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  4. <title>FSF Europe - Recommendation for the 6th EU Framework Programme</title>
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  7. <div>
  8. [ <a href="/activities/policy/fp6/">Back to the FP6 page</a> ]
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  11. <h3>Hamburg, April 30th, 2002</h3>
  12. </div>
  13. <center>
  14. <h1>Recommendation</h1>
  15. of the Free Software Foundation Europe (FSF Europe)<br />
  16. and supporting parties<br />
  17. for the<br />
  18. <b>Proposal for a Decision of the European Parliament and of the
  19. Council concerning the rules for the participation of undertakings,
  20. research centres and universities and for the dissemination of research
  21. results for the implementation of the European Community framework
  22. programme 2002--2006</b>
  23. </center>
  24. <br />
  25. <center>
  26. <a href="recommendation.pdf">Download as PDF; 126k</a>
  27. </center>
  28. <br />
  29. [ Recommendation | <a href="reasoning.en.html">Reasoning</a> | <a href="supporting-parties.en.html">Supporting Parties</a> ] [ <a href="more-support.en.html">More Supporting Parties</a> ]
  30. <br />
  31. <p>Free Software is a concept that has fundamentally changed the way some
  32. parts of the IT sector are working towards a more stable, lasting and
  33. sustainable approach with higher dynamics and increased efficiency. It
  34. is obvious that the first region to adopt and support this principle
  35. on a larger scale can profit enormously and get a head-start in the
  36. information age.</p>
  37. <p>This document explains some of the reasons why Free Software should be
  38. included in the considerations on the <em>6th European Community
  39. framework programme 2002-2006</em> and gives input on how this could be
  40. done.</p>
  41. <p>Free Software -- sometimes also referred to as ``Libre software'' or
  42. ``Open Source Software'' -- is best defined by the following four
  43. freedoms:</p>
  44. <ul>
  45. <li>1. freedom: The freedom to run the program, for any purpose.</li>
  46. <li>2. freedom: The freedom to study how the program works, and adapt it
  47. to your needs. Access to the source code is a precondition for this.</li>
  48. <li>3. freedom: The freedom to redistribute copies.</li>
  49. <li>4. freedom: The freedom to improve the program, and release your
  50. improvements to the public, so that the whole community
  51. benefits. Access to the source code is a precondition for this.</li>
  52. </ul>
  53. <p>For reasons that can be found online<sup><a NAME="ref1" HREF="#fn1">1</a></sup>, this document will
  54. use Free Software as the preferred term.</p>
  55. <h2>Summary</h2>
  56. <p>The ability of any region, country or person to participate in the
  57. information age will be largely determined by access to and control
  58. over key technologies and networks.</p>
  59. <p>As a result of the proprietary software model, we are currently in a
  60. situation where almost the whole European information technologies
  61. industry is dependent on an oligopoly of U.S. software companies.
  62. Viewed from the European perspective, such a situation is highly
  63. unstable and unfavorable.</p>
  64. <p>Not coincidentally, the only true exception to this, the internet, is
  65. largely run on Free Software.</p>
  66. <p>Recognising the usefulness and importance of Free Software for the
  67. future of Europe, the Information Society Technologies (IST) research
  68. programme of the European Commission has shown increasting interest in
  69. Free Software over the past years. An example of this was the ``2001
  70. action line Free Software development: towards critical mass'' within
  71. the 5th European European Community framework programme.
  72. Consequently, Free Software is also found in the ``Work Programme
  73. 2002'' of the IST.</p>
  74. <p>Free Software provides an alternative model for information technology
  75. with significant advantages for numerous objectives and areas
  76. specified in the Proposal for the <em>6th European Commission
  77. framework programme</em>.</p>
  78. <p>Even if these are sometimes hard to quantify, it is clear that Europe
  79. could greatly benefit from increased employment of Free Software in
  80. terms of</p>
  81. <ul>
  82. <li> Greater independence</li>
  83. <li> Increased sustainability</li>
  84. <li> Freedom from foreign mono- and oligopolies</li>
  85. <li> Alternative hard- and software possibilities</li>
  86. <li> Strengthened domestic market and local industries</li>
  87. <li> Better cooperation between research and economy</li>
  88. <li> Encouraged transdisciplinary research</li>
  89. <li> Better protection of civil rights</li>
  90. </ul>
  91. <p>Free Software is clearly a model of the future and Europe already has
  92. an increasingly vibrant Free Software scene unrivaled anywhere in the
  93. world. This gives Europe a very unique chance to capitalise on the
  94. benefits of Free Software and get a head-start into the knowledge
  95. economy.</p>
  96. <p>For a more detailed and explanatory reasoning, please see section
  97. <a href="reasoning.en.html">Reasoning</a>.</p>
  98. <h2>Recommendation</h2>
  99. <p>We<sup><a NAME="ref2" HREF="#fn2">2</a></sup>
  100. recommend that for all activities within the <em>6th European
  101. Commission framework programme</em>, Free Software becomes the preferred
  102. and recommended choice.</p>
  103. <p>We suggest that the programme and projects should monitor and report
  104. on the share of the funding used for results released under a Free
  105. Software or Free Documentation license. In certain areas like the IST
  106. programme or fundamental research, the objective must be set that this
  107. share is at least 50% of the budget used to produce software or
  108. disseminable documentation.</p>
  109. <p>As other ways of increasing the European edge, we furthermore
  110. recommend:</p>
  111. <ul>
  112. <h3>Dedicated calls</h3>
  113. <p>In some areas -- ``eEurope'' or fundamental scientific research being
  114. two examples -- it would be advisable to enforce the advantages
  115. offered by Free Software by explicitly and exclusively calling for
  116. projects that will release their results under a Free Software and/or
  117. Free Documentation license.</p>
  118. <h3>Preference in evaluation</h3>
  119. <p>As a general criterion it would be in the interest of Europe that
  120. projects making their results available under a Free Software (and --
  121. possibly -- Free Documentation) license<sup><a NAME="ref3"
  122. HREF="#fn3">3</a></sup> should receive a positive score in the
  123. evaluation process, giving them an advantage over comparable projects
  124. not offering this increased European value.</p>
  125. <p>Additional positive scores in the evaluation process should be
  126. granted to projects employing ``Copylefted'' Free Software<sup><a
  127. NAME="ref4" HREF="#fn4">4</a></sup> and projects taking steps to
  128. ensure the enduring availability and legal maintainability of the Free
  129. Software created through copyright assignments<sup><a NAME="ref5"
  130. HREF="#fn5">5</a></sup> to appropriate institutions.</p>
  131. <h3>Information</h3>
  132. <p>The preference and recommendation for Free Software should be added in
  133. the guidelines for evaluators, the policy documents and the documents
  134. explaining the rules of participation for project applications.</p>
  135. <p>Although Free Software is per se available to any organisation, person
  136. or company, the European Commission should seek to inform and
  137. encourage local companies about and to Free Software, building up the
  138. expertise fundamentally necessary for the information age.</p>
  139. </ul>
  140. <hr />
  141. <dt><a NAME="fn1"></a><sup>1</sup>
  142. Please see <a
  143. href="/documents/whyfs.en.html"></a></dt>
  144. <dt><a NAME="fn2"></a><sup>2</sup>
  145. The Free Software Foundation Europe and parties supporting
  146. this recommendation. Information about the FSF Europe and the list
  147. of supporting parties can be found <a href="supporting-parties.en.html">here</a>.</dt>
  148. <dt><a NAME="fn3"></a><sup>3</sup>
  149. See <a href=""></a></dt>
  150. <dt><a NAME="fn4"></a><sup>4</sup>
  151. Copylefted Free Software not only offers the four freedoms quoted
  152. above, it also protects them. The most successful and best-known
  153. Copyleft license is the ``GNU General Public License'' of the Free
  154. Software Foundation, under which more than 50% of all Free Software
  155. is being released.</dt>
  156. <dt><a NAME="fn5"></a><sup>5</sup>
  157. Transferral of exclusive exploitation rights in countries following
  158. the ``Droit d'Auteur'' tradition.</dt>
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  160. <timestamp>$Date$ $Author$</timestamp>
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