IBM is a member of Ecma to whom Microsoft has submitted the Open XML document format specification to be used in Office 12 thereby neatly disarming calls for open document standards that worked to the disadvantage of Microsoft Office. As a result, IBM could participate in the Open XML standards committee but has decided not to as Bob Sutor, IBM VP for Standards, explains to Martin LaMonica at CNET:
“We think there are just too many open switches on this right now for us to go in and do something there. Given the charter, it’s not clear what anyone other than Microsoft is going to be doing on this committee,” Sutor said on Tuesday.
Sutor said Microsoft was trying to have its document formats “rubber-stamped” as standards by Ecma. He said it doesn’t appear that the committee, which has Microsoft representatives as co-chairs, can be influenced by companies other than Microsoft.
Ouch! This is a common complaint about the Ecma committee from OpenDocument supporters and IBM is firmly in that camp.