Free Software Supporter - Issue 111, July 2017
Get ready for the International Day Against DRM on July 9
In the last year, the companies that profit from Digital Restrictions Management (DRM) have continued trying to expand the system of law and technology that weakens our security and curtails our rights.
But since the last International Day Against DRM, the TPP trade agreement -- a key pro-DRM initiative -- crashed and burned. Our allies at the Electronic Frontier Foundation brought major legal and regulatory challenges against DRM in Washington, DC. And an unprecedented movement has risen up against an attempt to add DRM to Web standards.
On Sunday, July 9, 2017, we will channel this momentum into the International Day Against DRM. We'll be gathering, protesting, and making -- showing the world that we insist on a future without Digital Restrictions Management. Will you be a leader and get your community involved in the Day Against DRM? Visit dayagainstdrm.org now to get involved.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
- Fifteen new devices from Technoethical now RYF-certified to respect your freedom
- GNU GPLv3 turns 10!
- Goodbye to Bob Chassell
- A new challenger to Twitter's walled garden: Mastodon
- A free software-filled weekend in Bellingham
- Motion to dismiss denied in recent GNU GPL case
- Conservancy highlight: Tony Sebro, our award-winning general counsel
- The Licensing and Compliance Lab interviews Jonathan Thomas of the OpenShot Video Editor
- RMS photo blog: Belo Horizonte, Brazil
- 2017 SeaGL CFP is open
- GNOME.Asia Summit 2017 call for papers is now open
- June Free Software Directory meeting recaps
- Join the FSF and friends in updating the Free Software Directory
- LibrePlanet featured resource: International Day Against DRM - July 9, 2017
- GNU Spotlight with Brandon Invergo: Twenty-three new GNU releases!
- Richard Stallman's speaking schedule and other FSF events
- Thank GNUs!
- GNU copyright contributions
- Take action with the FSF!
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Fifteen new devices from Technoethical now RYF-certified to respect your freedom
From June 28th
The FSF awarded Respects Your Freedom (RYF) certification to fifteen devices from Technoethical (formerly Tehnoetic), including laptops, docking stations, and a mainboard. The RYF certification mark means that the products meet the FSF's standards in regard to users' freedom, control over the product, and privacy.
GNU GPLv3 turns 10!
From June 29th
Ten years ago today heralded the release of the GNU General Public License version 3. Through several iterations over two years, public drafts enabled the community to develop a license that better addressed the changing software freedom landscape. From Tivoization, to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, to the rise of software patents, many threats to software freedom had arisen since the creation of GPLv2. These threats still exist today, but hackers have for the past ten years had the right tool in their tool kit to fight back, with the GPLv3 being one of the most widely used free software licenses in the world. It's been a great first decade for version 3, with many more great years to come. Happy birthday, GPLv3!
Goodbye to Bob Chassell
From July 3rd by Bradley Kuhn
It's fortunately more common now in Free Software communities today to properly value contributions from non-developers. Historically, though, contributions from developers were often overvalued and contributions from others grossly undervalued. One person trailblazed as (likely) the earliest non-developer contributor to software freedom. His name was Robert J. Chassell—called Bob by his friends and colleagues. Over the weekend, our community lost Bob after a long battle with a degenerative illness. He is survived by his sister, Karen Ringwald, and several nieces and nephews and their families. A memorial service for Bob will take place at 11 am, July 26, 2017, at The First Congregational Church in Stockbridge, MA.
A new challenger to Twitter's walled garden: Mastodon
From June 14th
A free software-filled weekend in Bellingham
From June 15th by Donald Robertson III
John Sullivan, Molly de Blanc, and I recently descended upon Bellingham, WA over the weekend of May 6th and 7th for the annual Linuxfest Northwest conference. Several of our crew had talks accepted at the conference, which draws over 1,500 attendees each year. The FSF also hosted a member meetup and had a conference expo hall table run by volunteers. (Because this conference is such a great place to meet free software activists, it really is unfortunate that its name does not give due credit to the work of the hackers in the GNU Project— we hope that in the future they'll join SeaGL and become a GNU/Linux Fest.)
Motion to dismiss denied in recent GNU GPL case
From June 1st
A case in the United States involving the GNU General Public License (GPL) made headlines recently with a denial of a motion to dismiss. The case, Artifex Software, Inc. v. Hancom, Inc., involves a piece of software licensed under the GPL version 3 or later, called Ghostscript. It is a project from Artifex for handling PostScript, PDFs, and printers (GNU Ghostscript is a separate version of the project, and is not involved or implicated in the case). The denial presents some interesting topics in GNU GPL enforcement.
Conservancy highlight: Tony Sebro, our award-winning general counsel
From June 29th by Software Freedom Conservancy
Conservancy’s General Counsel, Tony Sebro, received an O'Reilly award last month underscoring how impactful his work is for Software Freedom Conservancy and for free software. Tony is a critical member of the Conservancy team, handling all of our legal matters and also as a coordinator of Outreachy. Karen Sandler, Conservancy’s executive director, commented: "Tony’s been a key part of Conservancy. It’s been amazing to watch the organization grow and develop with his help. I continue to be impressed with his skill and dedication and in particular the commitment that he’s shown to helping include more diverse participants in technology."
The Licensing and Compliance Lab interviews Jonathan Thomas of the OpenShot Video Editor
From June 15th
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 June, we conducted an email-based interview with Jonathan Thomas, the developer of the OpenShot Video Editor. The current version was just released at the end of Spring 2017. This was one of the biggest updates ever to OpenShot, and was filled with new features, performance improvements, and tons of bug fixes!
RMS photo blog: Belo Horizonte, Brazil
From June 30th
The Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, is celebrating its 90th anniversary this year, and invited RMS to speak as part of the activities, cultural events, shows, and festivities organized to mark the occasion. On May 29th, 2017, he gave his speech “A Free Digital Society” to an audience of about 850 people, in an auditorium and in an overflow room.
2017 SeaGL CFP is open
From June 19th by SeaGL
SeaGL (Seattle GNU/Linux Conference) is a grassroots technical conference dedicated to spreading awareness and knowledge about the GNU/Linux community and free/libre software/hardware. SeaGL's goal is to produce an event which is as enjoyable and informative for those who spend their days maintaining hundreds of servers as it is for a student who has only just started exploring technology options. 2017 Call for Participation is open; speakers of all backgrounds and levels of experience are welcome. Deadline is August 6th.
GNOME.Asia Summit 2017 call for papers is now open
From June 25th
GNOME.Asia Summit 2017 invites proposals for presentations at the conference. GNOME.Asia Summit is the featured annual GNOME Conference in Asia. The event focuses primarily on the GNOME desktop, but also covers applications and the development platform tools. It brings together the GNOME community in Asia to provide a forum for users, developers, foundation leaders, governments and businesses to discuss the present technology and future developments.
June Free Software Directory meeting recaps
Check out the great work our volunteers accomplished at the June Free Software Directory meetings. Every week free software activists from around the world come together in #fsf on irc.freenode.net to help improve the Free Software Directory.
June 23rd meeting
June 16th meeting
June 9th meeting
June 2nd meeting
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.net, 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, July 7th from 12pm to 3pm EDT (16:00 to 19:00 UTC). Details here:
LibrePlanet featured resource: International Day Against DRM - July 9, 2017
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 International Day Against DRM events list, which provides information about this year's Day Against DRM projects. 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 email@example.com.
GNU Spotlight with Brandon Invergo: Twenty-three new GNU releases!
(as of June 26, 2017):
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 John Darrington as the maintainer of the new GNU package spread-sheet-widget and Bernd Edlinger as the maintainer of the new GNU package Mempool.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org with any GNUish questions or suggestions for future installments.
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:
- August 17, 2017: Boston, MA "Free Software: Freedom, Privacy, Sovereignty"
- September 7, 2017: Chicago, IL "Speech topic to be announced"
Other FSF and free software events
- July 9, 2017: Washington, DC, "Washington DC: Screening and Discussion of 'Steal this Film'"
- August 6-12, 2017: DebConf17, Montreal, Canada John Sullivan - "Freedom Embedded: Devices that Respect Users and Communities"
- August 6-12, 2017: DebConf17, Montreal, Canada John Sullivan - "Free Software Foundation Members Talk about the FSF and Debian"
- August 6-12, 2017: DebConf17, Montreal, Canada John Sullivan - "Increasingly permissive or increasingly dismissive: Is GPL use declining?"
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:
- Alain Brenzikofer
- David Hampton
- Dean Ujihara
- Tyler Romeo
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:
- Britt Canaan Gresham (Mailman)
- Evgeni Dragomirov Kolev (Emacs)
- Libin Dang (Smalltalk)
- Mathieu Lirzin (Automake, Texinfo)
- Michael Builov (Make)
- Michihito Shigemura (Emacs)
- Nathan Moreau (Emacs)
- Pranav Deshpande (Chess)
- Soo Heon Kim (Emacs)
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/.