[odf-discuss] Response from a GNOME Foundation board director

Jeff Waugh jdub at perkypants.org
Tue Oct 30 00:33:55 EDT 2007

<quote who="Russell Ossendryver">

> A letter has been posted to GNOME:
> http://digg.com/linux_unix/A_Letter_to_the_Gnome_Foundation

Firstly, a response directly to Russell: Please, if you're going to post an
"open letter", you actually need to send it to the person or organisation
you're writing it to. Otherwise, you've just written a blog post. It's also
worth raising and discussing your concerns with said person or organisation
before going public, to gain information and to actively pursue resolution
without unnecessary confrontation. You didn't contact the GNOME Foundation,
you wrote the letter with very little insight into the issue, and have badly
represented the Open Document Fellowship to another community organisation.

So, now to respond to the issues that participants on this list have raised:

 * While Jody Goldberg (Gnumeric maintainer) was at Novell, he had been
   doing rocking work on TC45-M to make sure OOXML didn't just slip through,
   under-specified and uninvestigated.

 * When Jody left Novell, the GNOME Foundation joined TC45-M to support his
   participation, so he could continue to "keep the bastards honest". OOXML
   is better documented as a result of his participation.

 * Participation in ECMA and implementation of OOXML do not indicate support
   for it as an ISO standard. There are plenty of other organisations with
   similar "political expectations" as GNOME involved in TC45-M, most likely
   for many of the same reasons.

 * Jody has his own opinion on the issues surrounding ODF and OOXML, based
   on his deep experience implementing FLOSS office software and formats,
   and his knowledge of both ODF and OOXML.

 * The GNOME Foundation does not seek to define or control the opinions of
   contributors to the GNOME project.

 * The GNOME Foundation does not seek to define or control the development
   goals of contributors to the GNOME project.

 * The GNOME Foundation is a member of the ODF Alliance, and supports open
   standards in general, and software freedom specifically.

Happy to answer any questions that you may have.


- Jeff

  Jeff Waugh
  Director, GNOME Foundation
  m: +61 423 989 818
  p: +61 2 9318 0284
  w: http://perkypants.org/

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