[FSFE PR][FR] Germany: 100 days of coalition agreement - hardly one day for Free Software

press at fsfe.org press at fsfe.org
Tue Mar 15 11:39:14 UTC 2022

 = Germany: 100 days of coalition agreement - hardly one day for Free Software =

[ Version en ligne: https://fsfe.org/news/2022/news-20220315-01.fr.html ]

At the end of the week, the new German government will have been in
office for 100 days. The coalition agreement contains ambitious
statements on the use of Free Software (also known as Open Source), but
so far nothing has been implemented. On the contrary: dependencies are
to be further cemented.

Just 100 days ago, the new government set out to finally drive forward
the digitisation of Germany. Fortunately the use of Free Software is to
play a major role. The FSFE has been demanding for a long time: "Public
Money? Public Code!" - an implementation of the principle finally seems

Free Software gives everyone the right to use, study, share, and improve
applications for any purpose. These freedoms mean that similar
applications do not have to be programmed from scratch every time, and
thanks to transparent processes, others do not have to reinvent the
wheel. For large projects expertise and costs can be shared, and
applications paid for by the public are available to all. This promotes
innovation and saves money in the medium to long term. Dependencies on
vendors is minimised and security issues can be fixed more easily.

/Alexander Sander, the FSFE's Policy Consultant, explains: "Although the
benefits of Free Software are obvious and are also recognised in the
coalition treaty, the new government has so far only been conspicuous by
inactivity and cementing the status quo. Instead of finally providing a
'Free Software cloud' for administrations, the new government will again
rely on costly proprietary applications. This is incomprehensible to
us."/  SAP and Arvato, for example, want to offer Microsoft products to
German administrations and the new government is open to this. The cloud
strategy based on "open interfaces as well as strict security and
transparency requirements", which was still mentioned in the coalition
treaty, is thus moving further and further away.

Apart from a vague announcement by Franziska Brantner, State Secretary
in the Federal Ministry of Economics and Climate Protection, "to promote
open source technologies from 2022 onwards" nothing happened so far. It
remains unclear what budget is available for this activity, how these
technologies will be identified and promoted, and how stakeholders will
be integrated into the process, especially civil society.

The Minister of the Interior, Nancy Faeser, who is supposed to push the
topic of digitisation for administrations, has so far remained reserved,
as has the chancellor. Although "much more speed" is to be made, how
this is to happen in concrete terms remains nebulous and Free Software
has not played a role so far.

  == About the Free Software Foundation Europe ==

  Free Software Foundation Europe is a charity that empowers users to
  control technology. Software is deeply involved in all aspects of our
  lives; and it is important that this technology empowers rather than
  restricts us. Free Software gives everybody the rights to use,
  understand, adapt and share software. These rights help support other
  fundamental freedoms like freedom of speech, press and privacy.

  The FSFE helps individuals and organisations understand how Free
  Software contributes to freedom, transparency and self-determination. We
  enhance users' rights by abolishing barriers to Free Software adoption,
  encourage people to use and develop Free Software, and provide resources
  to enable everyone to further promote Free Software in Europe.


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