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  2. <html newsdate="2009-03-11">
  3. <head>
  4. <title>Free Software Foundation Europe Celebrates Eighth Birthday</title>
  5. </head>
  6. <body>
  7. <h1>Free Software Foundation Europe Celebrates Eighth Birthday</h1>
  8. <p newsteaser="yes">For eight years now, the Free Software Foundation Europe has been
  9. working tirelessly for basic rights and freedoms in an increasingly
  10. software-driven society. The 11th of March 2009 sees another major
  11. milestone passed, with its 2^3 (eighth) birthday being celebrated by
  12. its friends, Fellows and associates.</p>
  13. <p>"The world of Free Software has developed dramatically since FSFE was
  14. founded, and FSFE was a core part of that change," Greve observes.
  15. "Free Software has won its first antitrust action. We helped to bring
  16. issues of interoperability and standardisation to the forefront of the
  17. debate, with OOXML being the culmination of this debate. As a
  18. consequence, more governments and public institutions have begun to ask
  19. questions about the sovereignty of their software and data."</p>
  20. <p>In the fast-moving Free Software world, FSFE has often found itself in
  21. at the forefront of new developments. While public campaigns like the
  22. annual Document Freedom Day and the recently launched pdfreaders.org
  23. campaign have been the most visible aspects of FSFE's work, many other
  24. activities have received less publicity because of their inherent behind-the-scenes nature.</p>
  25. <p>Over the course of the last eight years, FSFE has been working
  26. intensively at the United Nations, has promoted Free Software interests
  27. at the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS), contributed to
  28. the Internet Governance Forum (IGF), taken part in discussions at the
  29. World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO), and taught project
  30. managers of the World Bank about Free Software. FSFE has worked with the
  31. European Commission not just as part of its antitrust work, but also through
  32. research and development funding under the framework
  33. programmes, been directly involved in these projects, and has assisted
  34. the Commission by offering input into policy-setting initiatives.</p>
  35. <p>Work in international policy-setting fora always involves a conflict
  36. between getting the word out and affording the confidentiality
  37. necessary to the process involved. Proclaiming victory publicly can
  38. often mean bringing about defeat, and a carefully maintained reputation
  39. is the key to being able to convey the right message, in the right
  40. place, at the right time.</p>
  41. <p>From assisting in legal matters through its Freedom Task Force (FTF) and overseeing the development of Internet regulation, to ensuring interoperability and keeping software patents at bay, FSFE has played an vital role in shaping the future environment for Free Software.</p>
  42. <p>In 2005, FSFE initiated its community programme, the Fellowship, which besides being a major source of funding for FSFE has grown to be a highly successful independent network in its own right, with projects, meetings and celebrations taking place in several countries. Matthias Kirschner, Fellowship Coordinator for FSFE, explains that the
  43. Fellowship has chosen to mark the 2^3 birthday event with a special
  44. edition of the Fellowship Interview series, in which Georg Greve
  45. explains the history behind FSFE and how he came to found it. The
  46. interview is available at <a href="http://fellowship.fsfe.org/interviews/greve/">http://fellowship.fsfe.org/interviews/greve/</a>.</p>
  47. <h2>About the Free Software Foundation Europe</h2>
  48. <p>The Free Software Foundation Europe (FSFE) is a non-profit
  49. non-governmental organisation active in many European countries and
  50. involved in many global activities. Access to software determines
  51. participation in a digital society. To secure equal participation in
  52. the information age, as well as freedom of competition, the Free
  53. Software Foundation Europe (FSFE) pursues and is dedicated to the
  54. furthering of Free Software, defined by the freedoms to use, study,
  55. modify and copy. Founded in 2001, creating awareness for these
  56. issues, securing Free Software politically and legally, and giving
  57. people Freedom by supporting development of Free Software are
  58. central issues of the FSFE.</p>
  59. <p>You will find further information about the work of the FSFE at <a href="http://fsfeurope.org">http://fsfeurope.org</a></p>
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