Legal Support Activities
As a non-profit, non-governmental organisation, Free Software Foundation Europe works to create general understanding and support for Free Software and Open Standards. The following activities are concrete actions that we take in the areas of public awareness, policy advocacy and legal support.
Since its foundation in 2001, the FSFE has been working every single day to further Free Software in Europe and beyond. With our concrete activities, based upon the three pillars of our work, we focus on protecting and extending user rights. Some of our actions run for many years, some are aimed at short-term developments, but all are part of our mission: empower users to control technology.
Another major part of our work consists of continuous engagement and background work. We are present at dozens of conferences per year, support and maintain an excellent community and provide it with helpful resources. Furthermore, we are a prominent contact point for all questions and enquiries around software freedom, Open Standards, and user rights. We also provide basic education resources on Free Software legal and licensing issues.
The FSFE is running a project to make licensing easy for humans and machines alike. It solves a fundamental issue that Free Software licensing has at the very source: what license is a file licensed under, and who owns the copyright? REUSE provides easy recommendations in three steps that help users, developers and legal professionals.
The Legal Network is a neutral, non-partisan, group of experts in different fields involved in Free Software legal issues. Currently the Legal Network has several hundreds of participants from different legal systems, academic backgrounds and affiliations. The aim of the Legal Network is to promote discussion and foster better knowledge of the legal constructs that back Free Software. The conversations on the Legal Network are intended to be dynamic, thought-provoking and up to speed with the most recent developments. Since 2007, we have been conducting the annual Legal and Licencing Workshop (LLW) which has become the world’s foremost gathering of lawyers, technologists, and thought leaders on Free Software legal and licensing topics in an informal and confidential atmosphere.
The FSFE’s Licence Questions mailing list is our group of volunteers dedicated to provide help with Free Software licences and compliance. If you need advice on what Free Software licence you should use, or if you want to know more about what rights you have over a piece of Free Software, you can contact us.
The FSFE is working with 9 European organizations to promote and raise awareness about the importance of Free Software, Open Data, and Open Hardware among academia, business, industry, and innovation supporting organizations. As a big part of our work with the ZOOOM Initiative, we are promoting the REUSE specification as an important element for licensing compliance.
The FSFE is a partner organisation of NGI, a coalition of various not-for-profit organisations from across Europe. Funded by the European Commmission, NGI provides grants to individual researchers and developers, as well as teams that wish to work on new ideas and technologies that contribute to the establishment of the Next Generation Internet. The FSFE provides legal support for projects that improve openness, inclusivity, transparency, privacy, cooperation, and protection of data.