let's not standardise what's normal!
Well let's face it getting the UKUUG to take one to court is not exactly normal! I can't think of a less litiguous group of people who have ever supped beer.
Whatever the internal normal workings of the BSI it is selling its product as Standards with International authority. This gives these documents and conforming products enormous marketing power.
When looking at comparisons of data formats in the market the metrics are not complicated. A data format can either be closed and proprietary or open. Being open means that its specification has to be complete and openly available so that any application or service developer can apply or interoperate with it. It should also be proven as interoperable which is why many technical standards activities require at least two implementations. Other alternatives are fair game provided they hit the road with these qualities.
If you standardise a data format which is closed (or not complete in the sense there is not enough information to use it as is the case with OOXML) you are promising something which cannot be delivered. You are promising an open interoperable format and OOXML does not meet that benchmark as it stands. This is an abuse of standardisation.
This is despite whether you adopt a nethead view that the term "Standard" is an incitement to irrelevance and should be dropped and it is despite the way that BSI levvies £40 for members and £80 or more for the rest of us just to get sight of our British Standards specification documents.
The BSI by promoting the OOXML specification as it stands is in danger of confusing the market. If the only way to get the BSI to reflect more deeply is to take them to court then so be it. I think the UKUUG are correct on this and deserve support.
But as the ISO itself has placed this under review it would make sense for the BSI to do the same. Then everybody can get back to grep'ng in the pub rather than the high court.