FSFE Newsletter - February 2011

press at fsfeurope.org press at fsfeurope.org
Fri Feb 4 19:07:13 CET 2011

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= FSFE Newsletter - February 2011 =

[Permanent URL: http://fsfe.org/news/nl/nl-201102.en.html ]

== Drop a container to free web videos ==

Videos on the internet often prove to be literal nuisance to Free Software
users. Several websites required the non-free flash video plugin to view
videos. Perhaps also your friends were wondering why you are not able to
watch youtube videos within your web browser, and thought you are a freak
when you started downloading videos with youtube-dl[1] . With gnash[2]
and other programs which are able to play flash video directly the
situation improved. But flash is still a pain annoying both for Free
Software users and developers.

1. http://rg3.github.com/youtube-dl/
2. http://www.gnu.org/software/gnash/

Developing HTML5 turned out to be a chance to purge this problem. It
enables the user to play audio and video directly in your web browser. But
there was disagreement which video container format should be used: H.264,
WebM[3] or Ogg Theora[4] ? MPEG LA organisation requires developers who
implement H.264 to agree to a patent license which is incompatible with
Free Software. So we might have ended up depending on non-free software
again to watch web videos.

3. http://www.webmproject.org/
4. http://www.theora.org/

But now Google[5] announced to suspend support for patent-encumbered
codec H.264 and support free codecs only instead. Being the biggest
provider of web videos Google's decision is a huge step to dispose of non-
free video software. Our sister organisation FSF issued a press release on
this topic[6] and I (Matthias) was interviewed by Dradio Wissen[7] about
it (in German).

5. http://blog.chromium.org/2011/01/html-video-codec-support-in-chrome.html
6. http://www.fsf.org/news/supporting-webm
7. http://blogs.fsfe.org/mk/?p=719

Now time has come to help adopt WebM as free video format: get in contact
with website operators and ask them to distribute videos in the WebM
format to get rid of H.264.

== New clothes for FSFE ==

For many people their first contact with FSFE is via website. After months
of work by FSFE's Web Team[8] a new website design has been launched
including a fresh look, improved infrastructure, and new features. Here is
a list of our new features:

8. http://fsfe.org/contribute/web/web.en.html

- iCal feed[9] of FSFE events and activities
- Option to subscribe to FSFE newsletters[10] in multiple languages
- Tagging of news and events, allowing dynamic generation of information
  feeds for specific topics (useful for country pages, and topic homepages
  such as "EU News"); documentation added[11]
- Improved country teams contact page[12] , including more information and
  links to team member profiles
- Improved people page[13] with avatars of team members
- New meta-data storage and display system for published articles[14] which
  consistently presents important article information

9. webcal://fsfe.org/events/events.en.ics
10. http://fsfe.org/news/newsletter.en.html
11. http://fsfe.org/contribute/web/tagging.en.html
12. http://fsfe.org/contact/local.en.html
13. http://fsfe.org/about/team.en.html
14. http://fsfe.org/projects/os/eifv2.en.html

== Something completely different ==

- We have written to German competition authorities in order to share our
  concern about the sale of Novell's patents to a consortium called CPTN
  made up of Microsoft, Oracle, Apple and EMC. Read the details in our
  press release[15] and Karsten's blog article[16] .
- Fellowship Election for GA seat: In February Fellows may choose their
  candidate for the Fellowship seat in FSFE's General Assembly. Check out
  the candidates[17] and choose your candidate. If you are not a Fellow yet
  join now[18] , and you can pick your choice, too.
- Fellowship interview: Political veteran Anne Østergaard discusses[19]
  new ways to influence European legislation, the scale of Free Software
  support in developing countries, and the importance of local culture in
  community campaigning.
- There is a lot of good things to read[20] . Patents are definetely not
  something you'll enjoy. If this warning doesn't keep you from reading
  them, Matija wrote a blog article "Reading patents made easier?"[21] .
- Do you want some fries together with FSFE? Like every year we will have
  a strong booth presence at FOSDEM[22] with several volunteers, project
  coordinators, our president and vice-president. We are looking forward
  to having discussions at our booth after Karsten's[23] and my
  presentation[24] as well as while eating fries, or having a beer with
- Links on Free Software and Law; FTF team member Matija started
  publishing legal news on Free Software: Free Software & law related
  links[25] ( part 2[26] ).
- You can do a lot of (nice ;) ) things with handcuffs: Richard wrote
  about practical advantages[27] of not being handcuffed in your daily

15. http://fsfe.org/news/2011/news-20110113-02.en.html
17. http://wiki.fsfe.org/election11
18. http://fellowship.fsfe.org/join
19. http://blogs.fsfe.org/fellowship-interviews/?p=233
20. http://blogs.fsfe.org/mk/?p=399
21. http://matija.suklje.name/?q=node/220
22. http://www.fosdem.org/2011/
23. http://www.fosdem.org/2011/schedule/event/powerfreedomsoftware
24. http://www.fosdem.org/2011/schedule/event/nonfreeadvertisement
25. http://matija.suklje.name/?q=node/214
26. http://matija.suklje.name/?q=node/218
27. http://www.gnu.org/philosophy/practical.html

== Get active - Join the Web Team ==

FSFE's Web Team needs help! We need new ideas and suggestions as well as
developers, designers[28] , and translators[29] to improve fsfe.org even

28. http://fsfe.org/contribute/designers/designers.en.html
29. http://fsfe.org/contribute/translators/translators.en.html

- Sign up to the Web Team's mailing-list[30] to read discussion about
  current and future changes, and submit your own queries and comments
- Submit bugs with the website to the Web issue tracker[31] (you can
  create a new account, and remember your usename will end in -guest)
- Ask questions in real time in the Web Team's IRC channel: #fsfe-web[32]
  on freenode

30. http://mail.fsfeurope.org/mailman/listinfo/web
31. https://trac.fsfe.org/fsfe-web
32. irc://irc.freenode.net/fsfe-web

Matthias Kirschner - FSFE

Free Software Foundation Europe <http://www.fsfe.org>
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