XBRL: How to Save a Good Idea from a Bad Implementation

November 10, 2013

If the problems with the U.S. Health Insurance Marketplace website have taught us anything, it is that implementation problems can overshadow the good ideas underlying government initiatives. The same problem is occurring right now with the Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) adoption of XBRL, and critics must take care not to reject the idea of open financial reporting standards in light of a flawed implementation.

Publicly-traded companies must disclose financial statements to the SEC on a quarterly basis.