Closed Standard

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= A closed standard is a file format, protocol or program which has wide public acceptance, but which does not comply with the requirements for a free/libre or open standard. Examples include file formats or protocols whose specifications are not publicly available, software whose source code is not available, and patent-encumbered technologies. Closed standards are typically developed by private companies with limited public or even industry participation. [1]


By the FFII:

"A specification normalized and licensed in any non free form indeed not public and not common for all the licensees (you have to negotiate with the owner of the IPRs). Specification itself could cost money but should be public (if not, it wouldn't be a standard). ECMA should be included in that category, since during its specification process doesn't warranty enough that Technical Committee members reveal its IPRs (patents mainly) covering the standard." (

More Information

  1. Non Standard
  2. Open Standards