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Oracle Re-Affirm Commitment to OpenOffice.org As New Foundation Publishes Manifesto

Next Decade for OpenOffice?

Jessica Thornsby

Oracle participate in ODF Plugfest and announce new OpenOffice.org versions, as Open Document Foundation publishes their manifesto.

Last week, Oracle posted a press release that trumpeted the company’s “commitment to the OpenOffice.org community” – whilst taking care to ignore the recently-launched Open Document Foundation and its LibreOffice fork.

The press release listed Oracle’s recent demonstrations of commitment to OpenOffice.org: it participated in the ODF Plugfest in Berlin; and announced OpenOffice.org 3.2.1 and OpenOffice.org 3.3 Beta. However, the press release failed to mention where Oracle stand on the Open Documentation Foundation, which aims to evolve the OpenOffice.org community along a more open and independent line, by introducing a new organisational structure. Google, Red Hat, Canonical and Novel have all announced their support for the project.

Undeterred by Oracle’s failure to acknowledge them, the Open Document Foundation have published their ‘Next Decade Manifesto,’ which throws additional light onto what we can expect from the Foundation. The document promises a peer-reviewed, transparent development process and support for additional languages; and has some strong words to say about “monopoly suppliers” who they feel impose “a defacto tax on global electronic free speech and penalises the economically disadvantaged.”

The Foundation will take the form of a not-for-profit organisation, and membership will be open to all – assuming the individuals agree with the Foundation’s core values and are willing to contribute to its activities. After a leaked memo revealed that Oracle were discontinuing OpenSolaris, some members of the community questioned if a similar fate lay ahead for OpenOffice.org, and called for the creation of a foundation. It seems, in the Open Document Foundation, they may have got their wish.

A beta version of LibreOffice is out now.

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