Open standards in Germany

Open Standards definition of the Bundestag - Germany June 2007

How the FFII helped the German Bundestag make the right decision about open standards.

On the 6th of June 2007, the coalition of the German government submitted to the German Parliament (Bundestag) a motion asking the Government to boost the use of open standards in the information technology. However, the definition of open standards on the submitted text was exactly the so called RAND [1] definition, which is damaging for SMEs and Open Source developers. It is worth noticing that that RAND is the definition pushed by Microsoft to be able to offer its OOXML format as Open Standard and control the competition, and that the date of the submission was just a couple of weeks before the decision of the German Standardisation Organisation (DIN) about OOXML as an ISO Standard (see [2]).

Two members of the German Working group of the FFII in joint cooperation with representatives of German SMEs associations, started a campaign to inform the German politicians of the problems of that definition and assist them. They managed to involve many SMEs associations, groups of the civil society and the press. The Bundestag postponed the decision one week and finally the definition was changed.

Links to dozens of articles in the press and a more detailed description of the FFII success is available in German on:

The FFII German Group Webpages are at




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  • Ivan F. Villanueva B. <gro.iiff|navi#gro.iiff|navi>