FSFE Newsletter - June 2009

Free Software Foundation Europe press at fsfeurope.org
Thu Jul 9 14:15:42 UTC 2009

Free Software Foundation Europe (FSFE) Newsletter - June 2009

June has definitely been a thrilling month. Besides our ongoing
activities with Fellowship meetings, participations to events such as
the LinuxTag in Berlin, most of our energy and attention were directed
at the General Assembly (GA) held in Miraflores de la Sierra.

This has been an important event for our organisation since, for the
first time, it included a representative of the Fellowship; it
presented our new Spanish team and gave the chance for community
building during the social event, but more importantly, it put in
place our new Executive Team!

Read on to get to know them!

					Giacomo Poderi

1. FSFE participates at "LinuxTag 2009", Berlin, 24-27 June
2. Social event and presentation of Spanish team, Miraflores de la Sierra, Spain, 20 June
3. The account from the first Fellowship representative at the GA
4. Two year Executive Summary (2007-2009)
5. Fellowship meeting in Berlin, 11 June
6. It's time for the community to take charge of its brand


7. The new Executive Team appointed at FSFE's General Assembly 2009


8. Introducing the translators team


9. FSFE booth at RMLL Nantes, France, 07-11 July
10. Fellowship Meeting in Berlin, 09 July

1. FSFE participates at "LinuxTag 2009", Berlin, 24-27 June

We participated with a booth at the "LinuxTag", in Berlin, as in the
years before. The event took place at Berlin's Expo Center from 24-27
June, and attracted about 10,000 visitors interested in Free Software at
all kind of levels, 135 exhibitors and about 300 speakers. This year,
our booth was coordinated by Lena Simon and Matthias Kirschner with the
valuable help of 12 volunteers, who manned it over the four days event.
This year our booth included some novelties such as brand new
pdfreaders.org leaflets, an introductory comic strip to the Fellowship
and the alpha version of a booth game named "GNUstav the GNU". Read more
about it on Matthias' and Torsten's blog posts:


2. Social event and presentation of Spanish team, Miraflores de la Sierra, Spain, 20 June

On Saturday 20 June, after a public presentation of our Spanish team,
all General Assembly (GA) members, Fellows and friends were invited to
the "compile your own"-Cocktail-Party.  Roughly 30 people adapted the
four basic principles of Free Software to the art of cocktail
mixing. The raw materials were deployed at La Cristalera and the party
people were provided with the source code of various cocktails. This
social event was a valuable chance for community building and
strengthen of personal ties amongst colleagues and friends.


3. The account from the first Fellowship representative at the GA

Torsten Grote is the first Fellow elected to represent the Fellowship
at FSFE's GA. In Miraflores de la Sierra, he had the chance to
participate in high level decision-making process within the
organisation. He has already reported with an e-mail to all Fellows, his
views on the experience. Torsten said, "I was surprised how much influence
I had on the decisions that were made". He continues "My concerns and
proposals were not treated differently from the ones of any other member.
This way I had considerable influence on all the decisions made and was
able to check if the executive team does and will do its job properly."
Torsten will keep his blog up to date to include more coverage on the GA.
Don't miss it!


4. Two year Executive Summary (2007-2009)

In preparation of the General Assembly (GA) of this year, Georg Greve,
former FSFE's President, drafted the biennial executive summary on the
work of the organisation, which is now available on-line. The document
summarises the cornerstone activities in various areas such as the
Microsoft Antitrust Case, open standards, the United Nations and the
legal work of the Freedom Task Force. The Executive Summary is a good
resource to understand the current changes and further directions of
our organisation.


5. Fellowship meeting in Berlin, 11 June

The Fellowship group of Berlin met on 11 June in the Newthinking Store
at Tucholskystraße 48. At the meeting, Sabine Stengel from Cartogis
gave a talk about OpenStreetMap, which was followed by an inspiring
discussion. The preparation for the LinuxTag was another main topic of
the evening.  Torsten answered Fellows' questions about his new role
as representative at the GA. About 25 Fellows and interested guests
participated in the two hours official meeting, and also joined for a
more informal social gathering at the pub.


6. It's time for the community to take charge of its brand

As the terms "Free Software" and "Open Source" are becoming more and
more mainstream we are seeing many companies that want to 'jump on the
bandwagon', branding anything they produce as Free or Open Source
Software. However, it often happens that the mixed models they want to
sell are far from what we would call Free Software. Georg published a
concise post with the title "It's time for the community to take
charge of its brand", which focuses on current corporate practices of
mixing models and depriving the community of their meaning and
understanding of Free Software.



7. The new Executive Team appointed at FSFE's General Assembly 2009

Our yearly GA meeting was held in Miraflores de la Sierra, Spain, on
19-21 June. It brought about a lot of changes.  Torsten in the role of
first Fellowship's representative was there, our Spanish team, who
hosted and organised the meeting, was formally presented and, most
exciting, the new Executive Team was deliberated upon and formally set
it up.

Karsten Gerloff, Fernanda Weiden, Christian Holz, Adrian de Groot,
Matthias Kirschner and Reinhard Müller are the people who will lead
FSFE for the coming years. They are, respectively, our new President,
Vice-President, Executive Director, FTF coordinator, Fellowship
coordinator and Financial Officer. Georg Greve, who founded the
organisation together with others and chaired it during the past eight
years says about the new team: "There is no doubt in my mind that
these extraordinary people are a dream team to ensure both continuity
and change towards a better, larger, and more successful FSFE."

The new Executive Team is well aware of the capabilities of the
organisation and will work to strengthen it even further. Karsten,
FSFE's new President, says: "Georg Greve and his team have done
splendid work over the past eight years, building FSFE out of nothing
into an organisation that is highly respected and trusted as an expert
group on Free Software, and as a reliable partner in policy making and
negotiations." Fernanda, FSFE's Vice-President, continues: "The people
in this organisation have a deep understanding not only of technology
itself, but also of its social and political aspects.  Together, we
can continue to develop cutting-edge thinking on how we as a society
handle knowledge, and how we can best make the most of technology."

More information about the new team and how to contact them can be
found here:


Relevant links:


8. Introducing the translators team

The international reach of our organisation demands that our information
and documents are available in as many languages as possible. Five years
ago we decided to give space for a flexible, responsive, and well
coordinated translator team to grow. The decision has paid off extremely
well. As of today, most of the content on http://fsfe.org is available
in 27 languages. Thanks to our volunteers for their excellent job!



9. FSFE booth at RMLL Nantes, France, 07-11 July

The 10th RMLL, "Rencontre Mondial de Logiciel Libre" (LSM, Libre
Software Meeting) is taking place at Nantes. Rainer Kersten will
organise a FSFE booth there. RMLL is the most important Free Software
event in France and some 5000 visitors are expected.
Whoever would like to come and help is highly welcome. To coordinate,
please contact:

 dus < AT > office < DOT > fsfeurope < DOT > org

10. Fellowship Meeting in Berlin, 09 July

The local Berlin Fellowship group will meet on 9 July at 7.30 pm at
the Newthinking Store, in Tucholskystraße 48. This time there will be
a discussion with representatives from political party youth
organisations about Free Software. As always, guests are welcome to


You can find a list of all FSFE newsletters on

You can join the Fellowship or find how to support us on

You can order our merchandise at

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