Newsletter

FSFE Newsletter October 2018

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Microsoft joins the Open Invention Network

Historically, Microsoft has used software patents to slow down Free Software adoption in businesses and public administration, by claiming patent infringement of important Free Software components and taking billions of dollars from Free Software re-distributors. In recent years, however, Microsoft approached themselves more and more with the Free Software community. In October, this led to Microsoft's next big step to join the LOT Network and the Open Invention Network (OIN), two organisations that aim to solve problems created by software patents towards the GNU/Linux systems.

LOT works to protect members against so called "non-practicing entities", while the OIN wants to protect a defined set of Free Software technologies from patent litigation, defined in their so-called "Linux system definition".

The FSFE welcomes Microsoft's steps, and encourages them to continue in this direction. The FSFE aligns with our sister organisation, the Free Software Foundation (FSF) in their demand that useful next steps should make a clear, unambiguous statement that Microsoft has ceased all patent infringement claims on the use of Linux in Android: to expand the list of packages protected from patents inside the definition of "Linux System", to include every Free Software component found in a GNU/Linux system, and to use the past patent royalties, extorted from Free Software, to fund the effective abolition of all patents covering ideas in software.


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What else have we done? Inside and Outside the FSFE

Do not miss: upcoming events with the FSFE

From November 15 to 17, part of the FSFE team will be present at the SFScon in Bolzano, Italy. The FSFE's president Matthias Kirschner will give a talk and our EU public policy programme manager Alexander Sander will host a policy workshop. Also, we will run a booth, where we will present the findings of the REUSE software study - carried out by the University of Bolzano. If you are around, do pass by: we look forward to meeting you.

Get Active

To let as many people as possible know about software freedom and the FSFE's mission, it is beneficial to explain our cause to them in their mother tongue. Our team of translators does an amazing job in making sure that a majority of Europeans can read our pages in their native language. Indeed, many parts of our homepage have been translated in more than 20 European languages. This is a priceless contribution to spreading software freedom and we are grateful to all contributors who helped us in this.

However, every homepage needs an update from time to time and we will refresh several parts of our homepage in the upcoming weeks - on top of our general publications and news, like this newsletter. This means new parts of our page that need translations. If you are a native speaker of any language apart from English and you like translating, please join our translator team now, and help us to modernize our infrastructure by getting our message out. Our translators team is very helpful and looks forward to welcoming new members. You can get in contact with the team via our mailing list or with individual coordinators listed on the translators page.

Open positions at FSFE

We currently have open positions for an internship as well as for a "Bundesfreiwilligendienst". You an find more information about our internships, previous interns and currently open positions on our internships page.

Contribute to our newsletter

If you would like to share any thoughts, pictures, or news, send them to us. As always, the address is newsletter@fsfe.org. We're looking forward to hearing from you!

Thanks to our community, all the volunteers, supporters and donors who make our work possible. And thanks to our translators, who enable you to read this newsletter in your mother tongue.

Your editor,
Erik Albers


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