Upon entering the digital age, in which real and virtual space will
equally determine the social, cultural and scientific development of
mankind, the Free Software Foundation Europe has the long-term goal to
raise and work on the questions this will necessarily raise.
In this regard the direct function is the unselfish promotion of
Free Software as well as creating and propagating the awareness of the
related philosophical and social questions.
As its acknowledged sister organisation, the FSF Europe will join
forces with the Free Software Foundation founded by Richard
M. Stallman in the United States of America. The latter, recognised
tax-exempt charitable organisation in the USA, has been dedicating
itself since 1984 to the promotion and distribution of Free software
and in particular the GNU-System, a Unix-like operating system. This
system is mostly known by one of its variants, GNU/Linux, which since
1993 has been used successfully on many computers.
The term Free Software in the sense of the FSF Europe does not refer
to the price, but rather to the following four freedoms:
This definition of Free Software goes back to the idea of freely
exchanging knowledge and ideas that can traditionally be found in
scientific fields. Like thoughts, software is non-tangible and
duplicable without loss. Passing feeds an evolutionary process,
advancing thoughts and software.
- freedom: the freedom to use a program for any purpose
- freedom: the freedom to study the program and adapt it to your
- freedom: the freedom to make copies for others.
- freedom: the freedom to improve a program and make these
improvements available to others, so that the whole community
Only Free Software preserves the possibility to comprehend and build
upon scientific results. For scientists, it is the only kind of
software which corresponds to the ideals of a free
science. Accordingly, the promotion of free software is also a
promotion of science.
The distribution of information and the forming of an opinion are done
increasingly by digital media, and the trend is to foster the use of
those means for a direct citizen participation to
democracy. Therefore, a central task of the FSF Europe is to train
proficient citizens in these media, thereby promoting democracy.
Digital space (``Cyberspace''), with software as its medium and its
language has an enormous potential for the promotion of all mental and
cultural aspects of mankind. By making it commonly available and
opening up the medium, Free Software grants equal chances and
protection of privacy.
Coining the awareness for the problems related to the digital age in
all parts of society is long-term goal and a core aspect of the work
of the FSF Europe.
Therefore the FSF Europe will seek to increase the use of Free
Software in schools and universities in order to parallelise the
education in real space matters with the creation of understanding and
awareness of problems in virtual space.
Free Software guarantees traceable results and decision-making
processes in science and public life as well as the individual rights
to free development of personality and liberty of opinion. It is the
job of the FSF Europe to carry Free Software into all areas that touch
public life or ``informational human rights'' of citizens.
The association bears the name ``Free Software Foundation Europe -
Chapter (Name of State)'' from now on referred to as ``Chapter
(Name of State).'' Additionally the name ``(Name in local
language)'' can be borne. It is to be registered into the register
of associations; after the registration it leads the additive
``e.V..'' (if necessary)
The association has its seat in (Name of City).
The financial year is the calendar year.
Purpose of the ``Chapter (Name of State)'' is the promotion of
Free Software in order to further free exchange of knowledge, equal
chances of accessing software and public education with regard to the
principles outlined in the preamble.
The goals of the ``Chapter (Name of State)'' are namely to be
- the ideal support of governmental and private organisations in
all aspects of the Free Software,
- the cooperation and coordination with the FSF Europe, which
pursues the same publicly-spirited goals,
- the support of programmers developing Free Software and so
realizing the publicly-spirited goals of the ``Chapter (Name of
State)'' through scholarships,
- the distribution of the philosophical ideals of Free Software,
- the information and training of the general public about the
possibilities and educational potential of Free Software,
- the development and provision of Free Software for the general
The ``Chapter (Name of State)'' pursues exclusively and directly
publicly-spirited purposes in the sense of (insert name of laws
regarding charitable status here). The ``Chapter (Name of
State)'' is working selflessly and does not pursue primarily
Means of the ``Chapter (Name of State)'' may be used for the
statutory purposes only. Members receive no allowances from the funds
of the association. No person may be favored by expenses alien to the
goals of the ``Chapter (Name of State)'' or disproportionally
high. This particularly applies to members working full-time, which
may receive an appropriate compensation for their work.
Any national or foreign natural or legal person that is member of the
Free Software Foundation Europe may become member of the ``Chapter
(Name of State)''. Natural persons must be 16 years old.
Persons under age do not have eligibility for election.
Condition for the acquisition of the membership is a written
application for membership to the executive committee.
The general assembly of the members decides on the application
for membership with three quarters of all members, that are natural
people. The executive committee can grant the application for
membership passing; the application for membership must then be
confirmed by the next members assembly. In case of refusal of the
request no obligation exists to communicate the reasons to the
- with the death of the member with natural persons and/or its
liquidation in the case of legal persons;
- by withdrawal from the association;
- by exclusion from the association.
- by exclusion from the FSF Europe.
The withdrawal is made via written declaration vis-a-vis the executive
committee. The declaration withdrawal must be signed by the competent
legal representative. The withdrawal can be declared at any time.
For important reasons or if the bond of trust between the members is
broken, a member can be excluded by decision of the executive
committee from the association. Before deciding on the matter, the
executive committee must give the member opportunity to state its
position in writing. The decision of the executive committee is to be
justified in writing and sent to the member. The member can appeal the
decision at the general assembly of the members. The appeal must be
lodged within two weeks after communication of the decision at the
executive committee. The executive committee has to call in a general
assembly within three months of punctual insertion of the appointment,
which can support the decision of the executive committee
with a majority of three quarters of the remaining members. Until the
final decision about the exclusion, the member remains suspended of
all obligations and all rights.
Legal means against exclusion from the FSF Europe are determined by
the constitution of the FSF Europe.
The members make contributions by ways of honorary activity or through
holding a position in the association.
The ``FSF Europe - Chapter (Name of State)'' is part of the
Free Software Foundation Europe, a registered charitable association
after German laws. The Free Software Foundation Europe forms a
European federation structure and is divided into national
This constitution is to meet the minimum requirements which are
written down in a constitution-template of the Free Software
Foundation Europe for its national associations in order to preserve
the uniformity in the Free Software Foundation Europe. This applies
with the exception of requirements illegal according to the laws
applied to this constitution. In this case the constitution is to be
modified in such a way that this corresponds as good as possible with
the intentions of the constitution-template.
This constitution requires the acceptance of the FSF Europe before the
``FSF Europe - Chapter (Name of State)'' becomes part of the
The finances of ``Chapter (Name of State)'' are determined by
the financial order decreed in accordance with § 9 sec. 2 of the
constitution of the Free Software Foundation Europe.
The ``Chapter (Name of State)'' can in no case enter obligations
for the FSF Europe.
The ``Chapter (Name of State)'' can only enter negotiations with
authorities and organisations mainly active in the area of (Name
The ``Chapter (Name of State)'' is entitled and obliged to bear
their own name trough which the affiliation with the Free Software
Foundation Europe is expressed. This has to be done by adding the
denomination ``Chapter'' with the name of the state in English to
``Free Software Foundation Europe.'' Additionally it can bear the
name in the national language.
Organs of the ``Chapter (Name of State)'' are:
The executive committee of the ``Chapter (Name of State)''
consists of the Chancellor.
- the executive committee (Chancellor);
- the Vice-Chancellor;
- the extended executive committee;
- the general assembly.
The executive committee is responsibly for all affairs the ``Chapter
(Name of State)'', as far as they are not transferred to another
organ by statute. It has in particular the following tasks:
- Convening and preparation of the general assembly of the members
as well as list the agenda;
- Creation of the annual report;
- Adoption of resolutions over the admission and the exclusion of
- Support of the FSF Europe;
- Agency in judicial and except-court affairs, in particular also
- Relationships with the press.
- Implementation of the FSF Europe guidelines for scholarships of
programmers, who develop Free Software and are scientifically active
by doing so.
The executive committee leads the finances after the finance plan
decreed by the general assembly of the FSF Europe. The finance plan
- that possible profits are used only for the statutory purposes
and that the FSF Europe and ``Chapter (Name of State)''are
- that no member may get no shares of the profits or other
allowances from the means of the FSF Europe or the ``Chapter (Name of State).'' This also applies to separating members.
- that administrative costs, which are alien to the purpose of the
FSF Europe may not be granted. Same applies to disproportionately high
The executive committee is not liable vis-a-vis the association
for slightly negligent behaviour.
The executive committee is elected by the general assembly of the
members for the duration of two years, from the election on. It
continues to be in office up to the new election of the executive
Electable are only members of the association. If the executive
committee separates prematurely, the Vice-Chancellor represents the
association up to the selection of a new executive
committee. Additionally, an extraordinary general assembly of the
members is to be called in within three months by the Vice-Chancellor.
The Vice-Chancellor represents the executive comittee in the following
- Separating of the executive committee;
- Passing indispensability of the executive committee.
The executive committee is indispensable, if he communicates this in
written form to the Vice-Chancellor. The Vice-Chancellor takes care of
all matters as long and to the extent they were transferred to him in
writing by the executive committee. The executive committee is
considered indispensable, if it is not attainable or cannot exercise
its office more than seven days because of illness.
The Vice-Chancellor is elected by the general assembly for the
duration of two years, from the election on. He remains in office up
to the election of the new Vice-Chancellor, however. Only members of
the ``Chapter (Name of State)'' can be elected for Vice-Chancellor.
With the end of membership in the association, the office of the
Vice-Chancellor also ends.
If the Vice-Chancellor is ruled out prematurely, the executive
committee can select a successor for the remaining term of office.
The Vice-Chancellor is not liable vis-a-vis the association for
slightly negligent behaviour.
The extended executive committee consists of the Chancelor and the
The extended committee is resolutionable, if all members are
present in person. Decisions are made unanimously. If no unanimous
can decision be made, the President of the FSF Europe decides.
Members of the extended executive committee are not liable vis-a-vis
the association for slightly negligent behaviour.
The extended executive committee is responsible for the following
- The approval of the statutes of the national associations;
- The execution of the ``Guidelines,'' which are decided on by the
- The execution of the specifications by the FSF Europe, which
take preference over the ``Guidelines'' decided on in accordance with
sec. 2 Nr. 1.
The general assembly
In the general assembly, each member that is a natural person, has a
voice. For the practice of the right to vote another member can be
authorised by written message to the executive committee. The
authorisation is to be given for each general assembly separately. A
member cannot practise the right to vote for more than one third of
The general assembly has exclusive jurisdiction for the following
- Creation of so-called ``Guidelines,'' that are to lead the
activity of the executive committee and extended executive committee;
- Receipt of the annual report of the executive committee;
- Exoneration of the organs;
- Choice and recall of the executive committee and the
The convening of the general assembly
At least once a year, if possible in the first quarter, is the orderly
general assembly to take place; if possible in one of the states, in
which a national association exists. It is called up in writing by the
executive committee under adherence to one period of six weeks under
indication of the agenda. The period begins with day following the
sending of the invitation letter. The invitation letter is to be
considered delivered to the member, if it is addressed to the last
address or e-mail address given by the member in writing. With written
agreement of three quarters of the members, the invitation period can
be shortened to three weeks.
The agenda is derermined by the executive committee. Each member can
request a supplement of the agenda in writing to the executive
committee until at the latest one week before a general assembly. The
executive committee has to announce the supplement at the beginning of
the general assembly. About applications for supplement of the agenda,
which are made at the general assembly, are decided by the general
The executive committee can call up an extraordinary general assembly
at any time. It must be called up, if at least a quarter of all
members require it in writing under indication of the purpose and
reasons to the executive committee. To the extraordinary meeting of
the members the , and apply
Adoption of resolutions of the general assembly
The general assembly is led by the executive committee, at his
indespensability by the Vice-Chancellor.
The type of election is determined by the assembly director. The
election must be carried out in writing, if a third of the members
present in person with the election requests this.
The general assembly is not public.
The general assembly is resolutionable, if it was duly called up and
at least one third of all club members is present or represented by
club members present. In the case of decision inability, the executive
committee is obliged to call up a second general assembly with the
same agenda within four weeks; this general assembly will
resolutionable without consideration of the members present. This is
to be referred to in the invitation.
Unless stated otherwise in the statute, the general assembly passes
decisions with simple majority of the delivered valid voices;
abstentions are therefore left out of the consideration. Changes of
the statute require a majority of three quarters of (the delivered
valid) voices, dissolution of the ``Chapter (Name of State)''
requires four fifths of the voices of all members. Changing the
purpose of the ``Chapter (Name of State)'' can only be decided
unanimously with agreement of the FSF Europe. The written agreement of
the members not present in the general assembly can be explained only
within one month vis-a-vis the executive committee.
In the case of elections it is selected who received more than half of
the delivered valid voices. If nobody received more than half of the
delivered valid voices, a ballot takes place between the two
candidates, who received most of the voices. Is selected then who
received most of the voices. In the case of equal number of votes
once a new choice is necessary; if the mood equality continues to
exist, the lot decides.
Over decisions of the general assembly, a protocol is to be led, that
is to be signed by the recording clerk and the assembly director. It
is to contain the following ascertainments: Place and time of the
assembly, the person of the assembly director and the recording clerk,
the number of members present, the agenda, the individual election
results and the type of the election. For amendments of the statute
the exact wording is to be given.
The dissolution of the ``Chapter (Name of State)'' can only be decided in a general
assembly by the majority in accordance to .
If the general assembly decides nothing else, the executive committee
is the liquidator entitled to act as substitute.
After end of liquidation, existing funds go to the Free Software
Foundation Europe, should the latter have been dissoluted, funds go to
a legal entity of the public right or another tax-privileged
association, which has to use it directly and exclusively in the sense
of this constitution. Resolutions over the future use of the funds may
be executed only after consent of the responsible tax office.
The preceding regulations apply accordingly, if the ``Chapter (Name of State)'' is dissolved for another reason or loses its legal
Writing form is fulfilled if one of the following conditions is met:
Place of jurisdiction for all rights and duties resulting from this
statute is (name of the city the association has its seat in).
- handwritten signed paper document;
- E-mail signed with a key that is sufficiently state of the art.
The FSF Europe decides what is to be regarded as state of the art. The
key must be certified by the FSF Europe.