It was published today on ISO’s website a press release announcing that “…The two ISO and IEC technical boards have given the go-ahead to publish ISO/IEC DIS 29500, Information technology – Office Open XML formats…”, stating that “…None of the appeals from Brazil, India, South Africa and Venezuela received the support for further processing of two-thirds of the members of the ISO Technical Management Board and IEC Standardization Management Board…. ” That’s it, accepting the recommendation of the ISO Secretariat (use the link to also read the full appeals). Moreover, if the ISO secretariat recommend something different than that, wouldn’t they be publicly stating their guilty?
The press release don’t mention the arguments used to reject the appeals, and don’t provide any aditional information or arguments about the appealed items. The ballot listing ins’t also disclosed. As I already wrote earlier, the curtain of smoke that is covering and covered this whole process, works again in favour of those who enjoy the obscurity.
There’s a simple question that comes on my mind: What would happen if this appeal had been presented by England, United States, Germany and France? Do you believe that he would be summarily ignored as it was?
Brazil, India and South Africa were treated as second-line countries during the BRM, and together with Venezuela, the four were now treated with irrelevance again. This is for me a clear and concrete signal: ISO IS NOT ANYMORE THE APPROPRIATE AND LEGITIM FORUM TO DEAL WITH THE STANDARDISATION NEEDS AND ASPIRATIONS OF DEVELOPING COUNTRIES.
The entity was created in the “industrial era” and at this moment, presents clear signs of inadequacy to the “information era” in which we live. It is clear to everyone involved on the DIS 29500 (OpenXML) analysis process that it was distorted by commercial and business interests, presenting to all who want to see, the ways in which corporations influence in decisions that are theoretically of national sovereignty (and not corporate ones). It is also clear the forced legitimacy of a mistaken process, through the participation of many countries, even though most of them have only the right to AGREE. If not fulfil their role and DISAGREE, they are ignored as we were.
As a Brazilian and as a person who lost a year of life working seriously on it, I can only feel offended and attacked with this decision.
I believe that the time has come for developing countries unite to build an International Standardization Institution that is appropriate to our reality, that understands our problems and aspirations and that treat us with the minimum amount of respect and dignity. Enough to be being used to legitimize the desires of someone else. While we’re in developement, we have the unique opportunity to develop (and change) the world and, we cannot let it go away.
I would also like to invite all those people and organizations in developing countries or not, that want to build a more just and equity based world, to unite us all in this initiative. Throughout all this process, I’m really tired of seeing good people being silenced and I believe we need and must do something about it.
Since I’ve lost a year of my life being used to legitimize such an atrocity, I’ll pleasuring spend the other ones that left me to work seriously to provide that this never happens again, and create an International Stadardization Institute that has the justice and equity as basic premises, is in my opinion the first step. We live on a Globalized world, and we all have things to learn with each other: let us give a chance to ourselves.
I thank the friends from India, South Africa and Venezuela that, as Brazil, did not accept the rule of ALWAYS AGREE and fought until the last moment simply to be heard. If they don’t want to hear us, it is because we are talking to the wrong people. Enough to spend our scarce resources and our energy with these people.
Let us build a better world. Lets go to work.