Still no word: ISO to announce results of OOXML vote Wednesday

The International Standards Organization won't make an official announcement about whether Office Open XML (OOXML) will be a standard until Wednesday -- and perhaps for good reason.Final voting and reporting on the proposal was expected Monday but the ISO said it decided to hold off on an announcement until April 2 "because ISO needs first to inform its worldwide membership of national standards bodies of these results, " according to a statement issued by ISO spokesman Roger Frost today.

The International Standards Organization won't make an official announcement about whether Office Open XML (OOXML) will be a standard until Wednesday -- and perhaps for good reason.

Final voting and reporting on the proposal was expected Monday but the ISO said it decided to hold off on an announcement until April 2 "because ISO needs first to inform its worldwide membership of national standards bodies of these results, " according to a statement issued by ISO spokesman Roger Frost today.

Microsoft gained Yes votes from Finland, South Korea, Norway, Denmark and Ireland but it's not a done deal yet.

Norway voted "Yes" on OOXML but on Monday the chairman of the Norwegian technical committee responsible for evaluating OOXML cited irregularities in voting and that Norway's vote should be "No."

Microsoft, for its part, offered no comment on the results of the vote but issued a statement which alluded to its painful, two-year battle to make OOXML an ISO standard (like the rival OpenDocument Format backed by IBM and Sun) as a "remarkable process."

"We respect ISO’s desire to first inform its National Body members and all the people who have worked so hard during this process. This has been a remarkable process, involving literally thousands of technical experts, technology consumers, and governments in 87 countries, whose input has helped to improve Ecma’s submitted Open XML standard," according to the statement, issued after the ISO indicated it would hold off on the announcement until Wednesday. "Out of respect for the standards process, we will not comment before the final results are known.”

One spokeswoman for the company would only say she was "excited to hear the outcome this morning - major disappointment that it won't be until Wednesday. From what we've heard, it's really close."

Tempers flared online over a Grokaw report on Saturday about alleged "voting irregularities" in Germany and Croatia and requests for an official investigation into Norway's changed vote.

Germany, for its part, disputes that claim. The Deutsche Institute for Norming insisted that there were no irregularities in voting and no changed to the Yes vote it previously entered for OOXML.