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04.12.08

Change of Name as Escape from Bad Reputation, Past Criminal Record

Posted in Deception, ISO, Microsoft, Open XML at 1:30 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

MOOX gets plastic surgery

Since when is OOXML called “OXML”? Ah, since that gory red glove was taken off.

We can’t call it “Office Open XML” anymore, because it no longer belongs to Microsoft Office exclusively.

Maybe this is cynical and maybe just far fetched, but as we have seen before, Microsoft’s choice of names is rarely spontaneous or coincidental. Microsoft even knowingly stomps on others in the process of naming. It leads to a self-serving confusion.

[More Open Than Open]: “I am constantly amazed at the flexibility of this single word.”

Jason Matusow, Microsoft (for background see [1, 2])

It is quite possible that Microsoft will be trying to escape the bad name, leaving behind all those past stories about bribery, deception, bullying and political manipulation. Name changes like these are nothing new. It’s a blank sheet. It was probably done with Longhorn after its “development collapse” (Microsoft own terminology) when the project was suddenly renamed “Vista”.

If you believe that nobody will adopt the term “OXML”, think again. The Register seems to have already embraced it for this new article (occurrences highlighted in red).

Meanwhile, a variety of voices have loudly bemoaned what they see as the unwelcome arrival of OXML on the global stage.

On Wednesday rage spilled out onto the usually quiet streets of Oslo where around 60 data experts, led by ex-chairman of the Norwegian Standards Institute (NSI) Steve Pepper, protested about the approval of the contentious file format.

Pepper stepped down from his role at the NSI last week following the group’s U-turn on OXML. It had voted, in September last year, to reject the specification as a standard.

[...]

Some politicians have also continued to express their opposition to Microsoft’s dominant position in the software market. This week an EU parliament member from Germany’s Green Party filed a question (pdf) with the EC asking it to consider banning the firm from selling its products to European Union governments for up to five years.

Heidi Rühle argued that such a ban was justified following the record fine (€1.35bn) handed down to Microsoft from the Commission in February this year.

The article is merely a roundup and it bothers to mention some of the latest (and very major) developments in Europe.

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