FSFE Newsletter - December 2017 / January 2018
2017: A year full of Free Software
The Free Software Foundation Europe looks back on a very exciting year. While on one hand we managed to take our regular campaigns like I love Free Software and Ask Your Candidates to a new level with extraordinary activities, we also started three new major activities this year that will keep running in 2018 and beyond. These are Public Money Public Code, Save Code Share and the Reuse Initiative.
In the legal field we held the 10th Legal and Licensing Workshop and updated the Fiduciary Licence Agreement to version 2.0. In the technical field, we set up new tools for our community and (co-)developed new tools for our campaigns. All of them are Free Software, of course.
2017 was also a very good year for our outreach. Our community attended 75 events in 11 countries with talks, workshops and booths. In our Berlin office we have welcomed six interns from six different European countries, and our message keeps spreading with new merchandise items and promotional material.
As a result of our joint efforts, we have seen growth in many sectors: in funds, in media attention, and in our community, with the latter being the most important point. The Free Software Foundation Europe could not pursue its mission without the people that make up our community and spread our message. This is a big thank you to all of you: the countless volunteers, supporters and donors who were part of or who made the work of FSFE possible in 2017. Your contributions are priceless and we are doing our best to keep the good work going in 2018!
If you are interested in more details about our activities in 2017, read our yearly report. If you like what we are doing, join the FSFE as a supporter and help us to continue our work for Free Software!
What else have we done? Inside and Outside the FSFE
- Part of a new copyright proposal currently discussed by the European Union is Article 13, which imposes the installation of arbitrary upload filters on every code hosting and sharing provider. Together with over 80 organisations, the FSFE called the EU member states to reject the harmful Article 13 and to Save Code Share.
- The Dutch government released the source code and documentation of "Basisregistratie Personen", a 100 million Euro IT system that registers information about inhabitants within the Netherlands. The FSFE applauds the Dutch government's move towards releasing publicly financed code as Free Software.
- Max Mehl, project manager of the FSFE, explains the current status of the FSFE's work on proposed European Radio Lockdown. While the FSFE was not accepted as member of committee, which assists the European Commission with drafting the delegated acts, we keep raising our demand to save users' rights and Free Software, backed by more than 50 civil society organisations.
- The FSFE submitted its response to the public consultation on the Directive on the re-use of public sector information. In our response we argue that source code needs to be added to the list of 'documents' that governments and other public bodies need to make available for re-use in an open and machine readable format. When it comes to publicly financed software, it should be released to the public under Free Software licences.
- Thanks to April, the French Free Software association, we now have a French translation of our "Public Money? Public Code!" campaign video.
- Erik Albers wrote a report of the FSFE's community meeting and the common spirit with some pictures (http://blog.3rik.cc/2017/12/report-about-the-fsfe-community-meeting-2017/)
- Earlier this year, after a public consultation, we took the decision to change the name of our supporter program, the Fellowship of the FSFE, and talk about our supporters by their true name: Supporters. At the same time as we're completing this change, we're also decommissioning our old Fellowship SmartCard in favor of a brand new FSFE supporter patch.
- Matthias Kirschner, President of the FSFE, argues in a blogpost as a reply to Scott Peterson from Red Hat, that the terms "Open Source Software" and "Free Software" are referring to the same kind of software but only differ in their emphasis. And that it is challenging to impossible and maybe even unnecessary to find a "neutral" term.
- Jonas Öberg, Executive Director of the FSFE, introduces the FSFE's forms API in a blogpost, a way to send emails and manage sign-ups on web pages used in the FSFE community.
- Daniel Pocock, community representative of the FSFE, shared a picture of the fixme.ch hackerspace in Lausanne which promotes the FSFE.
- Michael Kappes blogs about a group of supporters from the Berlin local FSFE group who went to the FIfF-Konferenz in Jena to set up a booth for the FSFE.
- Björn Schiessle, German team co-coordinator, blogs about how to achieve practical software freedom in the cloud.
- We welcome our new associate: Open Labs, Albania
- FSFE has a new t-shirt celebrating the 100 freedoms of Free Software. Also, we have a lot of other nice shirts and merchandise in our online shop - for Christmas or for any other reason.
- Thanks to our growing community and the big demand by people around the world to spread the word about the FSFE and Free Software, we are looking for an office assistant as a part-time job to help us with packing and posting.
- In 2018, again, we are looking for students who can join our team in Berlin for three months or more as a mandatory part of their studies or before graduation.
Do not miss it! Upcoming events with the FSFE
As in recent years, the FSFE will be present with an FSFE assembly at the Chaos Communication Congress, one of the biggest technology related events in Europe. The assembly will be equipped with current merchandise and promotional material, run a Free Software track, invite people to play a Free Software game or to join us in several Free Software song sing-along sessions. After all, the assembly shall be a place for our community to get together and connect with each other. If you are attending Chaos Communication Congress too, use this opportunity to meet and get to know the people behind FSFE, including volunteers and staffers.
As usual, find all the other future events with or by the FSFE listed on our events page.
Use the vacation time to read our yearly report and share it among your friends. Let people know about the importance of Free Software and why they should care about it. Tell them that people around the world form communities with the aim to bring technological freedom, transparency, knowledge and emancipation to everyone. Spread the word about the four freedoms and if possible, help others to exercise their freedoms too.
Join our cause.
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If you would like to share any thoughts, pictures, or news, send them to us. As always, the address is firstname.lastname@example.org. We're looking forward to hearing from you!