Since 2001 the FSFE has been enhancing users' rights by abolishing barriers for software freedom. For 20 years we have been helping individuals and organisations to understand how Free Software contributes to freedom, transparency, and self-determination.

For the next two decades we need your help. We want everyone to be able to control their technology. Free Software and its freedoms to use, study, share, and improve are the key to that goal.

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20 Years FSFE: Time traveller Cory Doctorow sends his wishes from utopian 2041!

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Prolific Sci-fi author Cory Doctorow envisions the world in 2041 and informs us that we were able to solve major world problems thanks to collective work and sharing of knowledge. Doctorow is thanking the FSFE for our 20 years ahead contribution of fostering freedom and disestablishing monopolies.

Cory Doctorow is a British-Canadian writer, author of several Sci-fi novels, who has been blogging for twenty years now. He was co-editor of the blog boingboing.net and now runs his own blog at Pluralistic. Doctorow is one of the trailblazers in the demands of digital rights and software freedom. He speaks in favour of a less restrictive copyright law; his books are published under Creative Commons licenses. His Sci-fi books often deal with the ownership of technological means in the future.

For over a decade, he has been vocal in supporting the work of the FSFE. This year, he is celebrating the 20 year anniversary of FSFE in his own fascinating way. He greets us and congratulates us on our 40 year anniversary, talking to us from 2041. In the video you will find below you can see how Doctorow fits the FSFE into his vision of 2041.

How does Cory Doctorow envision the future?

In Doctorow's 2041, the world has faced many large scale natural disasters, but paradoxically humanity thrives. The solution was to face these challenges collectively and leave the spirit of competition behind. Doctorow sees the value of cooperation in Free Software, contrasting it to corporation monopolies. In this context, he thanks FSFE for its priceless contribution to a better world during the years 2021-2041.

You can read the full transcript of the video below. Cory Doctorow was also our guest in the very first episode of our Software Freedom Podcast which mainly focuses on Digital Restriction Management.

...since you're here: Brand new FSFE20 sticker

In 2021 the Free Software Foundation Europe turns 20. This means two decades of empowering users to control technology. We want to give momentum to the FSFE and even more to our pan-European community, the community that has formed and always will form the shoulders that our movement relies on. To help you celebrating 20 Years of FSFE with us, we have produced a brand new logo sticker. Get it, shout it, share it!

Show others for how long we are already working for software freedom with the new tag 'FSFE since 2001'.

Transcript of Cory Doctorow's birthday wishes for the FSFE

Hello FSFE, and congratulations from the year 2041 on your forty years of fighting for the digital rights of Europeans and of all people in all places! It has been a couple of crazy decades since I spoke to you last at your twentieth.

In those two decades we have seen massive decentralization of the internet thanks in part to deep reforms to our anti-trust and monopoly law, mandates for interoperability, and open APIs. And of course the changes in our economic system that arose from the great crises that we've endured over the past two decades: floods, fires, famine, refugee crises, all of the pandemics that we've lived through.

And it was only by realizing that we had to cooperate rather than compete, that we had to expose our technical infrastructure to outside scrutiny and to outside improvement if we were going to survive crisis after crisis after crisis, that we were able to finally orient ourselves and our economy and our political project and our technological project towards weathering the storm that we had all seen coming but that no one seemed able to confront.

And after all, that turned out to be the difference, the difference between crisis and a happy ending, between dystopia and utopia. It was not whether the heat that we had sunk into the ocean would melt the poles at will, nor whether the coastal cities would drown - they have. Nor whether the wildfires would rage - they did. But whether, when they arose, when these crises came to us, we confronted them head on, or continued to deny them, continued to pretend that we could lock up technical knowledge behind proprietary walls, that we could lock up control of technological systems in the hands of four or five digital robber barons* who insisted that no government had jurisdiction over them and that they were accountable to no one except their shareholders.

Once we realized that, once we embraced the ethic of collective work for a better future for our species, then we were able to turn the tide - not by averting the crises that were already set in motion, but by addressing them when they arose.

Thank you FSFE for the work that you did on that, and thank you to all the organizations allied with us around the world, who joined to make that reality happen.

Cory Doctorow

*'Robber baron' is a historical term originating in the US which criticizes practices of powerful businessmen that had destructive consequences for the society.

About "20 Years FSFE"

In 2021 the Free Software Foundation Europe turns 20. This means two decades of empowering users to control technology .

Banner with FSFE 20 years. FSFE since 2001

Turning 20 is a time when we like to take a breath and to look back on the road we have come, to reflect the milestones we have passed, the successes we have achieved, the stories we have written and the moments that brought us together and that we will always joyfully remember. In 2021 we want to give momentum to the FSFE and even more to our pan-European community, the community that has formed and always will form the shoulders that our movement relies on.

20 Years FSFE is meant to be a celebration of everyone who has accompanied us in the past or still does. Thank you for your place in the structure of the FSFE today and for setting the foundation for the next decades of software freedom to come.