Talk:Standards organization

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No criticism or discussion about the ethics of a poll tax to read the law? This is a fine example of rent seeking and it's resultant drag on the economy. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:56, 2 January 2014 (UTC)

Needs Dumbing Down[edit]

POR PARTE DE QUIEN? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Dingo591 (talkcontribs) 05:59, 6 April 2014 (UTC)

I know what standards bodies are, like everyone else contributing to this article I imagine, but I really think it should be dumbed down a little to allow for a lay audience to better grasp the concept (the ultimate aim of an encyclopedia, surely). I am certain that a sizeable percentage of people will read this without having the faintest idea of what "standards" actually are and how they affect our every day lives. To give an example of what I mean, this is the "suitable for a lay audience" text used by CEN on their website:

"Standards help to make life easier for consumers all over the world. Examples of standards are everywhere. However, most of us do not recognize them. The A4 paper sheet format is a standard, playpens for children need to conform to a standard, and standards can be made for a test method or production process.

What would happen if we did not have all these standards? A sheet of paper would no longer fit into an envelope; a credit card would not fit into a wallet. Trains would have difficulty traveling across borders…the list goes on.

Every aspect of society is reflected in the drafting of a new standard. Therefore, experts representing industry, consumers and other interests, like the environment or small and medium sized enterprises, sit around the table to discuss a new standard. Standards are decided upon by consensus to take into consideration all interests.

Standards can achieve what is difficult for marketing experts and business consultants: they increase consumer trust in the safety of a product and enable cheaper production. Blankfrackis (talk) 17:09, 25 September 2008 (UTC)

The article on standards could be a place for this, although it reads well now. Rlsheehan (talk) 13:48, 26 September 2008 (UTC)
The article about standards is a better place to talk about what a standard is than this article. There is already a link to that article in the opening sentence of this article. -Pawnbroker (talk) 05:41, 29 September 2008 (UTC)

Regional organizations[edit]

I suggest changing the heading for "Continental and transnational standards organizations" to "Regional organization" since it would cover all organizations that are neither international nor national. Any objections, opinions? April 26, 2006

Massive Deletes[edit]

Massive deletes without explanations is not very conducive to good editing. Please discuss major changes here before implementing. At least explain... Also- when making major changes - please sign in so we can ask you about them! Alex Jackl 02:16, 19 March 2007 (UTC)

Professional organizations[edit]

I think all the numerous professional organizations, interested primarily in one specific field of endeavor, should be split out into a separate listing. Gene Nygaard 23:35, 26 October 2007 (UTC)


how about creating a navigation-template for some/all orgs? I was thinking about a template for the web related consortiums, but after seeing this list (and the lit in th cat) i... will somebody help? mabdul 0=* 00:56, 2 February 2009 (UTC)

Distinction between official standardisation organisation and others[edit]

The article does not seem to make a clear distinction between official standardisation organisation and other organisations that produce "standards". For example, in Europe, CEN, CENELEC and ETSI are official standardisation organisations, and the EU sometimes gives them mandates to produce standards (like the current Mandate M/376 on accessibility of ICT in public procuremernt). ISO, IEC and ITU are official international standardisation organisations. CEN, CENELEC, ETSI, ISO etc are listed without distinction in the lists of organisations, although the distinction is important because there are governments whose legislation can only reference official standards, not those by other organisations such as W3C. --ChristopheS (talk) 13:42, 21 April 2009 (UTC)

The article does not make a distiction because a universal distiction does not exist. For example, the Society of Automotive Engineers publishes several standards for the automotive industry. An SAE standard might be mandatory for use with a government owned vehicle but the standard is not formally approved by any particular government. That does not make SAE standards better or worse than an official CEN standard. Many standards are voluntary for people to use or not to use. One govermnent's criteria for approval will not be another's. Which government do you want to use? Which governments should the article ignore? Rlsheehan (talk) 01:59, 22 April 2009 (UTC)

Hi, My point was not about a distinction between standards (or at least not directly) or about whether governments approve standards, but about a disctinction between standardisation organisations. So I wasn't claiming that some standards are "better" than others. All standards are voluntary, but the standards from some standardisation organisations are suitable for references in law (for example those by CEN, CENELEC and ETSI in the EU) while the standards from other organisations are not, e.g. those from the World Wide Web Consortium. For example, the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0 (WCAG 1.0) are a W3C recommendation, and I know of no country with legislation related to web accessibility that references (WCAG 1.0). Germany translated the specification and changed it a little bit and integrated the resulting text in legislation. Spain created standard UNE 139803:2004 based on WCAG 1.0 instead of recognising WCAG 1.0 as an official standard. So it's not simply a matter of one standard being "better" than another standard, but of recognition by a national or international official standards body.
In this sense, ISO, IEC, ITU, CEN, CENELEC and ETSI are official international standards bodies (of course, the three last ones only in Europe), whereas IEEE, W3C, IETF, Ecma International and OASIS are not. Even though different governments use different criteria, the distinction is worth mentioning. --ChristopheS (talk) 17:07, 22 April 2009 (UTC)

Maybe we should change the name to Standards Writing Organisation--Achim Hering (talk) 17:41, 19 August 2013 (UTC)

A topic of ....[edit]

WHO standards body is added based on the following info:

-- (talk) 10:26, 29 May 2009 (UTC)

and this

-- (talk) 10:38, 29 May 2009 (UTC)

I'm very confused with the infrastructures of International Standards Bodies.....[edit]

see my searh in the following... -- (talk) 11:25, 29 May 2009 (UTC)

and the ones at -- (talk) 11:48, 29 May 2009 (UTC)

plus the one of Codex Alexandrinus -- (talk) 12:00, 29 May 2009 (UTC)

Shouldn't we make the list as a tabulated one to see each governming body ...??? Take a look at the example of List of plants used as medicine -- (talk) 12:26, 29 May 2009 (UTC)

Standards distribution (sales)[edit]

The section "Standards distribution" says that: "Giving standards away free of charge would eliminate the significant source of funding for standards developers." User Alvestrand says that this statement needs references. Possibly, the share of revenue through sales is different for NSB on the one hand and for regional & international organisations on the other. I'll start listing some figures below:

--ChristopheS (talk) 09:58, 1 October 2009 (UTC)

Thanks for the specific figures - one important thing to keep in mind is the distinction between standards developers and standards maintenance agencies; in all the ones I'm familiar with, the standards are developed by area experts who are usually volunteering their time (or rather, are paid by their employer) for the work, and their employers will in addition pay fees in order to be allowed to contribute; the agencies serve as secretariats, paper managers and standards sales organizations. Sometimes (as in the case of DIN), sales of standards can be significant. But the trend is not in that direction; the ITU-T has gone to "free standards", ISO has its list of freely available standards that is only growing longer, and of course the IETF never tried to exploit that revenue source. --Alvestrand (talk) 11:09, 1 October 2009 (UTC)
One note about financial statements is that they need to be read carefully; "revenue" in BSI's 2007 financials is not a good indication of "sales of standards"; further down it says:

Segmental Review
Note 5 to the Group financial statements analyses the performance of the Group by its principle segments. Within this analysis BSI British Standards delivered sales growth and significant improvements in operational delivery with revenue of £43.9 million (2006: £42.9 million) and a contribution of £9.4 million (2006: £7.6 million).
The BSI Management Systems revenue of £113.3 million (2006: £105.4 million) and contribution of £11.7 million (2006: £10.0 million) represents a very successful year with continued improvements in operational effectiveness and customer satisfaction.
The BSI Product Services revenue of £21.8 million (2006: £20.1 million) and contribution of £0.5 million (2006: £0.4 million) comes on the back of significant progress in streamlining its core business processes and growing its Healthcare and Kitemark® Services businesses whilst strengthening its international profile.

It's likely that sales of standards belong in the "BSI British Standards" segment, and that membership fees are also reported there; without a breakdown, it's impossible to tell how important sales of standards are to the organization. They may be important; I'm just saying it's hard to tell. --Alvestrand (talk) 11:20, 1 October 2009 (UTC)


The article currently has some lists of organizations. These should be moved to the List of technical standard organisations. Rlsheehan (talk) 15:47, 23 December 2009 (UTC)

Moved Rlsheehan (talk) 16:32, 30 December 2009 (UTC)

Free access for article citation/reference purposes?[edit]

If the standards are all locked away within a payment system that only a manufacturer would have the deep pockets to afford purchasing, how is a free encyclopedia supposed to be able to reference these same standards if editors don't have the funds to each buy a copy of the standards for themselves?

If citations in an article are created that link to standards as a source, how is someone reading the list of references supposed to be able to access the standard for more information?

DMahalko (talk) 22:13, 26 December 2009 (UTC)

Many written standards are protected by copywrite and are available from the publisher. A technical library at a university would have copies available to be viewed by the public. Also, a large library in a major city might have them on hand. A small library might be able to "borrow" from a larger library by an interlibrary loan. This situation is true for many references and citations in WK articles - not just "standards". A free encyclopedia must still honor the laws of copywrite. Rlsheehan (talk) 00:27, 27 December 2009 (UTC)
For me as a technical hobbyist and an outsider to the industrial processes I am exploring, discovering how all this backstratching and bribing for simple access to information works, is like working out the details of how the Freemasons have run things for centuries (joke).
The only excuse these organizations have had in the past (before 1990 or so) for charging fees for access was that all the communications processes had to be done by hand, and they need to be able to pay people to operate typewriters and printing presses and do document distribution, etc etc, between far-flung members of a standards organization.
Now however thanks to computers and the Internet, all that work is highly automated and the only reason they continue to charge high fees for access, is because nobody has called them on the carpet to explore why the fee barrier to access still exists. Or perhaps it is because these old organizations have enough established clout that nobody can challenge them on these fee issues.
Just as how the good ol' boy high-fee network of financial brokerages have been steamrolled by the likes of electronic transaction processors like Schwab, probably the standards organizations will be the next to be democratized, with either very low cost or open access (gasp) for the common man coming onto the scene, whether they want it or not.
DMahalko (talk) 13:21, 3 January 2010 (UTC)
Don't forget that *someone* has to pay for these organizations' secretariats. There are multiple ways (the IETF does meeting fees, the ITU does membership fees), but in discussing these matters, it's important to acknowledge that the standards organizations *do* have expenses, and they *do* need to be paid. However, in practice, the contribution to those expenses from sale of standards is rather small. --Alvestrand (talk) 14:07, 3 January 2010 (UTC)

Time for free standards?[edit]

These standards are priced too high. We should have a 'free standards' page in Wikipedia where everyone can collaborate and build one. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:58, 26 May 2010 (UTC)

What do you feel? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:24, 27 May 2010 (UTC)

you are able to create a spec/standard where you want. take github, google code or any other page (or w3c) and start creating it! wikipedia is the wrong place for that. mabdul 12:00, 27 May 2010 (UTC)
This is off-topic. Please limit discussions to the editorial content of this article. Rlsheehan (talk) 12:49, 27 May 2010 (UTC)

Premodern Standards Organizations?[edit]

What about Qin Shi Huangdi's standardization of everything from wheel axle sizes to the Chinese Orthography? Or the Indus Valley Civilization's (IVC) impressive standardized octal-decimal system of weights and measures, or the IVC's invention of interchangable parts (if I recall the latter correctly); these developments set a standard (no pun intended) that would not be surpassed until French Revolution and the Metric System and the 12th century Venitian Arsenal, respectively; so, why are they not mentioned? Or, for that matter, Teotihuacan's mass-produced thin-orange ware ceramics? 自教育 (talk) 17:22, 23 May 2014 (UTC)

You should create a "Pre-Modern Standards Organizations" section to the article and add that content. I think that would be fantastic contribution, just PLEASE add references and attributions. There is SO much psuedo-science around historical information like this that you will want to link your additions to some reputable sources. Thanks!I look forward to seeing more about that- very interesting! Alex Jackl (talk) 15:27, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

"Wide-Base of affected users"?[edit]

Since there was no reference and it was a value judgement I took out the comment about the affected users of standards organizations being a "wide-base". I know of standards that target very narrow and specialized interests so I don't think it is accurate. Alex Jackl (talk) 15:30, 5 October 2016 (UTC)