Endreport: Is standardization deemed to be against FS and how can it be tackled?

Nico Rikken nico.rikken at fsfe.org
Sun Jul 12 07:35:01 UTC 2015

Dear Tom,

Thanks for working out the summary and refining your point of view. I
adopt the view that any standard is an improvement, and the more open
the better (e.g. to avoid OOXML like practices). I too am convinced that
the FSFE should consider a more strict position on this point, and
should educate the audience regarding this issue.

Looking at the source-code of the web-page [1], it seems a more
descriptive formulation regarding the definition was revised to adopt
the stance of the European Commission's Europe Interoperability
Framework (EIF) in which the FSFE participated. So in that regard,
solely considering the web-page could be subject to an oversimplified
explanation, and politics.

[1] https://trac.fsfe.org/fsfe-web/changeset?new=30236%40trunk%

I noticed you already contacted the FSFE directly regarding this issue
(as I was CC'd), and I'd like to add to that effort.

Am I correct to over-summarize the discussion to:

"The FSFE's currently adopted Open Standards definition [2] allows for
discrimination by price and scope of use, as common practice doesn't
suit a model of multiple individual contributors (community) or
development by less wealthy developers. It lacks to force the ability of
anyone to take part in the standardization process. And it lacks to
force patents that were part of the standardization process to be
available under licenses which suit the free software license model, in
order to avoid requesting individual licenses by the users."

[2] https://fsfe.org/activities/os/def.html

If I'm missing some points, please add to it, because I'd like this to
become a more official discussion within the FSFE. Currently it is a
statement on a web-page, and I believe bringing this point up for
discussion would allow a more refined definition.

So thanks for taking on the effort to discuss and document this subject,
as it certainly enables a reconsideration of the current stance.

Kind regards,
Nico Rikken
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