FSFE Newsletter - May 2017
Daniel Pocock is the new Fellowship representative
From 10 to 24 April 2017 the FSFE ran the ninth annual vote for a Fellowship representative to represent the FSFE's community and Fellowship in the FSFE's General Assembly. The General Assembly consists of members of the FSFE e.V. and is FSFE's legal body. It is responsible for strategic planning, budgeting, agenda-setting, exonerating, and the electing and recalling of the Executive Council and the Financial Officer. And the winner of this year's election is ... Daniel Pocock!
Daniel Pocock came first from seven candidates who ran for office, with a self-description inside our wiki page for the Fellowship Elections 2017 and by participating in public hustings. Unfortunately two different dates were announced for the hustings, but the log-file is available online for everyone who missed it.
The FSFE would like to thank Nicolas Dietrich, former Fellowship representative, for his contributions during the last two years and welcomes Daniel Pocock as a new representative. Please find Daniel's personal conclusions in his own blog.
Help us grow and make a difference in 2017 https://fsfe.org/join/nl2017-05
What else have we done? Inside and Outside the FSFE
- From 26 to 28 April, the FSFE's annual Free Software Legal and Licensing workshop (LLW) took place in Barcelona, Spain. This year we gathered 120 legal experts from all over the world to share their knowledge and experience with each other in a 3-day event that encompassed more than 35 presentations on numerous legal issues, from open data to tooling, software patents and existing challenges for Free Software licensing.
- Armijn Hemel and Shane Coughlan, members of the FSFE Legal Team, published a guide for startups, small businesses, and engineers on "Practical GPL compliance". The guide is designed to demystify GPL compliance and to facilitate the work of compliance engineers on a practical level.
- North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany's most populated state, is having general elections on 14 May 2017. The FSFE joined a "coalition of Free knowledge" which has developed for the first time a "Digital-o-Mat". The "Digital-o-Mat" is a tool to help those voters who are concerned about digital rights and freedoms, to decide about which party to vote for during these elections. Eight questions guide users to choose their own preferences on important topics about digital society - for example questions about the use of Free Software, Open Data or Open Educational Resources. After filling them out, users will see which party matches best with their own preferences and they can additionally browse detailed explanations on the party's positions regarding each topic. The interface for North-Rhine Westphalia is in German, the underlying Software however is Free Software and free to adopt for other purposes.
- On the FSFE's Planet, we had an interesting dialogue popping up between our executive director Jonas Öberg who argues that sometimes you can use proprietary software to further free and open source software although you should be aware about the risk of backfiring. And Daniel Pocock, our new Fellowship representative, answered with "the risk of proprietary software" and that "no deal might be better than a bad deal", meaning that if you cannot achieve something with Free Software you should consider just doing without it.
- Paul Hänsch, one of the FSFE's system administrators, organised the very first physical wiki caretakers meeting. The wiki caretakers are a team of volunteers who help to organise information inside the wiki and make it easy for others to contribute.
- Monitoring shows that in the last semester nine Italian Regions have reduced advertisement of proprietary PDF readers on their website, and that one Region has increased its support for Free Software PDF readers.
- The FSFE's executive director Jonas Öberg, blogs about "a new understanding of non-profit management" and uses this new understanding to analyse the FSFE's characteristics in the uses of technocracy, hierarchy, innovation and direction-orientation. Jonas closes his analytics with some thoughts about the way he would like to see the FSFE evolving.
- The FSFE was present with booths at the Linke Medien Akademie in Berlin/Germany, at the 16th Augsburger Linux Info Tag in Augsburg/Germany, FOSS North in Göteborg/Sweden and Linuxtage in Graz/Austria.
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Your editors, Erik Albers, Polina Malaja FSFE