Mankind has always struggled to agree on the best way to do certain key tasks. This is the origin of society itself - every culture that has ever existed has at its heart a shared set of standards by which it lives and through which it interacts with the world around it.
These standards define what is and what isn't acceptable, and they give the members of that society a shared frame of reference by which they can understand each other. Language, commerce and even religion have all been expressions of that shared set of standards.
Financial messaging standards are a continuation of this trend. Sitting at the heart of virtually all economic activity, from executing the smallest retail transactions to managing massive global institutional businesses, they play a key role in enabling modern society to function effectively. Read more by Stephen Lindsay, Business Manager, Standards, SWIFT The Importance of Standards