What exactly will the initiative focus on?
Our efforts will be focused primarily on (a) coordination of standards-development efforts, (b) education and training about localization standards, and (c) promotion of standards efforts and their value.
How much does membership in this initiative cost?
There are no membership fees. However, carrying out the mission of GSI does require funding, therefore we suggest participants to consider donating to the annual initiative fund. Note that all financial records of the initiative will be open to the public. More details can be found on the funding page.
What business model will you use? How will you avoid creating a closed, pay-for-play model?
Activities will be open to the public, regardless of financial contribution. As noted above, however, we request voluntary donations to support the efforts of the initiative. All publications produced by the initiative, with the exception of detailed training workshops (which will be provided for a fee), will be made available under a Creative Commons 3.0 Attribution License. We anticipate that some longer-term projects, such as standards-based certification, will become financially self-sustaining.
Why do we need a new initiative? Can’t an existing standards body do what you propose to do?
Standards bodies exist to create standards, but this initiative will take on issues of coordination, education/training, and promotion that address the needs of the users of standards. These efforts require an external body that addresses the big picture of standards (see the GALA Whitepaper Standards: A Broad View for more details) including issues beyond the mandate of any existing standards body.
What contribution can GALA offer in standardization?
GALA represents one of the largest constituencies in the corporate language industry. As a large representative body, GALA can pool the resources of its members and combine those resources with those of other organizations in order to ensure that standardization efforts for localization have ongoing, independent funding, and that these efforts respond to the needs of the corporate language community. GALA can take a leading role in disseminating information about standards to its members and to the community. GALA can also represent its members’ requirements in the actual standards-development process. By working with others participating in an open and collaborative environment, GALA will help ensure that standards are open, representative, and usable by all.
What will this initiative accomplish for the industry as a whole?
We hope that we will find like-minded associations and individuals outside of GALA to help drive a common industry platform. We need to get past the time when each effort happened in a vacuum and with no coordination. Wherever the actual standards are developed, each group needs to know what is going on elsewhere. In this way, the developed standards will work together to deliver benefit to the industry.
Does this mean that GALA will become a standards body?
No. What it does mean is that you can expect GALA to take a greater role in helping drive standards in the globalization industry through established standards bodies such as OASIS, ISO TC 37, the Unicode Consortium, the W3C, and others. It also means that GALA hopes to coordinate activities with other associations active in this area in order to ensure that these groups are not duplicating their efforts or working in conflict with each other.
Can non-GALA members get involved with what you are doing?
Absolutely. We want to hear from anyone who wants to contribute. For far too long standards-development activities have been confined to members of one organization or another. We are interested in finding those who wish to contribute, regardless of whether they are GALA members or not. Obviously, you are free to join GALA, but we certainly won’t require you to do so.
How can I get involved with your efforts?
There are a number of ways. If you just want to know what we are doing, you can sign up for our . We are also requesting donations to support our activities. If you would like to contribute to some particular area of the plan (either financially or through an in-kind donation), please contact us for further details or visit GALA Connect to volunteer in a working group. If you would like to be involved, please write to .
Making Standards Work for the Localization Industry
The GALA Standards Initiative is a non-profit effort organized by the Globalization and Localization Association (GALA). Information contained in these pages is subject to periodic update. Questions and comments may be sent to .