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[FSF] NPR station WBUR Boston adds support for free audio standard

From: Joshua Gay
Subject: [FSF] NPR station WBUR Boston adds support for free audio standard
Date: Wed, 14 May 2008 14:19:09 -0400
User-agent: Mutt/1.5.17+20080114 (2008-01-14)

NPR station WBUR Boston adds support for free audio standard

BOSTON, Massachusetts, USA -- May 14, 2008 -- The Free Software
Foundation (FSF) has marked a milestone in their
campaign with the announcement that National Public Radio (NPR) news
station WBUR Boston has begun worldwide webcasting in the free audio
format Ogg Vorbis. 

Robin Lubbock, WBUR's director of new media said, "WBUR has a great
schedule of news and information programming 24 hours a day, which we
are very happy to make available to Ogg Vorbis listeners. It's
exciting to work with the Free Software Foundation to give a new
audience the chance to listen to WBUR's award winning programing as
well as the wonderful programs from NPR and the BBC Worldservice that
you can find daily on WBUR."

Peter Brown, executive director of the FSF, responded to the news
stating, "I would like to thank WBUR general manager Paul La Camera,
for so graciously listening to the case we made for free audio
standards. The leadership displayed by WBUR in providing a free audio
format will help to bring this issue the national attention and
recognition it deserves, and will serve as a vital step in educating
the public and other publicly funded radio stations. We urge NPR
listeners to stream WBUR's Ogg Vorbis stream, and to acknowledge and
thank WBUR for this work when making your contributions."

Unlike MP3, Windows Media, Real Audio or Quicktime, Ogg Vorbis is not
restricted by software patents. The threat of these patent lawsuits
chills independent development of multimedia software tools. The use
of unencumbered formats like Ogg Vorbis is necessary for providing
access to publicly funded news and other programming without
dependence on the patent-holding corporations and proprietary software

Patent-encumbered formats owned by companies like Microsoft and Apple
require listeners to use non-free software; controlled by them, not by
the users. They design their software to restrict the users and spy on
their activities. If users choose Ogg Vorbis for audio and Ogg Theora
for video, they can use many different media players, including free
software designed to respect their freedom and privacy.

Joshua Gay, FSF campaigns manager explained the campaign, "[i]t is
time for our publicly funded broadcasters to take seriously the impact
their decisions to webcast only in proprietary formats have on the
future of free unencumbered audio standards. Today, WBUR has made an
important commitment to free standards, and we are now working with
other publicly funded broadcasters to follow their example".

The WBUR stream is available at <>, or you
can go directly to <>.

Resources and a mailing list to track related events can be found at
<>. Technical details about the Ogg Vorbis format
are at <>

#About The Free Software Foundation

The Free Software Foundation, founded in 1985, is dedicated to
promoting computer users' right to use, study, copy, modify, and
redistribute computer programs. The FSF promotes the development and
use of free (as in freedom) software -- particularly the GNU operating
system and its GNU/Linux variants -- and free documentation for free
software. The FSF also helps to spread awareness of the ethical and
political issues of freedom in the use of software, and its Web sites,
located at and, are an important source of information
about GNU/Linux. Donations to support the FSF's work can be made at
<>. Its headquarters are in Boston, MA, USA.

#Media Contacts

Joshua Gay  
Campaigns Manager  
Free Software Foundation  


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