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FSFE makes copyrights computer readable

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The Free Software Foundation Europe (FSFE) is proud to release its next version of our REUSE practices designed to make computers understand software copyrights and licenses.

The REUSE practices help software developers make simple additions to license headers which make it easier for a computer to determine what license applies to the various parts of a programs source code. By following the REUSE practices, software developers can ensure their intent to license software under a particular license is understood and more readily adhered to.

Together with the updated practices, which mostly clarify and make explicit some points, the FSFE is also releasing a set of developer tools and examples which show the REUSE practices in action. Three example repositories, together with an example walkthrough of the process used to make the cURL project REUSE compliant, are complemented with a simple tool to validate whether a program is REUSE compliant.

With our REUSE initiative, we hope to inspire software developers to think about writing copyright and license information -- the metadata of software -- in ways which make them easier to parse programmatically.

says Jonas Öberg, Executive Director of the FSFE.

The new REUSE practices and related documentation and examples can be found on: https://reuse.software.