Governments adopt OpenDocument Format

Governments are increasingly adopting the open-source OpenDocument Format (ODF), according to the annual report by the ODF Alliance.

Governments are increasingly adopting the open-source OpenDocument Format (ODF), according to the annual report by the ODF Alliance.

"By any measure, 2007 was an incredibly successful year for ODF, as an unparalleled number of governments - both national and regional - recognised ODF as a truly open standard format for the future," said Marino Marcich, managing director of the ODF Alliance.

"In 2007, proprietary formats became increasingly unacceptable, especially in the public sector, which must not only ensure long-term preservation of records and access to public information, but must do so without requiring citizens to buy software from a particular vendor," said Marcich.

ODF is seen as a threat to the proprietary document formats that come with Microsoft's Office suite.

The report says the Netherlands and South Africa have officially adopted policies requiring ODF's use by government agencies, and Norway requires the use of ODF for all published, revisable documents on government web sites.

They now join 10 other countries and six regional governments that have adopted pro-ODF policies.

The ODF Alliance membership will soon surpass 500, it said, with member organisations in 53 countries.

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