[LINK] Australian standards blocked from open access
Tom.Worthington at tomw.net.au
Wed Jul 8 09:12:45 AEST 2009
Standards Australia and SAI Global have received the results of
arbitration over the publishing and distribution rights for
The result is that SAI Global has exclusive publishing rights for
standards issued by Standards Australia, even those standards
developed by a third party. The effect of this would appear to
preclude the provision of any SA endorsed standards in an open access
format free online.
To avoid such issues, when asked to help draft a standard, I now
first check that the standard will be available open access online.
If the standard is not going to be free online, then I decline to
take part in the development. Organisations such as W3C, IETF and
OASIS make their standards freely available. Versions of these
standards may later be made into government endorsed standards, but
the text remains available.
The agreement between SA and SAI Global seems to preclude open access
to standards, even where those standards were made by an independent
body and then put through the SA process. I will therefore be
declining to take part in any standards making through Standards
Australia. I recommend that my colleagues in the ICT industry also
consider withdrawing support for SA processes, due to the detrimental
effect this closed process will have on the Australian ICT industry.
I will be asking the professional bodies I am a member of to withdraw
funding and support from SA and transfer it to other standards making
bodies which do not impose restrictions on access to standards. Also
I will be asking my professional bodies to ask the Australian
Government to withdraw endorsement and funding from Standards
Australia for standards making.
Tom Worthington FACS HLM tom.worthington at tomw.net.au Ph: 0419 496150
Director, Tomw Communications Pty Ltd ABN: 17 088 714 309
PO Box 13, Belconnen ACT 2617 http://www.tomw.net.au/
Adjunct Senior Lecturer, Australian National University
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