Microsoft forced partners to vote Yes!

Vote Yes to OOXML and we'll make sure that you get extra marketing money for you campaigns; this is Microsoft's Sweden's own words when they rounded up their Gold Partners in Sweden. Klas Hammar, Microsoft Sweden now regrets the formulation and regrets that the e-mail was sent out.

Swedish newspaper, Computer Sweden, now confirms that Microsoft did send out e-mails to get Gold Partners to get them to vote via one of the Gold Partners that received the e-mail and phone calls from Microsoft.

According to the e-mail that Microsoft sent out and only to few partners, at least that is what Microsoft claims, Gold Partners expect to participate at the meeting with SIS (Swedish Standards Institute) and "to vote yes to Open XML". The partner companies are also asked to participate to a number of meetings after the vote to "show good will".

For the partners that doesn't think that they have right knowledge and/or understanding regarding OOXML Microsoft then also offers arguments why the choose to vote yes - "[Partner company] doesn't need to discus the technical content of the specification but must be prepered to give a few arguements why the voted yes - those will be given by Microsoft", says Microsoft.

The 2500 USD fee to SIS is something that the partner company had to pay by themself, but Microsoft then promise "marketing contribution" and "extra support in the form av Microsoft resources" to those companies that participates in the vote.

Klas Hammar, Business Manager at Microsoft Sweden claims that the e-mail that they sent out was badly formulated and that he has withdrawn the information. He also claims that Microsoft wouldn't even think about trying to buying votes or as he says "that it would be crazy to think that we did". But he does admit that they have encourage their partners to be part of the final vote...

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