FSFE Newsletter – July 2014
press at fsfeurope.org
press at fsfeurope.org
Fri Jul 4 15:06:50 CEST 2014
= FSFE Newsletter – July 2014 =
[ Read online: https://fsfe.org/news/nl/nl-201407.fi.html ]
== Privacy café: e-mail encryption as the main course! ==
Imagine you take some friends to a café, but instead of hot and cold
beverages, the menu features information on measures of ensuring digital
privacy. Like "https everywhere" as a starter, "GnuPG e-mail encryption"
for the main course, and "tosdr.org" (information about terms of
services) as dessert. Such cafés already exist in the Netherlands. At
the German speaking FSFE meeting in Essen, Felix Stegerman, our Deputy
Coordinator Netherlands, presented his plans to set up more privacy
cafés and why he thinks it is the right time and a good opportunity for
Free Software to do so in other places as well.
The reason is that most of the people that go to a privacy café are
already aware of issues around privacy and freedom. But it gives local
volunteers a good opportunity to talk about Free Software, and the
importance of using Free Software for privacy issues. For example, by
asking the participants "who controls the software?" Read Felix's blog
post for more details about the cafés and future plans.
== E-mail self-defence goes multilingual ==
Good information material about encryption and Free Software is crucial
for the privacy cafés just mentioned. Fortunately, our sister
organisation, the FSF, published the e-mail self-defence guide and
volunteers translated the guide and the infographic in 6 other
languages: English, German, Brazilian Portuguese, French, Russian,
Turkish, and Japanese. This guide explains the installation of the
necessary programs for e-mail encryption under GNU/Linux, MacOS, and
Microsoft Windows as well as the key generation, the web of trust and
the usage of those programs. All you need is a computer with an Internet
connection, an email account, and about half an hour. For information
how you can help to spread information about e-mail self-defence, see
this edition's "get active" section.
== What to use instead of WhatsApp and Threema? ==
"How can I encrypt my e-mail" was one of the most common questions we
received in the last months. Thanks to the e-mail self-defence guide we
now have a good answer. Another questions about encryption and privacy
we were asked frequently was: "is there a secure and free WhatsApp
WhatsApp is a messaging program for mobiles that allows you to send
(text) messages free-of-charge. After WhatsApp's recent acquisition by
Facebook and in the face of the NSA revelations, many WhatsApp users are
looking for secure and trustworthy alternatives.
Because this effects so many people, we at the Free Software Foundation
Europe would like to be able to promote an alternative that respects
your freedom and privacy. Therefore we decided to do some research and
to hold a workshop on WhatsApp alternatives during our latest FSFE team
meeting in Essen. Hannes Hauswedell and Torsten Grote summarised the
== Something completely different ==
- Local group activities: FSFE had professional outdoor booths at the
vegan summer festival in Vienna, as well as at Corso Leopold in
Munich. At the Free Software meeting in Athens FSFE's our local
group discussed how to build your own home server. Nikos Roussos
documented how to setup a home server with Fedora and Beagle Bone
Black. Our local group in Frankfurt focused on crypto topics,
and Hugo Roy, coordinator of local group in Paris, gave a talk at the
local Ubuntu party.
- "Free Software needs a strong community. If we fail to attract
everyone willing to work for Free Software, we’re shooting ourselves
in the foot." wrote Karsten Gerloff in his blog post "Four social
rules for a 'No Asshole Zone'". Our local group coordinators have a
similar discussion, and started with a code of conduct for FSFE's
discussions. We are interested in your feedback on the pad.
- The Free Software community now has 33 supporters in the European
Parliament. All of them signed the Free Software pact for the European
elections, and we are sure there will be times in which we will
remind them of the promise they have given, and ask them to support
- Our president Karsten Gerloff was delivering a keynote at the European
Christian Internet Conference. Afterwards he was asked by a pastor
to comment on a draft strategy to move the churches in his region
towards Free Software, which Karsten did.
- From 7 to 8 June 2014 Fundația Ceata, an associated organisation of
FSFE, organised the second Coliberator conference in Bucharest. At the
first edition FSFE president Karsten Gerloff gave the keynote, and at
this edition it was the Richard Stallman, president of FSF. The first
batch of talks are already published on the conference's website.
- Guido Arnold provides the news from Free Software in education - May
- Public administration: Joinup reports that the complexity of
proprietary software licences is encouraging the uptake of Free
Software in the Greater London Authority, that the Extremadura
health care has switched to Free Software, and that the German
city of Leipzig already migrated 2792 of the city's 4300 workstations
to the Free Software office suites Apache OpenOffice and
LibreOffice. They expect "that in the first five years the
anticipated savings will be swallowed by the exit costs associated
with the proprietary software used by the city."
- From the planet aggregation:
- More female speakers at the conference and ATMs running GNU/Linux.
Torsten was giving a talk about Free Your Android at FISL in
- Under the slogan "your data at the intelligence services" the
German Humanistische Union organised a "blog parade", asking
organisations to participate with a blog post. Erik Albers wrote a
post "Protection against surveillance through encryption with Free
Software" (in German).
- The Randa Meetings, a collection of sprints that make KDE software
better needs your help for this year's edition. Mario Fux asks
everyone to spread the word, help, donate and/or support them.
- Hugo Roy lists some "awesome tools" he uses but are little
- Bdale Garbee wrote about TeleGPS, an easy-to-use tracking-only
board providing GPS location.
- Photography: Hannes started to publish a photo of the month,
edited with the Free Software Darktable, and Paul Boddie explains
how he was tuning digiKam’s picture previews.
- Björn Schießle describes how to integrate the todo list software
"ToDo.txt" into Claws Mail.
- Former FSFE employee Sam Tuke explains how to backup multiple
e-mail accounts automatically on GNU/Linux.
== Get active: Spread the e-mail self-defence guide! ==
The FSF's e-mail self-defence guide and the corresponding
infographic is good material to explain e-mail encryption to wider
audience. For some time now FSFE ships Free Software information
materials to activists. Beside general information about Free
Software, Open Standards, Digital Restrictions Management, or F-Droid,
we would like to distribute the infographic in future.
Before we print a larger amount and ship it to our local groups and
other activists around Europe, we would like you to test the
infographics with friends, family and colleagues. Try to find out if
they have problems understanding some parts and use our public
discussion lists, so that we--together with our sister organisation
--can modify them if necessary.
Thanks to all the volunteers, Fellows and corporate donors
who enable our work,
Matthias Kirschner - FSFE
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