FSFE Newsletter - April 2012
Free Software Foundation Europe
press at fsfeurope.org
Wed Apr 4 12:26:13 CEST 2012
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= FSFE Newsletter - April 2012 =
[Read online: http://fsfe.org/news/nl/nl-201204.fi.html ]
== Let us end all Free Software "projects" quickly! ==
A "project" is always temporary, in the narrow sense of the term. Some
Free Software people use "project" to refer to long lasting initiatives
instead. Your editor also did this, until Bernhard Reiter convinced him
to use different terms for people, the result they create, and temporary
concerted actions. After several people in FSFE encouraged Bernhard to
write down his thoughts, he now published an article arguing: By
adopting the more widespread use of the term project, Free Software
initiatives will be more successful. "Free Software is here to stay,
prepare your mind for this situation.", writes Bernhard.
== Corporate perk or monopolist bribery? ==
Staff in the European Parliament are facing a challenge to their ethics.
A company is offering all of them a gift which could compromise their
independence. The company in question is Microsoft, and the gift is a
bunch of proprietary programs. Through the Parliament's administration,
Microsoft is offering staff (though probably not MEPs) gratis licenses
to Microsoft Office, Project, and Visio. This happens under the so-
called "Home Use Program".
The staff is working on regulations that also effect Microsoft, who is
now making a gift to them. Staff is usually the one who does all the
legwork. They are the one who control access to our MEPs. FSFE asks the
MEPs to tell their staff, and the staff in their groups, not to accept
Microsoft's gift. On the contrary, they should push the administration
into making Free Software tools available that staffers can use to do
their work, and urge the Parliament itself to migrate to Free Software.
Karsten Gerloff wrote about this in his blogand will closeley monitor
how the MEPs and their staff in the European Parliament will react. We
will keep you posted.
== Help for FSFE from Greece ==
The election period for this year's Fellowship GA seat has ended on
February 29th. To summarise the detailed election results: Our new
Fellowship representative is Nikos Roussos from Greece. He will meet
with other members of FSFE's general assemblyin Lisboa at the end of
April, to work on strategic questions for the coming years. Thanks to
Albert Dengg and Gert Seidl who also stood for the Fellowship GA seat,
and who want to continue their great work for FSFE in their area.
== Something completely different ==
- Digital Restriction Management: In his article"Like candy from a baby:
PS Vita takes freedom from new generation", Sam takes the Sony PS
Vita, as an example how owners of devices are restricted in what they
can do with their computers.
- Guido Günther joined the Debian Project while completing his degree
in physics at the University of Konstanz. He helped with development
of Debian for new processor architectures, and co-initiated Debian’s
Groupware Meetings. He also enjoys contributing to the GNOME project,
and advanced Free Software virtualisation technologies. Read more in
the last Fellowship interview.
- Ask Your Candidates:in Germany, we asked the usual set of
questionsand published the analysis. Compared with the positive
replies in the Berlin election, the Saarland election was a
disappointment. Our press release also resulted in discussionsif
it is "the good right" of companies to restrict the users.
- Fellow Anna Morris was interviewed by the BBC(Audio, starting at
17:13)about a conference that she is organising in London for
women in Free Software. In just a few minutes she discusses what Free
Software is, what it is like being a woman in the Free Software
movement, and how she first got involved.
- FSFE's volunteers and staff have been quite busy with Document Freedom
Dayin the last weeks. We will send out the handcuffsand write
a report what happend all over the world. In the preperation we have
published an article by FSFE co-founder Bernhard Reiter. He
discusses what makes a good data format, and argues that Open
Standards are good, but that we need to push further still. His
central question to data formats is "Can we make it simpler?" The
article is in German, and we are looking for translations.
- FSF announced the Free Software Awards. Big thanks from FSFE to
Free Software hacker Yukihiro Matsumoto and GNU Health.
- Iceland launched a projectto encourage migration of the public
administration to Free Software. Your editor is already looking
forward to a report about this at FSCONSin Gothenburg.
- A selection from the Fellowship planet aggregation:Free Software,
nothing for marketing? And which is the most powerful brand in Free
Software? Timo Jyrinki writes about brands, marketing and technical
- Hugo Roy is organising an event at Sciences Po on 6th April(in
French). Beside others Lawrence Lessig, author of "Code and other laws
of Cyberspace" will talk about "The Character of Cyberlaw Battles".
- Birgit Hüsken explains how to knit the Fellowship plussy.
- Fellow Number 1, Mario Fux, wants to set up a local associationin
Randa, Switzerland to keep the local Free Software activities running.
- And Mirko Böhm writes about about managing trust in mixed commercial
and volunteer Free Software communities.
== Get Active: Leaflets to free others mobile! ==
Our Free Your Androidcampaign, got a lot of attention. Beside
preparing his exams, Torsten Grote gave interviews for the German
newspaper"Die Tageszeitung", radio interviews, and held a first
installation party for FoeBud e.V.. Also at our booth at Cebit,
Chemnitzer Linux-Tage, as well as Augsburger Linuxinfotagea lot
of people showed interest in this campaign. We would like to get more
people involved in this campaign. We ask you to promote the campaign
with leaflets and posters in your local Free Software user group, your
hackerspace, company, university, school, or your favourite bar. Please
write an e-mail with a postal address to fellowship
fsfeurope.org, and we send you some leaflets and posters to promote
34. mailto:fellowship at fsfeurope.org
35. mailto:fellowship at fsfeurope.org
Thanks to all the Fellowsand donorswho enable our work,
Matthias Kirschner- FSFE
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