[FSFE PR][EN] Open Letter to EU institutions: Time to support Open Standards

press at fsfeurope.org press at fsfeurope.org
Wed Mar 26 07:36:34 CET 2014

 = Open Letter to EU institutions: Time to support Open Standards =

[ Read online: https://fsfe.org/news/2014/news-20140326-02.en.html ]

In an open letter[1] to the European Parliament and the European
Commission, Free Software Foundation Europe and Open Forum Europe[2] are
asking the European institutions to improve their support for Open
Standards. The letter is directed to Giancarlo Vilella, the president of
the European Parliament's DG ITEC and chair of the Inter-Institutional
Committee for Informatics.

In a recent letter[3] to MEP Amelia Andersdotter, the EC acknowledges
that is is in a state of "effective captivity" to Microsoft. As FSFE has
pointed out repeatedly[4], this is a persistent problem for the
Commission, the Council and the Parliament.

"Recognising a problem is always the first step towards solving it. We
appreciate the Commission's newfound frankness on the subject," says
FSFE's president Karsten Gerloff. "Along with Europe's citizens and the
continent's software industry, we now expect the Commission to take
action and free itself from this captivity."

The letter also raises the issue of video formats. Currently, it is
difficult or impossible for Free Software users to follow the
proceedings of the Parliament and the Council in real time, because the
live video streams of these organisations rely on proprietary
technology. This is a problem which OFE and FSFE have highlighted for
many years.

"This would be a comparatively simple measure for the European
institutions to improve the transparency of their work for ordinary
citizens," says Gerloff. "We fail to understand why there has not been
more progress on this issue over the past six years."

 1. http://fsfe.org/activities/os/2014-03-26.OpenLetterToVilella.en.html
 2. http://openforumeurope.org
 3. https://ameliaandersdotter.eu/sites/default/files/andersdotter_annex.pdf
 4. https://blogs.fsfe.org/gerloff/2011/06/06/the-european-commissions-locked-in-syndrome/

  == About the Free Software Foundation Europe ==

  The Free Software Foundation Europe (FSFE) is a non-profit
  non-governmental organisation active in many European countries and
  involved in many global activities. Access to software determines
  participation in a digital society. To secure equal participation in
  the information age, as well as freedom of competition, the Free
  Software Foundation Europe (FSFE) pursues and is dedicated to the
  furthering of Free Software, defined by the freedoms to use, study,
  modify and copy. Founded in 2001, creating awareness for these issues,
  securing Free Software politically and legally, and giving people
  Freedom by supporting development of Free Software are central issues
  of the FSFE.


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