Image: ISOC
Image: ISOC
The Internet Society (ISOC), an Affirming Partner of the OpenStand Principles, recently released the first in a series of Global Internet Reports. The Reports are designed to showcase current topics that stand at core of ISOC’s work regarding the future of a diverse, multi-stakeholder Internet community. The first Global Internet Report, “Open and Sustainable Access for All,” champions the benefits of an open Internet and the ongoing need to understand the contributions the open Internet has made to global society. In summary, the report:

  • Addresses the benefits and challenges of an open and sustainable Internet
  • Addresses factors that limit or prevent prospective users from access
  • Identifies key milestones in the evolution of the Internet and the World Wide Web
  • Explores the benefits of the open Internet, extending to education, government, advocacy and participation
  • Outlines specific examples that demonstrate how the open internet has fostered ideas and positive change for governments, business, educators and citizens.

As the report describes, there are still differences in levels of access and openness across countries and addresses the barriers to usage that impact underserved people. As a result, the overall user experience varies significantly by country.  These differences, however, do not originate from issues related to technical standards, but rather from government policy and economic reality.

The report also features a mention of OpenStand.  Leslie Daigle, former Internet Society Chief Internet Technology Officer, wrote about the role OpenStand has played in the evolution of the open and sustainable Internet:

“As the Internet continues to grow, it is increasingly important to recognize this approach’s unique qualities and contribution to the Internet’s overall success — and how it has been part of the equation for successful companies and organizations that use the Internet. The OpenStand approach has given us the building blocks to create previously unimaginable services and opportunities to interconnect the world’s population. By tapping into the world’s greatest engineering talent, and more directly translating those talents into technical solutions, it creates the platform that generates innovation for everyone.”

The ISOC report concludes emphasizing that, as the Internet nears 3 Billion users the traditional Internet model should be honored.  When all stakeholders meet the foreseen challenges ahead, it will be possible to bridge that separates regions and peoples.  With access to an open Internet and an appropriate enabling environment, the resulting benefits of the Internet are limited only by the imagination and efforts of its users.

The Internet Society is working towards making sure that access to an open Internet becomes a global reality. For more about ISOC, please click here. You are also welcome to download this report free of charge, here.


Image: OKFN:Local Nepal

Open Knowledge Foundation Nepal, the Central Department of Library Science and FOSS Nepal Community organized a workshop in April 2014 to discuss open standards in support of Document Freedom Day. One of the goals of the workshop was to garner participation of diverse organizations and stakeholders with an interest and passion in open standards. Participants included the Open Source Club of Kathmandu University, FOSS Nepal Community, Open Knowledge Foundation Nepal, Mozilla Nepal Community, Wikimedians of Nepal, Central Department of Library Science Tribhuwan University, Ministry of Science, Technology and Environment for the Government of Nepal.

The workshop covered topics such as open standards implementation in other countries, free and open source licenses, open source libraries and the Document Freedom movement.  Prakash Neupane, the Ambassador of Open Knowledge Foundation Nepal, shared an impactful case example that highlighted problematic issues that arise from a failure to leverage basic open standards in technology development, proposing some possible solutions, actions and best practices for the future.

According to Prakash, one of the positive outcomes of the workshop was the agreement of the Nepali government’s IT Department to leverage open standards for the management of its data and growing web presence.

The world is embracing the need for open standards and open principles for technology development and management.  If you support the OpenStand Principles, we ask you to sign our pledge and Stand With Us in support as we showcase the implementation of open standards around the globe.

OKFestival 2014

Global, open access to information and technologies have the power to transform governments, collaboration, innovation and enable dialogue on key social, political and economic issues. As the open community continues to grow and work towards transparency and universal access to information, data and technology applications, the Open Knowledge Foundation is hosting the OKFestival 2014 in Berlin on July 15-17, 2014.

The OKFestival is dedicated to rallying nations around the world to share their skills and experiences regarding the use of open standards. A primary goal of the event is to encourage participants to work together to build tools and partnerships that will further the power of openness as a positive force for change. This year, conversations will be based around three narrative streams: knowledge, tools and society. The two-day event will feature community-led sessions that will cover topics such as:

  • Maintaining a healthy and thriving public domain: Exploring the notion of originality and copyright when digitising analogue works.

  • Mapping the corporate web: An open data approach.

  • A crowd sourced manifesto: What is the open data ‘social contract’ between governments and citizens.

  • Transparent Cities: Creating a shared framework for city governments to use data and technology to be more open, transparent and participatory.

  • Open Decisions API’s – Global standardization.

Open knowledge is a comprehensive concept that involves sharing knowledge in all its forms – from genes to geodata, from literature to programming code – so that the information can be freely used, modified and shared by anyone. The Open Knowledge movement asserts that knowledge and information have the power to transform societies and replace old hierarchies with more agile, diverse, networked and experimental systems based on the free flow of information.

The Open Knowledge Foundation is a non-profit organization founded in 2004 and dedicated to promoting open content and open data in all their forms – including government data, publicly funded research and public domain cultural content. For more information about the OKFestival, or to register for the event, click here.


From business to personal life, standards play a key role in life around us — and bringing together people across continents to enjoy the world’s largest sporting competition is no exception.The world’s attention has turned to Brazil for the next four weeks as the 2014 World Cup Brazil™ takes place. More than half of the world’s population watched the tournament in 2010, making this tournament a truly global event.  This year, a number of technological advancements will enhance the experience this year for athletes and fans alike. The infographic below, created by IEEE Standards Association, highlights how several innovations in technology, many of which are built upon open standards, are impacting the World Cup in 2014.

  • Thanks to Dr. Miguel Nocolelis and other pioneering neuroscientists, mind-controlled exoskeletons and prosthetics are no longer just a work of science fiction. The exoskeleton worn at the World Cup utilizes sensors contained in a 3-D printed headpiece that monitor brain waves, providing feedback to a computer in a battery-powered hydraulic suit that controls movement.  Beyond the World Cup demonstration, such strides in eHealth, robotics and sensors will play a significant future role in the lives of disabled persons around the globe.
  • There should now be no question as to whether a goal should be counted or not.  Sophisticated camera and sensors now record vibration and optical data each time a ball crosses the line, delivering signals to game officials via smart watch for instant evaluation.  This will not only help ensure more accurate calls — It may even reduce stadium brawls!
  • Preparing a stadium’s network to support an estimated 12.6 terabytes of data is not for the faint of heart.  Using Wi-Fi technology (IEEE Standard 802.11), MAC addresses, network switches and streaming video, fans in the stadium will be able to share every heart-pounding moment of the game with friends, family and the world.


IEEE World Cup Infographic

Standards empower the devices, networks and communications protocols that support life as we know it. Standards development organizations like IEEE rally participants around the world from a diverse array of cultures, sectors and industries for collaboration and development of new standards improve the way people live, work and communicate.

The OpenStand Principles have driven the rapid innovation and technological advancements over the past two decades. OpenStand advocates believe open standards form the building blocks for innovation, streamlining development, facilitating interoperability, and improving accessibility to new technology – supporting innovation to build a better world.

We hope you will show your support for a open innovation by becoming an advocate for open development and open standards.  We invite you to Stand With Us!


 shutterstock_156733775 (1)

As more and more apps are built, it is important to realize the value, benefits and market need for Open Standards in the application development process. So, here are five reasons open standards are essential to app development:

1. No boundaries, fewer limitations.  With open standards, application developers are not locked in to a specific technology or vendor.  The market decides which technologies are the most viable.  Because specifications are known and open, multiple vendors will be able to design unique apps that adhere to standards.  This streamlines development while allowing for freedom of choice and market-driven competition.

2. Streamlined development & interoperability. Open standards establish protocols and building blocks that can help make applications more functional and interoperable. This not only streamlines product development, it removes vendor-imposed boundaries to read or write data files by improving data exchange and interchange.

3. Better protection for files created on applications that implement open standards. When file types are proprietary and an application becomes obsolete, it is extremely difficult, if not impossible, to convert the data so it can be used on a new application. However, with open standards, file types and data are protected against applications becoming obsolete. If a file type follows open standard, then the new application will either be able to use it or easily convert the data.

4. More choices and variety.  Would you prefer being allowed to to pick and choose the dishes that most appeal to your appetite, rather than being forced to choose from a limited list of entrees?  Well, open standards essentially offer up an application developer’s buffet. This method of development helps developers match their needs to vendors without forcing the developer to lock in to the use of a single vendor for application development.

5. Applications are easier to port from one platform to another.  Because the technical implementation follows standardized rules and guidelines, and the interfaces and APIs used are known, it’s easier to port applications from one platform to another.  Further, the lessons learned from development on one platform can be ported to inform other platform development with less training.  In contrast, proprietary applications typically require ramp-in, training and more knowledge transfer, because there is inadequate information publically available about them.

Perhaps you can think of more reasons open standards are the perfect match for application developers.  If so, please leave your comments below!



In our last post,  we addressed the concept of “Permission-free innovation” or “Permissionless Innovation.” In some circles, people simply refer to the concept as “Open Innovation.” Whatever you call it, without question, the scope and implications of permissionless, open innovation extend well beyond fast-tracking technology development.

The same principles that enable open Internet and technology development  - driving the next “great gadget” or technological advancement also enable individuals to freely use the Internet for their own purposes, contributing to the free and open exchange of ideas and communication. The ability to easily share ideas drives innovation and fosters social change.  Perhaps most importantly, these principles give people, who may have once been voiceless, a platform to learn, grow, share ideas and express their views.

As it stands today, two-thirds of the world’s populations do not have access to the Internet.  One of the goals of Internet organizations like IETF, ISOC, IAB, W3C and others is to help ensure that everyone has access to the Internet in the coming decades.  As the Internet plays a more integral and critical role in education, business and government, it will be essential for these underserved people to be gain access.  In fact, the UN recently declared that disconnecting people from the Internet is a human rights violation and against international law.

“Broad participation is going to be even more important in the increasingly connected world, where Internet matters for everyone from farmers to engineers to nurses to government officials,” writes Jari Arkko, Chair of the IETF. “Secondly, decisions can not be taken without understanding the benefits and operation of global communications networks.”

Permissionless innovation is also a guideline for fostering innovation by removing barriers to entry.  This raises flags of concern among some constituencies, who mistake permissionless innovation as an environment where innovation occurs without laws and consequences, and without respect for Intellectual Property. This is far from the case. Instead, the tenets of permissionless, or open innovation focus on openness within an agreed upon set of standards.

The Internet Society remarked in this paper on Intellectual Property on the Internet:

Comparably, when we talk about innovation without permission, we should not consider innovation that does not obey to any rules. Clayton Christensen, for instance, has argued that innovation could largely raise the probabilities of success if it complies to four rules: 1) taking root in disruption, (2) the necessary scope to succeed, (3) leveraging the right capabilities and (4) disrupting competitors, not customers. So, when the supporters of the open Internet talk about innovation without permission they refer to the ability of those who want to market new technologies to do so without having to further justify them according to existing business or other related standards. For example, the US Supreme Court has taken a similar view in Sony v. Universal Studios, Inc., where it asserted that new technology innovators do not “carry the burden of persuasion that a new exception to the broad rights enacted by Congress should be established”. We can, therefore, surmise that it is primarily the open architecture of the Internet that encourages innovation – we can call it “open innovation”.

The future of the Internet and technology development as we know it depend on open innovation.  The OpenStand Principles directly support the kind of open innovation that has driven the technological advancements of prior decades.  If you support permissionless innovation, show your support by Standing With Us.


Today, June 3rd, the IRM Summit takes place in Phoenix, Arizona.  The Summit will explore how Identity Relationship Management (IRM) is becoming a critical  backbone for the future of secure identity management, privacy and integrated commerce – and an increasingly complicated landscape to navigate.

 “In today’s internet-connected world, employees, partners, and customers all need anytime access to secure data from millions of laptops, phones, tablets, cars, and any devices with internet connections. Identity relationship management platforms are built for IoT, scale, and contextual intelligence. No matter the device, the volume, or the circumstance, an IRM platform will adapt to understand who you are and what you can access.”

Lasse Andresen, CTO of ForgeRock, a sponsor of the IRM Summit, puts it this way:

Summit highlights include the following:

  • Karen McCabe, Senior Director of Collaboration and Consensus Community at IEEE, will discuss OpenStand and the importance of collaborative communities as they relate to business development.
  • Kantara Initiative will host a workshop discussing identity as not only a technical solution, but a core business connection driver. Join leaders from Experian, ForgeRock, Forrester Research, IEEE-SA, Radiant Logic, Gartner and for this discussion to kick off the IRM Summit.
  • Joni Brennan, Senior Program Manager at IEEE and Executive Director of the Kantara Institute, will provide an overview on IRM landscape, Trusted ID, ICAM and FCCX (Federal Cloud Credential Exchange.)
  • Ian Glazer, Senior Director of Identity at Salesforce, will discuss NSTIC (National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace) and the IDESG (Identity Ecosystem Steering Group).
  • Eve Maler, Principal Analyst serving security and risk professionals at Forrester, will address UMA for Enterprise Access Management 2.0.

Check out the full agenda here.

Image: ISOC
Image: ISOC
In a recent article, Leslie Dagel, Chief Internet Technology Officer for the Internet Society (ISOC) penned the article “Permissionless Innovation:  Openness – Not Anarchy.” In the article, Dagel describes permissionless innovation as follows:

“…’permission-free innovation’ is used to describe how the Internet differs from closed telecommunications networks, where only the local operators could build, deploy, and offer new services to their customer base, and that within a stringent regulatory (permission-requiring) regime.”

Says Dagel, “The Web is the poster child for the ‘permission-free innovation’ that the Internet has enabled.”  She went on to state, “Sir Tim Berners-Lee did not have to ask a central authority whether or not he could write a client-server hypertext system. He wrote it; others who found the possibilities interesting downloaded clients and servers and started using it.”

Dagel argues that permissionless innovation is not a green light for anarchy. Instead, it’s about removing a layer of regulation, allowing for cooperation and open access to technologies and services already in place, which will operate within the bounds of existing norms – technical standards, operational practices, and local laws.

The OpenStand Principles of Cooperation, Adherence to Principles, Collective Empowerment, Availability and Voluntary Adoption support the concept and objectives of permissionless innovation, and seek to to preserve the open, global innovation that have brought us technologies like the Internet.

Be sure to Sign Your Name and Stand With Us to keep standards and the web open. You can read more of Dagel’s post here.