“We are the FSFE”
Testimonials from our community
FSFE is a charity dedicated to empowering users to control technology. Together with our community we form a movement across Europe to build our digital societies on user's and software freedom. Although there will never be enough space to shed light on all the creative minds and motivated people who helped us to grow our movement to and to live out our mission, we still like to highlight at least some of our priceless community members who in one way or another shaped the FSFE's profile and who helped us to become what we are now.
On this page you find diverse people from within the FSFE community, who are willing to let the world know that they support our mission and reflect what Free Software means to them. All of them left a testimonial, some answered an interview and some even made a video. Enjoy getting to know our community!
PS: if you feel inspired now and you would also like to appear on this page, please get in contact.
The "Public Money - Public Code" campaign, as well as the "REUSE Initiative" made me notice that the FSFE is an organization which supports the same ideals that I do. I want to help them do more great things, and so now I am proud FSFE supporter.
Greg Kroah-Hartman (Linux Kernel Developer)
I hope that more and more people will understand the importance of being ethical in their digital life and thus consciously use Free Software and that we will have more and more volunteers from all over Europe.
Amandine “Cryptie” (Privacy Specialist)
The ultimate book about the Covid-19 plague will describe how Open Standards and Free Software saved civilisation. Government, business, and education only stay operational by going remote. Remoting hundreds of millions is possible only possible through Open Standards with high quality Free Software implementations; ditto building scalable data centres around elastic clouds. There are profound economic, social, even public health learnings here. The continuing mission of FSFE is important to tackle the issues ahead of us.
Andrew Wilson (retired open source strategist)
I was a solitary voice for years, explaining the principles behind Free Software and its importance for people in my country in numerous articles and blog posts. I wanted to belong to an organization with the goal of building the digital society on 100% Free Software, and supporting the FSFE and gaining access to its blogging and fellowship infrastructure seemed like a logical first step.
Carsten Agger (Software Engineer)
If software is licensed as free software, we can audit it, and be sure that it does what it's intended to do (and nothing else). Public institutions develop software, and hire companies to make it, and the citizens should own and reuse all that code. I contribute to Free Software with translations, user help desk, finding free software alternatives at the University... but I cannot reach the policy-makers, nor people and institutions in other countries. I'm fellow to support the FSFE doing this task, and as one more way to say thank you to the free software community.
Laura Arjona Reina (IT Assistant at Technical University of Madrid and Debian contributor)
Software is running the world. All aspects of our life are controlled and steered by software which is running on local devices or somewhere remote, in the cloud. If we want to have an open and democratic society then it is key to have full transparency how this software works. This includes the rights to study it, to change it, to distribute it and run it wherever we want. Free Software is the only concept which ensures these rights. I’m a happy supporter of the Free Software Foundation Europe because the FSFE promotes these values which are so important for our future.
Frank Karlitschek (Founder Free Software company)
I believe that Free Software can help us change our society fundamentally for the better and I believe the best way to do so is together with other volunteers from all over Europe!
Alexandra Busch (IT specialist)
I support the FSFE because it's totally worth it. Its community is strong and very knowledgeable on a wide range of topics, so contributing to its mission is a good way to help the Free Software movement.
Vincent Lequertier (PhD candidate Artificial Intelligence)
I believe Free Software needs a voice at the national as well as the EU level in politics: Software does not exist in an isolated bubble, it's heavily dependent on the ecosystem that it lives in. In my opinion Free Software as well as open standards are key to creating a society that provides equal access.
Isabel Drost-Fromm (Software Engineer and Member of the Apache Software Foundation)
Software is becoming more and more a fabric which permeates our society. We are more and more unaware of the ways in which it influences, sometimes forces our decisions. That's why software freedom concerns fundamentally and very concretely our society. That's why I am convinced that groups like the FSFE are vital for the evolution of a free society.
Tomás Zerolo (Self-employed IT specialist)
I am a strong supporter of the ideas behind Free Software and a daily user of Free Software. I think a voice that explains why Free Software is good for society and what are the conditions under which the Free Software ecosystem can grow is vitally important. By joining FSF and FSFE, I wanted to say thanks to Free Software advocates and developers and help in maintaining political conditions that allow and favor Free Software development and use.
Geza Giedke (Quantum Physics at Donostia International Physics Center)
I'm a supporter of the FSFE as I want to sustain their work to promote Free Software. As a person that uses computers quite heavily every day, I'm very concerned with the current trend of locking down computing which is taking control away from the users. This is increasingly problematic since people's lives are more and more dependent on computers for personal communications, managing finances, employment, etc. Free Software is a necessary requirement for retaining control over your computing.
Mats Sjöberg (Machine learning specialist)
The Free Software Foundation Europe (FSFE) brings together dedicated and engaged activists from all over Europe to seize the opportunities to secure our rights to use, share, study, and improve software because without Free Software, technology subjugates us instead of enhancing our freedom.
Hugo Roy (Lawyer)
Think about these claims:
"It's better if we control how you may or may not use your tools."
"It's better if you don't know how your tools work."
"It's better if we forbid you to share your tools."
"It's better if you are not allowed to improve your tools."
If you find those as absurd as I do, you understand why I'm a Free Software activist.
Bernhard Weitzhofer (Public Servant)
I'm interested in values, politics, society; in new forms of production, based on free co-operation in egalitarian structures; in knowledge commons and collective intelligence. That's why I'm here and why I wish to support the free software movement. I have no technical background, and neither do most of the people I know.
Nicole Lieger (Political Scientist and member of Civil Society)
Free Software has many practical advantages for businesses, education and the public sector, but most importantly it should be considered as a human right. I became a supporter of the FSFE to help make that point - why Free Software is so important for a lively democratic society and for every one of us.
Erik Grun (Economics student)
Nowadays we use social networks, laptops and mobile devices every day. And very frequently we lose the important social and political vision of Free Software in all of them. Thanks to FSFE, FSF and other similar organizations and many local groups, we maintain the torch of a different world where everyone can use and share a lot of programs and code, no matter the country you live in or how much money you can afford to spend on it.
Dani Gutiérrez Porset (Free Software Consultant)
Freedom is one of the core values of our Society and one of the basic concepts of Democracy. Supporting and spreading Free Software is one way to build creative alternatives for social inclusion and to protect our citizens from the digital exploitation. We are responsible to build a better World as a gift for our future generations.
Mauricio Nascimento (Middleware Engineer)
Code is law, as Lawrence Lessig put it. Therefore Free Software and open standards are necessary for human freedom. Our freedom is threatened by patents, copy-prevention schemes, locked-down devices and spying. To counter these threats I support the FSFE's campaigning for open standards, information security and device sovereignty, and against ever more onerous copyright laws.
Björn Persson (Software Engineer)
As a web designer I spend most of my time working on computers. Therefore, usability is very relevant to me. Software vendors often ignore open standards. They deliberately build solutions that only work using their own products. I oppose this greed and take a stand for cooperation. Free Software relies on open standards. This way it enables me to provide a diverse audience with clear and reliable experiences - no matter which software they run. I create media in formats that can be used freely by everyone. By employing Free Software I support independence and help making the world a better place.
Franz Gratzer (vegan freedom activist and Supporter of the FSFE)
Free Software and FSFE is to me: sharing, learning, being independent of monopolies, producing things together, passion and freedom! Since I've been a Supporter, I am finding new friends who help me in Free Software and other topics, teaching new things every day even though we are kilometers away. It is magnificent to be in a community that continually supports my Free Software passion and motivation!
Nermin Canik (IT Business Analyst)
The most fun part about engaging for FSFE is meeting real people and exchanging substantial information about relevant issues. These can be anything from rooting your cell phone, to learning Git, to understanding Free Software based business, to speaking up for the use of open standards in public organisations.
André Ockers (Logistics)
Free Software is important in our time. It needs professional representation which is hard work and expensive. Joining the fellowship meant a way for me to contributing my skills and some money back to the Free Software movement to ensure it's future.
As a Free Software developer and enthusiast, I'm most grateful to the wonderful people at the FSFE for doing all the hard work of campaigning, marketing and representing our shared interests in Brussels and elsewhere. Writing good software is one thing, but getting the word out, countering corporate lobbying, and working towards an environment where Free Software even gets a chance in public sector tenders is equally important. Being a supporter is an excellent way to support the FSFE towards those goals.
Thorsten Behrens (LibreOffice Developer)
In a world where software influences virtually every single aspect of our lives, Free Software is a precondition for a free society.
Reinhard Müller (Software Developer)
I'm very impressed with what the FSFE has achieved on the EU and national level. Back when I was working in the public sector I was able to glimpse the vast amounts of money that are thrown at lobbying for proprietary software and so called industry standards in Germany and the EU. It's astonishing how the FSFE has still managed to get itself heard. That is one of the reasons why I'm supporting the FSFE.
Guido Günther (Freelancer and Debian Developer)
When I read the term "Intellectual Property" I always suspected it to be a "contradictio in adiecto", because only something physical can be possessed, intellectual ideas can not. To get the best benefit out of ideas for all, they should be spread as wide as possible and with as few restrictions as possible. The GNU General Public License seems to be a good example for such little restriction, especially the inheritance principle prevents possible misuse of the idea about Free Software. Following these ideas in an ethical way, for me the FSFE seems to be the very best NGO to be found. And so I support them. And I only found kind people here.
I love the welcoming culture at the FSFE. It feels good to be able to actively work for Free Software in such an unbureaucratic way.
Florian Snow (Software Developer and Instructor)
Freedom is an essential right of human beings, both in physical world and digital world. However there are still many, many people being bounded in the digital world without being aware of it. We truly believe in the value and the human rights of software freedom, which should be without borders. That is exactly why, though not in Europe, we still strongly support the ideas, notions, and campaigns of FSFE.
Franklin Weng (Software Liberty Association Taiwan)
I'm a Free Software supporter for a long time, I fought against software patents in Brussels, co-organised the system theme at the Libre Software Meeting (RMLL) and run a Free Software company. Free Software is an essential part of our global freedom, so it was natural to become a supporter of the FSFE.
Benoit Mortier (Company Owner, Manager of FusionDirectory)
Free Software needs a voice in politics. We volunteers do amazing things together, but some tasks are not that much fun, or are time sensitive or need extensive expertise. FSFE can only tap its full potential with paid staff to do the things the volunteers wouldn't get to. By now, I met all of the staff and can say that I don't regret a cent I've given to allow the FSFE to operate.
Free Software is about empowerment. When I was a student with little money, Linux enabled me to do interesting things with my cheap and old computer where the pre-installed software failed. Since then, my whole education and many achievements would have been impossible had I not been able to experiment, learn, disassemble, reassemble, modify, tweak, and use software the way I wanted. This kind of empowerment needs a strong lobby - the FSFE.
Thomas Kahle (Mathematician)
Every time I use non-free software I end up regretting it, because non-free software's ultimate job is to make money for someone else, not to serve the user. I simplified my personal and professional life by using only Free Software, but that's not enough: no person is an island, and other people's software choices impact me. Supporting the FSFE allows me to combine my voice with many others to let people, corporations, and governments know that Free Software has an important place in everyday life.
Tom Yates (Free Software Consultant Sysadmin)
I became a supporter of the FSFE because I'm seeing more and more that writing free code is ultimately not enough to foster a culture where Free Software is seen as an integral part of society. Free software should not be a fringe topic supported solely by geeks.
Johannes Zarl-Zierl (IT Professional)
What is the biggest benefit of Free Software? Freedom!
Olga Gkotsopoulou (Research Associate)