Wiebe van der Worp wiebe at vrijschrift.org
Mon Apr 30 16:10:49 UTC 2007

After quickly reading the OOXML thread I am even more convinced it is
time to deal with OOXML as a separate project.

In short: we have been able to find a sponsor and one of us is now in
the Dutch standardization organization to counter balance the process.
Being aware that one country doesn't make the difference we've created
ooxml.scriptumlibre.org in order to organize efforts, share experiences
and or inspire other countries.

About additional financial means: there are parties willing to pay and
it might be smart to join some efforts at the ooxml mailing list.

Right now the site ooxml.scriptumlibre.org is blanc except for the
frontpage reflecting my opinion:

Please forward this message to other appropriate lists...

In the current process of making OOXML an ISO standard the national
standardization bodies are involved. Unfortunately the free information
/ software movement is almost not participating in the OOXML committees
in many countries. This results in a threatening and dangerous situation.

And the situation is even worse:

    * First, some decisions are already taken and we can't turn back the
clock, the standardization process is continuing every minute.
    * Second, Microsoft is represented in the standardization institute
in your country by themselves and probably some "stake holding" companies.
    * Third, to influence the process you probably must become member of
a committee and that takes time and costs money.

Having said this I hope you agree dark clouds have gathered above us. It
was a smart step of Microsoft to continue the fast track procedure
knowing we are not organized enough to counter them right now.

So what can we do? No, what must be done!

    * Get organized: there is an English spoken mail list at
http://lists.scriptumlibre.org/listinfo/ooxml, join it.
    * We have to find out who are participating in your country. Make an
entry at http://ooxml.scriptumlibre.org and publish it.
    * Then we have to restore the balance at places where it is needed most.
          o Seek committee members who are on our side.
          o And or join your national committee.

Your help is urgently needed and there is no time to loose.

Thank you!

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