Imagine a world without Standards…

The World Standards Day competition is back!

By Zoë Smart

Already in its 17th year, the World Standards Day competition is back – with a twist! This year participants are being asked to submit a short video rather than the traditional poster.

International Standards – the world’s common language

What would it be like to live in a world where International Standards were absent? Imagine if credit cards were different shapes and sizes and each needed a specific machine to work, or if manufacturers produced different sized light bulbs. What if graphical symbols such as the power symbol varied from country to country or from machine to machine…Have you ever wondered how your computer sends your documents to a printer from a different manufacturer? Standards set out common rules and parameters so that products can work with each other. Standard file formats like MPEG and JPEG enable users to share videos and photos with family and friends using technology from different vendors. 

Standards are essential for products to work together smoothly and for people to communicate easily and they facilitate global trade. In a world without Standards, routine activities we take for granted, like making a call, surfing the Web or using our credit cards when we travel, would be much more complicated, nearly impossible.

Set your imagination free and take part in the 2015 WSD competition!

This year, the WSC (World Standards Cooperation) is asking participants to come up with a 15 second video showing one thing that would not work or that we could not do if International Standards didn’t exist. All video submissions must be uploaded on YouTube and the link shared on social media with the hashtag #speakstandards. Read the full rules here

The winning video will be awarded 1,500 Swiss francs, with three runner-ups each receiving 500 Swiss francs.

About World Standards Day

Each year on 14 October, the members of the IEC, ISO and ITU celebrate World Standards Day, which is a means of paying tribute to the collaborative efforts of the thousands of experts worldwide who develop the voluntary technical agreements that are published as international standards.