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<html newsdate="2016-06-24">
<title>FSFE's answers to the European Commission's Public Consultation:
Revision of the European Interoperability Framework</title>
<h1>FSFE's answers to the European Commission's Public Consultation:
Revision of the European Interoperability Framework</h1>
<p>The European Commission is
<a href="http://ec.europa.eu/isa/consultations/impact-assessment-for-the-revision-of-the-eis-eifl_en.htm">asking
for public input with regard to its plans to renew the European
Interoperability Framework</a> (EIF). The EIF aims to promote enhanced
interoperability in the EU public sector. The document, originally intended
as a set of non-binding guidelines for the EU public administration, is
going through its third revision since its initial adoption in 2004. The
FSFE has prepared its <a href="/freesoftware/standards/eif-v3.html">comments
for the draft of the revised guidelines</a>.</p>
<p>The FSFE sees some improvement compared to
<a href="/news/2010/news-20101216-01.html">the previous
revision</a>, in particular concerning the preferred use of Open Standards (called
"open specifications" in the draft revision) in European public services.</p>
<p>However, we need to address several shortcomings. The statement that
FRAND (allegedly "fair, reasonable, and non-discriminatory") licensing terms
for standards "will foster competition" (according to the Commission) is
just plain wrong. FRAND licenses are highly anti-competitive in nature
and it is a well-established fact that
<a href="/freesoftware/standards/why-frand-is-bad-for-free-software.html">they
make it impossible for a standard to be implemented in Free Software</a>.</p>
<p>The draft also ignores the proven relationship between interoperability
and Free Software. Most, if not all, national interoperability frameworks
across Europe have based their success on substantial adoptions of Free
Software and Open Standards in public services. So much so it is to all
effects impossible to implement an interoperability framework without Free
Software. For more information, please see
<strong><a href="/freesoftware/standards/eif-v3.html">our full comments on the revision of the EIF</a></strong>.</p>
<p>The FSFE encourages you to <a href="http://ec.europa.eu/isa/consultations/impact-assessment-for-the-revision-of-the-eis-eifl_en.htm">provide
your own input to the ongoing consultation</a>. Replies can be submitted
by individuals, companies, academic institutions, and public administrations
before <strong>29 June</strong>. Feel free to reuse the arguments laid out
above for your own submission and tell the Commission how Free Software
and Open Standards are quintessential for interoperability.</p>
<tag key="front-page"/>
<tag key="eif"/>
<tag key="openstandards">Open Standards</tag>
<tag key="policy">Policy</tag>
<tag key="european-commission">European Commission</tag>
<tag key="digital-single-market">Digital Single Market</tag>