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I love FS celebrations +++ FOSDEM 2024 +++ SFP episode


Our March newsletter is here! Last month took us to FOSDEM, while ‘I Love Free Software Day’ was celebrated all over Europe. We also launched a new SFP episode on the state of Free Software and a discussion on banking and Software Freedom. Check out some interesting reading and event recommendations!

Collage picture of a DIY IloveFS heart with lights, FSFE staff and volunteers at our FOSDEM 2024 booth, and an image of a phone with a 2FA app on it

FOSDEM was a blast!

At the beginning of February, FSFE volunteers and staffers went back to Brussels to take part in FOSDEM 2024 with a booth and talks. While for some of us this has become an awesome yearly experience, it was the first time for others. We asked one of our interns to share his thoughts about his first time there, but we also collected the recordings of the talks and devrooms we were involved with.

Find out more!

Thanks to all who made I Love Free Software Day 2024 a great success!

Together with hundreds of people and several organisations, we have celebrated another “I Love Free Software Day” on 14 February! On this day, we reached out to Free Software contributors to say “Thank you!” To all who joined us this time: Thank you for participating in this 14th edition of the “I Love Free Software Day” ❤️❤️❤️!

Read the report!

SFP: The status of Free Software with Karen Sandler and Alexander Sander

Have there been any changes for Free Software in Europe or the USA in the last year? How is Free Software viewed by legislators? What can we do to Support Software Freedom? Karen Sandler and Alexander Sander are active in the Free Software movement and share their views on the current status of Free Software in our society.

Listen to it now!

Software Freedom in banking

Are you forced to use proprietary applications when dealing with your bank? What is the relationship between banking applications and Free Software? Our staff member Florian Snow has been researching this topic and found that banks are pushing the development and use of proprietary applications for two-factor authentification. In doing so, they are restricting users' freedom to choose a one-time password generator of their choice.

Read more and take part in the discussion on the mailing list and on the fediverse!

About Device Neutrality, the DMA, and software licensing

In recent years, the FSFE team has been working for Device Neutrality, promoting ways to re-empower users to control their devices by running Free Software on them. With the upcoming entrance into force of the latest EU legislation on this area – the Digital Markets Act – policy makers are interested in the strategies adopted by large tech corporations (gatekeepers) to comply with the DMA. The FSFE was contacted by the Headquarters for Digital Market Competition of Japan (HDMC) regarding Apple’s strategy to comply with the DMA and its impact on Free Software. Our staff prepared a study in collaboration with F-Droid. You can read the report here (PDF).

In regard to the DMA, we also recommend reading a paper that our Legal Programme Manager, Lucas Lasota, has published linking the DMA, Free Software, and freedom of terminal equipment. This study puts into perspective the role Free Software has in facilitating the process of achieving fairness and contestability of digital markets. As a case study, this article presents the recent regulatory developments involving routers and modems in the EU, and the interaction telecom operators’ monopolistic practices have with Free Software.

Last but not least, the FSFE has also provided an in-depth analysis of the compliance workflow adopted for the Next Generation Internet (NGI) initiative. The study analyzes the compliance issues software projects may face during their implementation of Free Software licenses. This article concludes with the lessons learned from the experience gathered in the three years of implementation of the compliance workflow established for the NGI initiative, and especially notes how REUSE plays a game-changing role in this context.

Please share these publications to strengthen our efforts towards Software Freedom!

Join our next events!

For first time, we are participating in the Circonomia Festival in Fano (PU), Italy. There, we will be hosting, from 8 to 10 March, a workshop on decentralized and sustainable networks and Free Software, and a reading of the book “Ada & Zangemann” in Italian. You are welcome to join us any of the three days! Find out more in the event page.

A weekend later, on 16 and 17 March, you can meet as in the Chemnitzer Linux Days! One more year we are attending this long-standing event for education about Linux and Free Software. We will be present with an information booth, and on Saturday, the FSFE’s Policy Project Manager, Johannes Näder, will present Youth Hacking 4 Freedom, the Free Software competition for young people aged 14-18, currently in its third edition.

And if you are in Utrecht that Saturday, on 16 March, stop by at our info booth at the national Dutch Linux Users Group (NLLGG) meeting!

Remember that you can find all the information about our events at events.fsfe.org.

Take action: spread the word about FediGov!

FediGov is an initiative by the FSFE Swiss local group, together with GNU/Linux.ch, which aims to raise awareness among public institutions to use federated Free Software solutions to communicate with the public.

This campaign encourages individuals to ask their governments to adopt federated and decentralized communications by explaining to their local authorities the importance of sovereign communications in the public sector.

You can help by spreading the word at the local level, but also by contributing to the website with translations or improvements! Take action!

Quote of the month

I think the best thing about YH4F is that it promotes Free Software alternatives to people who haven’t had the chance to realize the benefits of such projects. I use Free Software pretty frequently, especially when it comes to operating systems.

Alexia, Youth Hacking 4 Freedom 2022 participant

Contribute to our Newsletter

We would love to hear from you. If you have any thoughts, pictures, or news to share, please send them to us at newsletter@fsfe.org. You can also support us, contribute to our work, and join our community. We would like to thank our community and all the volunteers, supporters, and donors who make our work possible, with a special mention to our translators who make it possible for you to read this newsletter in your mother tongue.

Your editors,
Ana and Tommi