The FSFE summit

Erik Albers eal at
Tue Jul 12 07:54:09 UTC 2016

Hi Carsten,

On 11.07.2016 11:27, Carsten Agger wrote:
> I'm pleased to see the announcement of the coming FSFE summit
> it's an exciting schedule and I hope I'll be able to attend.

thank you and I hope as well to see you at the summit

> However, and I really don't intend to start any prolonged "editor wars" or
> otherwise engage in lengthy hairsplitting, but a part of me is also unhappy to
> see the term "open source" featuring so prominently in an event sponsored by
> the FSFE.  I do believe RMS is right in his reasons to reject the term, one of
> them being that it is kind of a "business-friendly" way of avoiding the issue
> of freedom.
> We should not endorse the avoidance of the issue of freedom, are my thoughts.
> This should, in my conception, be a defining difference between an event like
> this, organized by the FSFE, and a conference such as FOSDEM, whose aim is
> more general.

Thank you for bringing this up and yes, I can understand your thoughts. As I
am the organiser and author behind I take the blame on me.

Please let me explain my thoughts: I personally prefer and love the most
"Software Libre". This is Spanish and there is no ambiguity with gratis/free,
what makes it very easy to understand for everyone. Unfortunately, most people
in the world speak English and not Spanish, so that term does not help so much
as not so many understand it. Therefore, my choice is "Free Software" because
I like to highlight the 4 Freedoms.

Now if you take a 2nd look on the summit pages you will see that there is 100%
use of Free Software and not a single "Open Source". You only find "Open
Source" in the titles of the talks from external speakers (and just in 4 talks
of approximately 70 talks). But this was their choice not mine or the choice
from FSFE.

Yes, I could have asked them to change their titles. Or I could have even
forced them to change their title. But is this helpful? Who am I or the FSFE
to tell for example Peter Ganten, the chairman of the Open Source Business
Alliance, to not say Open Source? If I put myself in his place, I mean how
would you feel if you are invited and you would be told that you can only give
your presentation if you say "Open Source"?

Both way, I do not think this is helpful. I like the summit to be an event
where we cooperate and find networks and in that we grow our Free Software
movement. And for me, even Open Source is part of the Free Software family.
And although I will not use it myself, who am I to force others not to use it?

That is why I decided: The summit will be 100% Free Software but I will not
force anyone to not use another term - is it Open Source or Software Libre.

Best regards and looking forward,

Imagine no European is any longer forced to use non-free software!

Join the first FSFE summit on September 2nd - 4th:

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