technology or can only beimplemneted using such technology however for a license to use that technology you need to be at the third party that holds the patent. In case of Office open XML which is an Ecma standard all companies in Ecma that participated or voted to accept the format as a standard are obliged to license their patent in a reasonable and non-discriminatory way. For example for Office open XML Microsoft has done that using the Open Specification Promise which grant the patentrights to technology you require to implement Office open XML for any conforming (partial) implementation of Office Open XML. So patents are not part of a standard but are possible 3rd intellectual party rights that can be relevant for a standard. It is common for participating organisations in standardization to RAND license their technolgy for use in such a standard. This is what if often regarded as a nescesary step for making a standard an open standard. However 3rd party intellectual property for patented technologies can still exist outside the scope of the partiicpating orgnization in the standardization proces. So you can never be guaranteed that a standard does not still hold patented technologies. hAl (talk) 09:02, 30 July 2008 (UTC)