FSFE summit 2016
September 2nd to 4th
Imagine a European Union that builds its IT infrastructure on Free Software. Imagine European Member States that exchange information in Open Standards and share their software. Imagine municipalities and city councils that benefit from decentralized and collaborative software under free licenses. Imagine no European is any longer forced to use non-Free Software.
From September 2nd to 4th, the FSFE organised its first ever summit to bring together our pan-European community and Fellows for a whole weekend and to discuss contemporary and important issues regarding software freedom. A conference as a gathering, with the potential to build bridges and band together.
The summit in a nutshell
The FSFE summit has been the main event in 2016 to bring together FSFE members and supporters from all over Europe. A conference for our community to share and present their ideas and interests. Sessions and talks have been non-technical and primarily about politics and society. In particular, we have been focusing the sessions of each summit day on one major theme:
A very unique feature of the FSFE summit was that it was again a subconference of another conference, the QtCon. The QtCon, in turn, was a gathering of five subconferences and this way it brought together the communities of Qt, KDAB, KDE, VLC and FSFE under one roof. Means that people who came for the FSFE summit had the chance to use the same venue to also see technical talks for example about Qt or KDE. And vice versa, for example Qt developers had the chance to hear a political talk hosted by the FSFE. The chance to bring our movements together this way, with all its skills, expertise and different levels of activities was a lot of fun. And from the good feedback we got, the effect of bringing our communities together cannot be underestimated.
Crucial part for the FSFE community were the community tracks that have been developed for and by our community. Many FSFE teams used the chance to present themselves and to grow teams or working groups inside the FSFE.
To highlight the efforts and successes of the European Free Software movement, we have been running a Show Europe as part of the FSFE summit. Show Europe was a session for other (national) Free Software related political organisations to present themselves and their work. One idea to help the European Free Software movement to see that we speak with many voices and languages but with the same message.
Special: 15 years of FSFE
In 2016, the FSFE turned 15 years old and we were using the summit to have an official birthday party in cbase, the oldest hackerspace in Berlin. People were invited for Pizza, drinks, chit-chat and music, to get in contact with each other, to revel in the past and to look forward to the future.
Matthias Kirschner, president of FSFE, and Erik Albers, community builder of FSFE, were using the opportunity to run a "local heroes of FSFE" session, in that they have been awarding some of FSFE's local heroes that have been present at the summit - in representation of all those countless volunteers who could not make it.
Schedule, speakers, slides and videos
Friday, September 2nd: Let's talk business
- Hitobito, a Free Software Community Solution for Everybody - André Kunz (video coming soon)
- The POWER is open. How OpenPOWER is changing the game - Georg Greve (slides) (watch the video)
- Free And Open Source Software In Europe: Policies And Implementations - Gijs Hillenius (video coming soon)
- Story telling FOSS - Italo Vignoli (watch the video)
- OPOSSO - free subscription management - Johannes Loxen (video coming soon)
- Strategic use of Free Software at Siemens - Karsten Gerloff (slides) (watch the video)
- CityBikes, data policies and the big elephant - Lluis Esquerda (video coming soon)
- Legal entities for Free Software projects - Stephan Urbach, Simon Phipps, Matija Šuklje, Michiel Leenaars (watch the video)
- How to support activists using Free Software - Michal Czyzewski (video coming soon)
- GPL enforcement in Germany - Miriam Ballhausen (slides) (watch the video)
- Obstacles for Open Source in SMEs - Peter Ganten (watch the video)
- The Purity Law for Honest and Trustworthy Internet Services - Rafael Laguna (watch the video)
- Building a sustainable, impactful and open social business - Regina Sipos (video coming soon)
- The Power to Change - Robert Partyka (watch the video)
- Powering Sales and Marketing with Open Source - Sam Tuke (watch the video)
- Stratosphere Project: Free Software Machine Learning to protect NGOs - Sebastian Garcia (video coming soon)
- Migration of Italian Ministry of Defence - Sonia Montegiove (slides) (video coming soon)
- Free software is now the default choice for the digital transformation - Stefan Richter (watch the video)
- Open Source as a strategic tool - Steffen Evers (watch the video)
Saturday, September 3rd: Community and Politics
- Free communications with Free Software - Daniel Pocock (watch the video)
- Liquid Lobbying - Efficient advocacy for free/open - Dimitar Dimitrov (watch the video)
- Public administrations and FOSS - not always an happy relationship - Karel De Vriendt (slides) (watch the video)
- Public Money, Public Code – Improving the use of Free Software in Public Procurement - Katharina Nocun (watch the video)
- Community guidelines as role model for modern diplomacy - Kristi Progri (watch the video)
- Free Software 1+1: Explaining typical misunderstandings - Matthias Kirschner (watch the video)
- The emergence of governance norms in FLOSS communities - Mirko Boehm (watch the video)
- FSFE IT Infrastructure Presentation and Feedback BoF - Albert Dengg (watch the video)
- Let's enable people to control technology in their own language - André Ockers and Cryptie (watch the video)
- FSFE's edu-team - past, challenges and future - Guido Arnold (slides) (watch the video)
- Fsfe.org Webmaster Q+A - Paul Hänsch (video coming soon)
- Advocacy for Free Software - how we do it? - Polina Malaja (watch the video)
For and by the community:
Sunday, September 4th: Beyond Code
- Design in Free Open Source Projects - Experiences as a design contributor - Elio Qoshi (watch the video)
- Wikidata and your application: Make your software part of the Free Knowledge ecosystem - Lydia Pintscher and Jens Ohlig (slides) (watch the video)
- Women in Open Source - Jona Azizaj (slides) (watch the video)
- Building non-profit Internet access providers with Free Software - Julien Rabier (watch the video)
- Free Software and the Network Effect: fight it or ride it? - Michal Wozniak (watch the video)
- The Future of Search: Maybe Not Web Search? - Michael Christen (watch the video)
- Internet Access is Human Right - Andreas Bräu and Monic Meisel (watch the video)
- The Anthropological Dimension of Free Software: a philosophical argument - Ralf Peter Reinmann (watch the video)
- Software Heritage - the Universal Archive of Free Software - Roberto Di Cosmo (watch the video)
- Free software and computer-aided research - Tobias Schrank (watch the video)
- Source code availability: beyond user freedom - Walter Van Holst (watch the video)
- After the summit is before the summit? - Erik Albers and Cellini Bedi (video coming soon)
- Plussy Display - An FSFE Booth Attractor - Christian Carlowitz (slides) (watch the video)
- FSFE Wiki Caretakers - Johanes Zarl-Zierl (slides) (watch the video)
- Zerocat chipflasher - open hardware DIY with the Parallax Propeller - Kai Mertens (watch the video)
- Free Software and RepRap 3D printers - Marco Calegaro (watch the video)
- Freedomvote - Bring Ask your Candidates to the web - Simon Wächter (slides) (watch the video)
- SHOW EUROPE - To promote national Free Software organizations in Europe (watch the video)
For and by the community:
Last but not least our keynote speaker Julia Reda, member of the EU Parliament for the Pirate Party, about how "Proprietary Software threatens Democracy"
Feedback and lessons learned
The overall feedback from the participants of the very first FSFE summit was overwhelming good. People loved the idea of having multiple communities and subconferences under one roof. People were complaining that the registration process was kind of unintuitive and uninformative, but we received good feedback for the organisation at the actual venue and that everything went very smooth. Finally, addressing the topic of running business with Free Software was also very well received by a lot of attendees.
Sure, there also have been lessons that we learned. Problematic was one talk that was partly advertising non-free software. Be assured this is a no go for a FSFE summit, but the speaker did not mention it in his application. Also we heard a couple of times that attendees would love to have a symbol, a button, a sticker or anything else to recognise each other. So people can see who is here for the FSFE community and who is here for the KDE community, for example. Finally, the number of tracks and talks seem to have been at a limit for participants to not get flooded by too much information. Be assured, we will take your feedback into account for the preparations of a possible next summit.
Press and media
Here are some of the blogs that have talk about the Summit:
- Florian Snows blogs about his participation at the FSFE Summit.
- Guido Arnold, also blogged about his experience at the FSFE summit.
- André Ockers wrote about his participation in the first FSFE Summit and 15th anniversary celebration.
- Daniel Pocock covers his participation and experience at the FSFE Summit.
- Erik Albers looks back on organising the first FSFE summit.
The FSFE Summit in the Press
Some press articles about the FSFE summit:
- [EN] by Paul Brown, Opensource.com, First ever FSFE Summit celebrates free software successes. In the article Brown writes about the different activities of the Summit and highlights the work of our organization prior to its 15th anniversary.
- [EN] by Swapnil Bhartiya, CIO, The Free Software Foundation Europe Organizes its First ever Summit in Berlin.
- [EN] by Gijs Hillenius, Joinup, MEP: publicly-funded software should be public. Reflects the participation of Julia Reda, member of the European Parliament, at the FSFE's Summit.
- [DE] Kristian Kißling, Linux Magazine, Erste Qtcon in Berlin. The article describes the different events and organizations that participated at this year’s Qtcon.
- [DE] by Stefan Krempl, Heise Online, Free Software Summit: "Reinheitsgebot" für Online-Dienste. Krempl's article covers some of the main topics of the FSFE's Summit.
- [DE] by Stefan Krempl, Heise Online, Free Software Summit: Kampagne für "öffentliche Software" in der Verwaltung In his article, Stefan Krempl, highlights the talks of the Summit that were related to Free Software and Public Administration.
- [DE] by Fabian Köhler, Neues Deutschland, Die Software, die Steve Ballmer hasste.
- [DE] by Fabian Köhler, Neues Deutschland, Die Grenzen der Freiheit.
Radio interview with Executive Director of the FSFE Jonas Öberg (since 40:00).