Freitag, August 31, 2007

Tracking the status of Office Open XML

UPDATE: OOXML has failed!

Final roundup here.

nilesh has created a google-map that shows the voting status.

See below for further info on the voting.

Update2: The official result has leaked by now. Lots of approval from non-P-Members, but not enough from P-Members.

Results are available here.

The submission of the OOXML document file format by Microsoft to ISO for fast-track acceptance as a worldwide standard, has created a heated discussion. Many (including me) view this >6000 page specification as being incomplete and severly bugridden. Nevertheless, only a few days short of the dead-line, many countries seem to either go for approve ("Yes"/"Yes with comments") or abstain - sometimes under very dubious circumstances - as can be read on

Here I will try to keep track of votes, as published by each country, trying to allow estimations on whether the standard will be approved or not.

I am working mostly with as a source here. List of P-Members is taken straight from the website.
A word about me beforehand: I am just an interested individual - I have no insight into any official standards procedures nor am I affiliated with any of the involved parties. So - take my information with a grain of salt.

This is the list, then:

Participating Countries (JTC1 and/or JTC1/SC34)

  • Australia ( JTC1 ): abstain

  • Azerbaijan ( JTC1 ): ?

  • Belgium ( JTC1 ): ?

  • Brazil ( SC34 ): no

  • Bulgaria ( SC34 ): ?

  • Canada ( JTC1 & SC34 ): ?

  • Chile ( SC34 ): abstain

  • China ( JTC1 & SC34 ): no

  • Colombia ( SC34 ): yes

  • Cyprus ( JTC1 & SC34 ): ?

  • Czech Republic ( JTC1 & SC34 ): no

  • Côte-d'Ivoire ( JTC1 & SC34 ): ?

  • Denmark ( JTC1 & SC34 ): no

  • Egypt ( SC34 ): ?

  • Ecuador ( JTC1 ): no

  • Finland ( JTC1 & SC34 ): abstain

  • France ( JTC1 & SC34 ): no

  • Germany ( JTC1 & SC34 ): yes

  • India ( JTC1 & SC34 ): no

  • Iran ( JTC1 ): no

  • Ireland ( JTC1 ): no

  • Italy ( JTC1 & SC34 ): abstain

  • Jamaica ( JTC1 ): ?

  • Japan ( JTC1 & SC34 ): ?

  • Kazakhstan ( JTC1 & SC34 ): ?

  • Kenya ( JTC1 & SC34 ): yes

  • Korea, Republic of ( JTC1 & SC34 ): no

  • Lebanon ( JTC1 & SC34 ): ?

  • Malaysia ( JTC1 ): ?

  • Malta ( JTC1 & SC34 ): yes

  • Netherlands ( JTC1 & SC34 ): abstain

  • New Zealand ( JTC1 ): no

  • Norway ( JTC1 & SC34 ): no

  • Pakistan ( JTC1 & SC34 ): ?

  • Poland ( SC34 ): yes

  • Romania ( SC34 ): yes

  • Saudi Arabia ( JTC1 ): ?

  • Singapore ( JTC1 ): yes

  • Slovenia ( JTC1 ): ?

  • South Africa ( JTC1 ): no

  • Spain ( JTC1 ): abstain

  • Sri Lanka ( SC34 ): ?

  • Sweden ( SC34 ): abstain

  • Switzerland ( JTC1 & SC34 ): yes

  • Thailand ( SC34 ): ?

  • Trinidad and Tobago ( JTC1 & SC34 ): ?

  • Turkey ( JTC1 & SC34 ): ?

  • USA ( JTC1 & SC34 ): yes

  • United Kingdom ( JTC1 & SC34 ): no

  • Uruguay ( JTC1 ): yes

  • Venezuela ( JTC1 & SC34 ): ?

Other countries

Some countries seem to be missing from that list - I wonder about the state of New Zealand, South Africa, Palestine and Portugal now?!

I think I finally understood the voting rules. I'll add another column to the table for countries, who are not P- or O-Members, but generally members of ISO.

Edit: Completely reordered the list. Now both P-Members of JTC1 and JTC1/SC34 are appearing.

Unfortunately there are still quite a lot of '?'s - would be great, if somebody could provide additional information.


Votes P-M JTC1 (41)P-M SC34 (36)OthersTotal
yes 7 8 1 11
no 13 9 1 15
abstain 5 5 2 9
unclear 16 14 0 20

A note on the P-Members: the iso website says that there are 41 members, however only 40 are listed - perhaps the list is not up to date.
Edit: missed the USA at the top. Updated list accordingly

Up to now, nothing seems to be decided yet... discounting my possible lack of information, of course.

According to this information, the vote for OOXML has failed. It did not reach the 2/3rds majority required by the P-Members of JTC1, as 13 members have been reported, voting "no" and 5 members are abstaining, with a total of 41 members. To get the 2/3rds majority, 19 members would have to vote "yes" on top of the 7 members that did already. However, only 16 members are remaining without a vote.

I will continue to fill in the gaps as more information gets public, until the official outcome is revealed. Meanwhile a great thanks goes to all those providing me with the necessary information - I could not have done it alone.

(End Update)

I'll try to link sources for each confirmed vote soon. Please contact me, if you have better (more accurate) information.

Sources updated

Combined result into table for better readability

List of members was flawed - relevant list is: JTC 1/SC 34


Henrik Skov hat gesagt…

Norway has voted "No, with comments" according to

balanceofcowards hat gesagt…

Thanks, added.

Stefan Gustavson hat gesagt…

Brazil is now a P-member of JTC1/SC34. (Source: ISO website, Sept 1)

balanceofcowards hat gesagt…

>Brazil is now a P-member of JTC1/SC34. (Source: ISO website, Sept 1)

Are you sure?
The website still seems to list it as an observing member.

balanceofcowards hat gesagt…

Nevermind, you were right, of course.
Didn't realize, that there are different member statuses in the different subgroups ("SC"s).
Will update the list accordingly.

Henrik Skov hat gesagt…

Denmark has voted "no, with comments".

Press release (in danish):

The comments (in english):

balanceofcowards hat gesagt…

... updated, thanks.

Yoon Kit hat gesagt…

Canada: No

balanceofcowards hat gesagt…

yoon kit: Do you have any source for canada?

Anonym hat gesagt…

Here's a reference to Canada's vote as well as a few others:

Thanks for keeping track!

Yoon Kit hat gesagt…

Sorry, you are right. Canada has no source. They intend to not publish until after the 2nd.

HEre is some 2nd hand info about France:

70% against MSOOXML, and AFNOR will vote No.

balanceofcowards hat gesagt…

Ok, so I guess we'll get a "no" from France. Updating...

balanceofcowards hat gesagt…

>Here's a reference to Canada's vote as well as a >few others:

This article dates back to February and as far as I get it, it is not concerned with the overall acceptance of OOXML, but with acceptance for Fast-Track procedure.

Luc Bollen hat gesagt…

My understanding is that the list that matters is the list of P-Members of the JTC1, found at,
and not the list of P-Members of the JTC1-SC34.

See also
for a discussion by Andy Updegrove about membership of JTC1 and JTC1-SC34.

carlos hat gesagt…

i'm from argentina:

argentina has abstained

( you can link it via google translation -> english )

balanceofcowards hat gesagt…

Ok, so now I reordered the list to contain both, P-Members of JTC1 and P-Members of JTC1/SC34.

Thanks for the hint to Argentina. That link also stated a "yes" for Uruguay (if I interpreted the translation correctly - I don't speak spanish), so I updated both.

Ryszard hat gesagt…

Poland has voted "Yes", there is a protest against the decision, but shamefully "yes".

balanceofcowards hat gesagt…

Added Poland with polish source. I don't speak polish, but the headline speaks for itself.

Anonym hat gesagt…

Thank you for this list, it is exactly what I needed.

carlos hat gesagt…

i noted that you put a "yes" under Australia? what is your source?

in my understanding, there is no official position yet there ( see )

balanceofcowards hat gesagt…

>i noted that you put a "yes" under Australia? what is your source?

Yeah - I'm kinda wondering myself... I was dead sure I had read about Australia voting yes, but I can't find that source anymore. I'd better put it back to '?' then....

raghos hat gesagt…

Chile will abstain.

carlos hat gesagt…

it seems that Malta will be "yes" ( this is one of the "stacked" p-members ):

you can put it in "yes" without doubt

by the way, chile has abstained ( 80% sure )

carlos hat gesagt…

Singapore = "yes"

Casep hat gesagt…

Chile vote Abstain. The official communicate it's only on email.

John hat gesagt…

Standards Australia

"Standards Australia has cast a vote to abstain from the ISO/IEC JTC1 ballot to adopt the DIS 29500 Office Open XML format draft standard as an International Standard. The decision to cast an abstain vote from the current ballot follows months of consultation and a clear lack of consensus in Australia on this issue by stakeholders."

balanceofcowards hat gesagt…

(Sorry for the late reply - I went to bed early yesterday)
I have added Australia, Chile, Malta and Singapore now. Thanks for all the information.

Guess we will have the exact result soon - meanwhile it's still looking tight for Microsoft from my perspective here...

Seo Sanghyeon hat gesagt…

Korea: disapprove with comment

Seo Sanghyeon hat gesagt…

Ireland: disapprove with comment

. hat gesagt…

Iran will vote no:

(Looks like a plain no, not a no-with-comments).

Anonym hat gesagt…

Are those 'total' figures in the column furthest right, correct? They don't make sense to me.

Anonym hat gesagt…

NSAI (Ireland) Press release (NSAI has voted Disapproval - with Technical Comments):

balanceofcowards hat gesagt…

Updated the list.

> Are those 'total' figures in the column furthest right, correct? They don't make sense to me.

First column is "P-Members of JTC1", second column is "P-Members of JTC1/SC34", third column is all other countries, last column is all countries together.
Since there may be countries that are P-Members of both, JTC1 and JTC1/SC34, the last column is NOT the sum of each row.

Anonym hat gesagt…

I think the problem is there should be a total of about 104 countries, but the last column only shows 55.

Anonym hat gesagt…

Ireland says no with comments:

Luc Bollen hat gesagt…

There are 104 "Member Bodies" and 42 "Corresponding Members" at ISO (see

I'm not sure who has right to vote (104 or 146 countries), but it is to be noted that 3 "Corresponding Members" are "O" members of JTC1 (Estonia, Hong Kong and Lithuania), and therefore should have right to vote. Also, Palestine is a "Corresponding Member" that is NOT a "O" member, but still announced a vote.

I hope this will become clear when the official votes are announced by ISO...

Anonym hat gesagt…

Switzerland has joined the club of Banana republics:

lord_alan hat gesagt…

The UK should announce shortly,1000000567,10005902o-2000331828b,00.htm

. hat gesagt…

From the wording 'It identified a number of technical issues in the document which need to be addressed before the UK can approve ISO/IEC DIS 29500 OOXML as an International Standard.' it appears the UK is a 'No, with comments'.

Anonym hat gesagt…

Well, let's do some math. At the moment we have 7 yes, 11 no and 17 unclear under the P-JTC members (I included the Yes of Switzerland.) Is there is one more No vote (may be from UK) it would be 12 no and 16 unclear. As far as I understand a majority of 2/3 of the votes of P-JTC members is required. This would mean if there are 12 no votes, there must be 25 yes votes. Even if all members who remain unclear now vote yes, there would be 7 + 16 = 23 yes votes as maximum. Does that mean that the final result would be no, so that M$ seriously has to work on the comments?

balanceofcowards hat gesagt…

> I think the problem is there should be a total of about 104 countries, but the last column only shows 55.

I did not count every country, that could possibly vote - only P-Members of either JTC1 or JTC1/SC34 (cause I'm not exactly sure, which commitee is the one with the 2/3rds majority required) as well as any countries announcing their vote (or intention to vote) somehow in public. So far, this only includes Argentina, Hungary, Palestine and Portugal.

Changed Switzerland to "yes"

balanceofcowards hat gesagt…

> At the moment we have 7 yes, 11 no and 17 unclear under the P-JTC members (I included the Yes of Switzerland.)

It's actually 18 unclear - I had Switzerland erroneously listed under "abstain" before. Thats 2 no-votes or 1 no, 1 abstain then, in order to have OOXML fail.

balanceofcowards hat gesagt…

Added UK as no - the press release really looks like a "no - with comments"

carlos hat gesagt…



must read

( )


Stefan hat gesagt…

We have now under the P-JTC members 7 Yes, 12 No and 17 Unclear.

Even if all 17 unclear vote yes, it would be 24 yes. That's just one vote too less for a 2/3 majority.

balanceofcowards hat gesagt…

> Even if all 17 unclear vote yes, it would be 24 yes. That's just one vote too less for a 2/3 majority.

24 of 36 is in my reckoning exactly 2/3rds

Corrected Ecuador

carlos hat gesagt…

ecuador = no

( i'll give you the link later )



balanceofcowards hat gesagt…

> ecuador = no

If that's true, that would be the one missing vote. Where do you have that information from?

carlos hat gesagt…

>Where do you have that information from?

it is green on this map...

but you are right: could be wrong


elgaard hat gesagt…

You mean that map that says
"shown votes are only estimations"!.

mcz hat gesagt…

Ecuador vote NO.

balanceofcowards hat gesagt…

Ok, that's it. As long as JTC1 (and not JTC1/SC34) is the relevant group (can somebody confirm this?), the vote for Microsoft has failed.

Hope to see the official announcement soon...

Björn Michaelsen hat gesagt…
has quite a bit on the standardization process.

balanceofcowards hat gesagt…

I have read several times now. that the P-Members consist of 40 countries (which is only true for JTC1) - so I take it, that JTC1 really is the relevant group and therefore Microsoft has failed!

lord_alan hat gesagt…

It's 41.

balanceofcowards hat gesagt…

Yeah, I know - but the last one was introduced quite recently (IIRC) - I still think JTC1 is the relevant one - JTC1/SC34 has only 36 P-Members

nilesh hat gesagt…

A google map with OOXML voting status here:

balanceofcowards hat gesagt…

Cool. I'll link to that from the top.

Anonym hat gesagt…

Congo, Cote D'Ivoire, Nigeria, Ghana voted YES. Morocco, Algeria, Egypt, Iraq voted YES afaik. Iran will vote NO afaik. See the map on

balanceofcowards hat gesagt…

The map on noooxml is not based on votes, but on predictions.

patrick hat gesagt…

According to a reaction on the consortiuminfo website ( , the Disapproval has leaked via the finnish standardization body.

See for the tally.

lord_alan hat gesagt…

I would say it's now official :-)
51 votes for OOXML, BUT not enough of the critical "P" votes to make it a standard automatically. Now the fight really starts in the run up to the BRM next February.

Anonym hat gesagt…

austria vote Yes

balanceofcowards hat gesagt…

Linked the results on top.

balanceofcowards hat gesagt…

Wow, I've been linked from Heise (a german IT newssite). Guess I've had some exposure then :)

Luc Bollen hat gesagt…

Does the fight really starts now ? I'm not sure.

MS even don't need to convince any NB to change their vote : they just have to buy a few more votes (there are not a lot left, but probably enough to reach 75% of the votes - possible candidates are Algeria, Bahrein, Botswana,Estonia, Ethiopia, Libya, Mongolia, Oman, Saint Lucia, Sudan...) and to upgrade a few to P status, to reach 2/3 of the P votes. Done. Game over. Everybody (except MS) loose.

balanceofcowards hat gesagt…

I've written a short roundup here.

I hope thinks will work out well in February...