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Free software action in LA

by deborah Contributions Published on Feb 28, 2007 01:15 PM

These are pictures from a table and a recent informal meeting in Los Angeles of FSF members and activists. Our gathering was a directed brainstorm about free software action and how local groups and the FSF can work together. First we talked about actions we'd already done – lots of installfests, hackfests and web-based peer support. Then we looked at what could be improved. Two things came up again and again: that groups should have more communication with each other and that with some support the free software movement could be more organized and goal-oriented at the local level. There was also some discussion about the lack of marketing and PR -- during which someone suggested a halftime superbowl ad!

Later on, we got into the future of free software. We came up with general ideas to make free software more accessible like eliminating acronyms and dropping jargon, and specific grassroots tactics like handing out live CDs at high schools, libraries and community centers. We considered reaching out to PC user groups and talking to them about alternatives to proprietary software. There was also time spent looking inward as we thought about big virtual meetings, putting free software news on an RSS feed, podcasting technical presentations and sharing a calendar site. I think everyone left this meeting inspired; knowing that there are actually many of us working in lots of different ways toward user freedom. While the Southern California groups are strengthening their local community, the FSF will be having more conversations with members and activists in other areas about local free software action.

Were you part of this conversation? Do you have something to add about local free software action? We'd like to hear about it! Email us at

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