Massachusetts CIO Resigns Over OpenDocument

 
 
By Ed Oswald, BetaNews  |  Posted 2005-12-28
 
 
 

Peter Quinn, the man responsible for bringing OpenDocument to the state of Massachusetts as CIO, will resign on Jan. 9, citing the controversy around the decision as well as personal attacks aimed at him as reasons for his departure.

No announcement has been made as to a replacement. However, Quinn did stress to employees of the states Information Technology Division (ITD) that just because he was leaving, it did not mean that Massachusetts progress towards ODF was ending.

The move to standardize on the OpenDocument format for all electronic documents in Massachusetts began on Sept. 1, when the proposal was first approved. The plan was quickly attacked by Microsoft, which called it "inconsistent and discriminatory."

Microsoft has since submitted its new Office Open XML formats to Ecma International for standardization.

Quinn stressed that his resignation was not forced. In an interview with Groklaw, Quinns prior boss Eric Kriss said that Quinn was ill-prepared for the game of political football that the ODF controversy had created.

"Peter is an IT professional who is not accustomed to the rough-and-tumble world of politics," Kriss said. "He found the last few months to be very distasteful, especially the Boston Globe article that seemed to imply some sort of improper influence related to his conference travel."

Quinn was cleared of any wrongdoing the Globe article implied by an internal review.

Details of Quinns resignation were first reported by Andy Updegrove in the Consortiuminfo.org Standards blog Tuesday.

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