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You are here: Home Free Software Supporter 2017 Free Software Supporter - Issue 116, December 2017

Free Software Supporter - Issue 116, December 2017

by Free Software Foundation Contributions Published on Nov 08, 2017 01:14 PM
Welcome to the Free Software Supporter, the Free Software Foundation's (FSF) monthly news digest and action update -- being read by you and 184,315 other activists. That's 605 more than last month!
Fundraiser banner screenshot 12-1-2017

Donate today to power up the free software movement!

The FSF's work is driven by the four freedoms that define free software -- and by you. Software freedom is necessary to people's freedom because nearly every person interacts with or is affected by software. Will you power up the free software movement by supporting the FSF today?

As of this writing, we are over a quarter of the way to our fundraising goal! We also want to welcome 700 new FSF Associate Members -- help us meet our first milestone of 100 members today (we're so close). If you aren't a member yet, join now!

If you're already a member, you can still help us reach this milestone, and more: give a current or potential free software supporter a Free Software Foundation Associate Membership today, and your support of the FSF will be doubled!

Give the gift of freedom with the Ethical Technology Giving Guide

From November 22

With the holidays on the horizon, we know that a lot of you are on the lookout for cool tech gifts to thrill your loved ones. However, we also know that you don't want to trap them with proprietary software and insidious technologies like Digital Restrictions Management (DRM). Thankfully, we at the FSF research the best user freedom-respecting products available. We're excited to share these with you in the 2017 Ethical Technology Giving Guide.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

  • Protect software freedom: Support net neutrality
  • FCC releases net neutrality killing order, hopes you're too busy cooking turkey to read it
  • How to explain why net neutrality matters to your friends who don't get it
  • Red Hat leads coalition supporting key part of Principles of Community-Oriented GPL Enforcement
  • Richard Stallman and the vanishing state of privacy
  • You can now register as a Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) agent without using nonfree JavaScript
  • Researchers craft Android app that reveals menagerie of hidden spyware
  • Munich city council votes to ditch LiMux, backsliding to Windows
  • Free software job openings available at Storj Labs, Inc.
  • Potential impact of the Intel ME vulnerability
  • The Licensing and Compliance Lab interviews BiglyBT
  • October 2017: Photos from RMS trip to Mexico
  • Donate to GNU Mailman
  • Canonical joins GNOME Foundation Advisory Board
  • GNU Linux-libre 4.14-gnu released, still a battle deblobbing driver firmware
  • GNU nano updates
  • November Free Software Directory meeting recap
  • Join the FSF and friends in updating the Free Software Directory
  • LibrePlanet featured resource: Guix
  • GNU Spotlight with Brandon Invergo: 17 new GNU releases!
  • GNU Toolchain update
  • Richard Stallman's speaking schedule and other FSF events
  • Thank GNUs!
  • GNU copyright contributions
  • Take action with the FSF!

View this issue online here: https://www.fsf.org/free-software-supporter/2017/december

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El Free Software Supporter está disponible en español. Para ver la versión en español haz click aqui: https://www.fsf.org/free-software-supporter/2017/diciembre

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Le Free Software Supporter est disponible en français. Pour voir la version française cliquez ici: https://www.fsf.org/free-software-supporter/2017/decembre

Pour modifier vos préférences et recevoir les prochaines publications du Supporter en français, cliquez ici: https://my.fsf.org/civicrm/profile/edit?reset=1&gid=34&id={contact.contact_id}&{contact.checksum}

Protect software freedom: Support net neutrality

From December 1

The United States Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is about to gut Title II, destroying net neutrality protections. We only have two weeks to save them. This is the time to act.

FCC releases net neutrality killing order, hopes you're too busy cooking turkey to read it

From November 22 by Karl Bode

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) tried to use the Thanksgiving holiday to distract the press and public from its blatant handout to one of the least liked and least competitive industries in America. Trying to bury such an insult to consumers behind the cranberry sauce is an obvious underestimation of just how unpopular this plan is, and the policy, political, and cultural backlash it's going to generate for years.

How to explain why net neutrality matters to your friends who don't get it

From November 27 by Jacob Kleinman

If you’re struggling to convince a friend, neighbor, or coworker that the FCC is about to make a huge mistake by dismantling net neutrality, here are a few talking points to help you make your argument.

Red Hat leads coalition supporting key part of Principles of Community-Oriented GPL Enforcement

From December 1

The group of companies say that they will commit to using the superior approach to license termination found in version 3 of the GNU General Public License (GPL) on GPLv2 works. This commendable action is part of a growing trend of organizations adopting ethical compliance practices as described in the Principles of Community-Oriented GPL Enforcement.

Richard Stallman and the vanishing state of privacy

From November 20 by Lucy Ingham

We are now subject to a greater level of surveillance than any point in history, and most of it is thanks to the digital revolution of the last few decades. In this interview, Lucy Ingham learns about how the digital transformation has dramatically eroded our privacy, and what it means for our lives.

You can now register as a Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) agent without using nonfree JavaScript

From November 13

Taking advantage of the DMCA safe harbor provisions requires having an agent to accept the notices, but the US Copyright Office's site requires Web site maintainers to re-register using a site that is lousy with nonfree JavaScript. With the deadline approaching at the end of the year, we collaborated with a volunteer to create a workaround that allows you to register with only free software, using two freely licensed add-ons to be used with GNU LibreJS.

Researchers craft Android app that reveals menagerie of hidden spyware

From November 25 by Cory Doctorow

Yale Privacy Lab and Exodus Privacy's devastating report on the dozens of invasive, dangerous "trackers" hidden in common Android apps was generated by writing code that spied on their target devices' internal operations, uncovering all manner of sneaking trickery.

Munich city council votes to ditch LiMux, backsliding to Windows

From November 13 by Andrew Silver

Munich rose to fame in the free software world for deciding to use GNU/Linux and LibreOffice to make the city independent from the claws of Microsoft. But the plan was never fully realized, and a coalition of Social Democrats and Conservatives on the committee voted for the Windows migration this month. The Document Foundation, the home of LibreOffice, has thrown their support behind the “Munich stays free” alliance, a group of free software supporters who have created a Web site explaining the importance of free software in public administrations.

Free software job openings available at Storj Labs, Inc.

From October 27

Who says you can't get paid for doing what you love? Storj Labs, Inc. is hiring a Site Reliability Engineer and two Senior Software Engineers. At Storj, you’ll be part of a dedicated team working towards improving the accessibility, reliability, convenience, privacy, and security of data storage. Details about each position are in the links below.

Potential impact of the Intel ME vulnerability

From November 27 by Matthew Garrett

Intel's Management Engine (ME) is a small coprocessor built into the majority of Intel CPU chipsets. The precise capabilities of the ME have not been publicly disclosed, but software running on the ME is capable of doing a lot, without requiring any OS permission in the process. Back in May, Intel announced a vulnerability in the Advanced Management Technology (AMT) that runs on the ME. The vulnerability meant that it was possible to log into systems with enabled AMT with an empty authentication token, making it possible to log in without knowing the configured password. A second vulnerability was announced in November. Given what we know right now it's hard to say how serious this is in terms of real world impact, but this blog explains what we know so far.

The Licensing and Compliance Lab interviews BiglyBT

From November 30

This is the latest installment of our Licensing and Compliance Lab's series on free software developers who choose GNU licenses for their work. In this edition, we conducted an email-based interview with Parg and TuxPaper from BiglyBT.

October 2017: Photos from RMS trip to Mexico

From November 30

Free Software Foundation president Richard Stallman (RMS) was in Mexico at the end of October and the beginning of November, and visited several cities, where he delivered speeches on software freedom.

Donate to GNU Mailman

From November 28 by Abhilash Raj

GNU Mailman 3 is the new and improved version with extra features, better security, and much better architecture. Mailman 3 is not very far from becoming the default version everyone would use, but it still needs some work to get there. We need help from you, the users of Mailman, to get us there. There are options to donate using credit card, Bitcoin, wire transfer (of any currency), check, and money order.

Canonical joins GNOME Foundation advisory board

From November 1 by GNOME Foundation

The GNOME Foundation is pleased to announce that Canonical has joined the GNOME Foundation advisory board. The Advisory Board is a body of stakeholder organizations and companies who support the GNOME Project by providing funding and expert consultation. The board includes Google, the Linux Foundation, and the Free Software Foundation, among others.

GNU Linux-libre 4.14-gnu released, still a battle deblobbing driver firmware

From November 13 by Michael Larabel

The Free Software Foundation Latin America team are once again punctual in delivering their updated GNU Linux-libre kernel. Just hours after Linus Torvalds released Linux 4.14, the libre downstream released GNU Linux-libre 4.14-gnu.

GNU nano updates

From November 18 by GNU Nano Core Development Team

GNU nano 2.9.0 "Eta" introduces the ability to record and replay keystrokes, does not overwrite the position-history file of another nano, and fixes a score of tiny bugs.

November Free Software Directory meeting recap

Check out the great work our volunteers accomplished at the November Free Software Directory meetings. Every week free software activists from around the world come together in #fsf on irc.freenode.org to help improve the Free Software Directory.

Join the FSF and friends in updating the Free Software Directory

Tens of thousands of people visit directory.fsf.org each month to discover free software. Each entry in the Directory contains a wealth of useful information, from basic category and descriptions to version control, IRC channels, documentation, and licensing. The Free Software Directory has been a great resource to software users over the past decade, but it needs your help staying up-to-date with new and exciting free software projects.

To help, join our weekly IRC meetings on Fridays. Meetings take place in the #fsf channel on irc.freenode.org, and usually include a handful of regulars as well as newcomers. Freenode is accessible from any IRC client -- Everyone's welcome!

The next meeting is Friday, December 8, from 12pm to 3pm EST (16:00 to 19:00 UTC). Details here:

LibrePlanet featured resource: Guix

Every month on LibrePlanet, we highlight one resource that is interesting and useful -- often one that could use your help.

For this month, we are highlighting the Guix group, which provides information about GNU Guix, a purely functional package manager for the GNU system distribution. You are invited to adopt, spread, and improve this important resource.

Do you have a suggestion for next month's featured resource? Let us know at campaigns@fsf.org.

GNU Spotlight with Brandon Invergo: 17 new GNU releases!

For announcements of most new GNU releases, subscribe to the info-gnu mailing list: https://lists.gnu.org/mailman/listinfo/info-gnu.

To download: nearly all GNU software is available from https://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/, or preferably one of its mirrors from https://www.gnu.org/prep/ftp.html. You can use the URL https://ftpmirror.gnu.org/ to be automatically redirected to a (hopefully) nearby and up-to-date mirror.

This month, we welcome Bertrand Garrigues as maintainer of GNU Groff.

A number of GNU packages, as well as the GNU operating system as a whole, are looking for maintainers and other assistance: please see https://www.gnu.org/server/takeaction.html#unmaint if you'd like to help. The general page on how to help GNU is at https://www.gnu.org/help/help.html.

If you have a working or partly working program that you'd like to offer to the GNU Project as a GNU package, see https://www.gnu.org/help/evaluation.html.

As always, please feel free to write to us at maintainers@gnu.org with any GNUish questions or suggestions for future installments.

GNU Toolchain update

From November 3

The GNU toolchain refers to the part of the GNU system which is used for building programs. These components of GNU are together often on other systems and for compiling programs for other platforms.

Donate to support the GNU Toolchain, a collection of foundational freely licensed software development tools including the GNU C Compiler collection (GCC), the GNU C Library (glibc), and the GNU Debugger (GDB).

Richard Stallman's speaking schedule

For event details, as well as to sign-up to be notified for future events in your area, please visit https://www.fsf.org/events.

So far, Richard Stallman has the following events this month:

Other FSF and free software events

Thank GNUs!

We appreciate everyone who donates to the Free Software Foundation, and we'd like to give special recognition to the folks who have donated $500 or more in the last month.

This month, a big Thank GNU to:

  • Adam Lewis
  • Alessandro Vesely
  • Charles Birk
  • Clark Everetts
  • Conner McKeeth
  • Dara Adib
  • Gary Stimson
  • Julian Graham
  • Matteo Frigo
  • Pete Batard
  • Philipp Weis
  • Plamen Ivanov
  • René Genz
  • Rob Vens
  • Roland Pesch
  • Terence O'Gorman
  • Thomas Hahn
  • Tiago Vieira
  • Victor Charpenay
  • 炳辰 巩

You can add your name to this list by donating at https://donate.fsf.org/.

GNU copyright contributions

Assigning your copyright to the Free Software Foundation helps us defend the GPL and keep software free. The following individuals have assigned their copyright to the FSF in the past month:

  • Ahmad Fatoum (GNU Binutils)
  • Luke Shumaker (glibc)
  • Neil Howard Locketz (Wget)
  • Wilfred Hughes (Smalltalk)
  • YX Hao (Wget)

Want to see your name on this list? Contribute to GNU and assign your copyright to the FSF.

Take action with the FSF!

Contributions from thousands of individual members enable the FSF's work. You can contribute by joining at https://my.fsf.org/join. If you're already a member, you can help refer new members (and earn some rewards) by adding a line with your member number to your email signature like:

I'm an FSF member -- Help us support software freedom! https://my.fsf.org/join

The FSF is always looking for volunteers (https://www.fsf.org/volunteer). From rabble-rousing to hacking, from issue coordination to envelope stuffing -- there's something here for everybody to do. Also, head over to our campaigns section (https://www.fsf.org/campaigns) and take action on software patents, Digital Restrictions Management (DRM), free software adoption, OpenDocument, Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), and more.

Copyright © 2017 Free Software Foundation, Inc.

This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 Unported License. To view a copy of this license, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.

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