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From July 6-11, 2013, several thousand people will come to Brussels from all over Europe to participate in the Libre Software meeting (RMLL), one of Europe's largest conferences for Free Software developers, technology entrepreneurs and civil society activists.

Monday, July 8: Hugo Roy, Towards usage restrictions into HTML?

France Coordinator Hugo Roy will present the latest developments in the fight against DRM in HTML5.

Language of the talk: English
Location: Université Libre de Bruxelles, Room H 1301
Date and time: Monday, July 8, 10:00


For a year, Microsoft, Google and Netflix have been working together to propose a new standard: Encrypted Media Extensions. This specification envisions to have encrypted media elements, such as videos, dealt with so-called ’Content Decryption Modules (CDM)’ responsible for authenticating a user session with a remote content server and for decrypting the media served up by the server. The CDM, outside of the specification itself, will then enable Digital Restrictions Management (DRM) as an add-on in the web browser, or directly provided by the non-free operating system. Indeed, ChromeOS already ships with Google’s CDM/DRM.

The W3C has agreed that “content protection” to be a valid requirement. But what does that mean? Why has the W3C agreed to publish the specification as a first public working draft on May 2013? What’s going on there and what can we do to help fight DRM in HTML?

After a quick recap of the specification that anybody could understand, this talk will address some of the pitfalls of the proposal and address possible solutions to fix this and keep DRM out of our web browsers.

Monday, July 8: Karsten Gerloff at the RMLL's General Public Conference

President Karsten Gerloff will present his talk All watched over by machines of loving grace.

Language of the talk: English
Location: Université Libre de Bruxelles, Room K.1.105
Date and time: Monday, July 8, 11:00-12:00


Computers are woven into the fabric of our daily lives. They are the machines we use to create knowledge, they let us talk and write to each other, they are in the cars, trains and planes that we use to move around.

Computers are so tremendously useful because they are general purpose machines. We routinely use them to create and do things that the people who built them never dreamed of.

Yet we are in the middle of an intense battle for control of these computers. Corporations are busy turning general purpose computers into mere shopping devices. Instead of choosing our destiny, we only get to choose our masters.

It doesn’t have to be this way. Are we heading for a world of corporate surveillance, where our choices will be bought and sold? Or are we going to create a world where we live in freedom and take charge of our lives?

Monday, July 8: Werner Koch, Privacy 2013 : Why. When. How.

FSFE Team Member Werner Koch will present a talk about privacy.


In ever shorter intervals we learn about new privacy threats. The reason for this flood of bad news is not due to technical failures or more investigative journalism but due to the sheer amount of data conveyed through the internet and solely under corporate or governmental control.

With more data collections most of that data will inevitable leak. With the old decentralized internet, this was not too much of a problem because, well, the net was decentralized by design. Economic interests have increasingly shifted this infrastructure into an oligarchy of data processing centers, each with hundreds of millions of users. Today they are central to the internet and thus are a single point of privacy failure. Users capable of reading the privacy policies should be aware of this problem, but they nevertheless close their eyes and take advantage of the promises of such aggregated data (known as “social networks”). The dangers of improper use of such data aggregation services is not instantly seen but may surface only a few years later. As if this weren’t bad enough, every year we have to notice that governments are interested in that data, and details leak every few years out of huge systems for global surveillance.

It is not anymore too far fetched to claim that we are now living in a surveillance world.

This talk explains reasons to take care of your data, examines real world privacy threats, and suggest ways to reconquer privacy: Using TOR for anonymity, Jabber with OTR for instant messaging, your own cloud for storing personal information, YaCy or DDG as alternative search engines, end-to-end encryption for email, and finally to prefer free software over likely backdoored non-free software.

Discussion panel on Technology Power and Freedom

On July 9 FSFE organises a discussion panel on Technology, Power and Freedom with some of the world's foremost advocates of digital freedom and leading members of the European Parliament (MEP) on digital issues.

Participants will be Karsten Gerloff (FSFE), Eben Moglen (Columbia University), Judith Sargentini (MEP Greens/EFA), Christel Schaldemose (MEP S&D -tbc), Richard M Stallman (FSF), Nils Torvalds (MEP ALDE), Ioannis A. Tsoukalas (MEP EPP).

Language of the discussion: English
Location: Université Libre de Bruxelles, Room K.1.105
Date and time: Tuesday July the 9th, 11:00-12:20


As lawmakers are grappling with the multitude of changes brought about by technology and the Internet, they often face pressure to restrict the potential of the Internet in the name of security. Digital activists are attacking censorship, building distributed networks, and writing software that enables them to be in full control of their own computers.

How can we use Free Software to build strong democratic institutions?
How can we get better at sharing knowledge for progress?
Are citizens naked and alone in the age of "cloud computing"?
What rules do we need to secure freedom in the digital society?

Meet us at the Booth

FSFE will have two different booths

As every year, we're looking forward to many meetings and discussions!