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  1. <?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8" ?>
  2. <html newsdate="2015-01-05" type="newsletter">
  3. <head>
  4. <title>FSFE Newsletter - January 2015</title>
  5. </head>
  6. <body class="newsletter article" microformats="h-entry" id="nl-201501">
  7. <h1 class="p-name">FSFE Newsletter – January 2015</h1>
  8. <h2>A revolution</h2>
  9. <p newsteaser="yes">
  10. The Earth has once again completed a full, customarily counted
  11. revolution. Here at FSFE we have been busy throughout 2014, working hard
  12. to ensure that users remain in control of their devices and that Free
  13. Software may once compete on a level playing field for public tenders.
  14. More information, including the extent of our limited success and our
  15. future prospects, on both these issues and our other frontiers may be
  16. found in our <a href="/news/2014/news-20141218-02.html">annual report for 2014</a>,
  17. penned by our President <a href="/about/gerloff">Karsten Gerloff</a>.
  18. </p>
  19. <p>
  20. In addition to providing a comprehensive overview of our activities in
  21. 2014, Karsten finishes the report with a sneak peek of the challenges
  22. we are going to face and overcome in revolution 2015.
  23. For instance, we intend to build on the success of the
  24. <a href="http://freesoftwarepact.eu/">Free Software Pact</a> to spread
  25. awareness about Free Software among both the elected representatives of
  26. the European citizenry and the unelected bureaucrats of the executive
  27. branch.
  28. </p>
  29. <p>
  30. We also intend to invest more in our local volunteers and Fellowship
  31. groups. We are hopeful that not only will we reach a wider audience and
  32. have a greater impact with increased local participation, but this will
  33. also be much more fun for everyone involved.
  34. </p>
  35. <h2>Fellowship elections</h2>
  36. <p>
  37. FSFE has a bit less than 1500 <a href="/fellowship/">Fellows</a> or
  38. sustaining members. In addition to receiving
  39. <a href="/fellowship/about/fellowship.html#youget">certain benefits</a>
  40. useful for digital activists, all of them have a say in the governance
  41. of the FSFE. This right is exercised by
  42. <a href="/about/legal/constitution.html#id-fellowship-seats">electing</a>
  43. representatives to the General Assembly, the highest decision-making
  44. body of FSFE. Your temporary editor will have served his term as a
  45. Fellowship Representative by this spring, and hence a new Representative
  46. will be elected by the orderly Fellows from February 20th to March 6th
  47. 2015, 12pm.
  48. </p>
  49. <p>
  50. Your outgoing Representative would like to take this opportunity to
  51. invite all our Fellows to partake in the elections. The General Assembly
  52. is responsible for making all strategic decisions for FSFE, and all
  53. Fellows, whether true idealists or business-minded pragmatists, have
  54. the same right to affect our future growth and direction, so please do
  55. so.
  56. </p>
  57. <h2>EU: the good and the bad</h2>
  58. <p>
  59. On December 17, 2014, the European Parliament adopted the EU budget for
  60. 2015. We are very happy to report that thanks to the efforts of MEPs
  61. Julia Reda (Pirates) and Max Andersson (Greens), the Parliament has
  62. allocated up to a million euros to audit Free Software used by the
  63. European Parliament and Commission. We hope that the institutions
  64. concerned will closely work with upstream developers to best benefit
  65. the public. We also welcome
  66. <a href="/news/2014/news-20141219-01.html">further allocations</a>
  67. that aim to allow equal participation in the digital society.
  68. </p>
  69. <p>
  70. Unfortunately, we must still call upon EU institutions to make use of
  71. Open Standards and Free Software, as a recent study prepared for the
  72. Greens/EFA
  73. <a href="/news/2014/news-20141212-01.html">has found</a> that the EU
  74. Parliament falls woefully short of its democratic obligations to ensure
  75. transparency and openness. Among other shortcomings the parliamentarians
  76. lack access to a standards-compliant e-mail solution.
  77. </p>
  78. <h2>Something completely different</h2>
  79. <ul>
  80. From the planet aggregation:
  81. <li>
  82. Paul Boddie writes about the
  83. ‘<a href="https://blogs.fsfe.org/pboddie/?p=802">unplanned obsolescence</a>’
  84. of early Fairphone devices, justifiedly arguing that Fairphone's
  85. decision to overlook or deprioritize hardware support for Free
  86. Software was unwise considering the abundance of information available
  87. on the lack of hardware support for Free Software.
  88. </li>
  89. <li>
  90. Otto Kekäläinen
  91. <a href="http://seravo.fi/2014/password-hygiene-every-mans-responsibility">writes</a>
  92. about password management while recognizing that people are not
  93. storage media. Otto's piece is an excellent read when taken with a
  94. pinch of salt.
  95. </li>
  96. <li>
  97. Nico Rikken contemplates the right to make bad choices in his piece
  98. ‘<a href="http://nicorikken.eu/blog/optional-rights/">Optional rights</a>’.
  99. </li>
  100. </ul>
  101. <p>
  102. 2015 will bring a new etiquette to our Fellowship Planet. A proposed
  103. draft will be presented to the Fellows for consultation at the earliest
  104. convenience.
  105. </p>
  106. <h2>Get active: spread free software</h2>
  107. <p>
  108. The gift giving season has just ended. No doubt you have a friend or
  109. relative unfortunate enough to have been given a computer bundled with
  110. non-free software as a gift. Help them install a free GNU/Linux
  111. distribution or <a href="http://www.replicant.us/">Replicant</a>.
  112. </p>
  113. <p>
  114. Thanks to all the <a href="/contribute/contribute.html">volunteers</a>,
  115. <a href="http://fellowship.fsfe.org/join">Fellows</a> and
  116. <a href="/donate/thankgnus.html">corporate donors</a> who enable our
  117. work,<br />
  118. <a href="/about/ojasild">Heiki Ojasild</a><br />
  119. Fellowship Representative, <a href="http://www.fsfe.org">FSFE</a>
  120. </p>
  121. <!--/e-content-->
  122. </body>
  123. <sidebar promo="about-fsfe" />
  124. <author id="repentinus" />
  125. <date>
  126. <original content="2015-01-05" />
  127. </date>
  128. <followup>donate</followup>
  129. <tags>
  130. <tag>newsletter</tag>
  131. </tags>
  132. </html>
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