# Free Software Supporter
Issue 30, September 2010
Welcome to the Free Software Supporter, the Free Software
Foundation's monthly news digest and action update -- being read by
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TABLE OF CONTENTS
* Interested in free video formats? We need your help!
* The FSF and Project Harmony
* What to do when a company asks for your copyright
* Report your government's advertisement of non-free software
* Intel's HDMInsult
* DRM In (and Out) of Schools
* Look who's using free software...
* FSF responds to Oracle v. Google
* Over 450 letters sent to the USPTO proposing guidelines to end software
* ESP responds to USPTO consultation
* The LibrePlanet community celebrates Software Freedom Day
* LibrePlanet featured resource: List of free software innovations
* ACTA Action: Call on Obama to end the secrecy, reject the treaty
* Videos of GNU Hackers Meeting in the Hague available
* Free Form: Free Software News
* GNU spotlight with Karl Berry
* Richard Stallman's speaking schedule and other FSF events
* Take action with the FSF!
## Interested in free video formats? We need your help!
We're looking for volunteers willing to commit an average of a few
hours per week as reliable technical consultants helping people
transcode their videos to free formats like WebM and Ogg Theora.
If you're familiar with free software video tools and formats, it's a
great opportunity to help make sure videos about free software are
available in high-quality free formats, and to help spread the use of
those formats by teaching new people how to use them!
Email us at <email@example.com> with your contact info and a little
about your related experience.
## The FSF and Project Harmony
Brett Smith talks about the FSF's attendance at Project Harmony, which
aims to create a modular system of contribution agreements. The FSF
has attended Project Harmony meetings to follow developments and give
advice; we hope that the agreements will support the users' freedom,
but we can't be sure they will. In particular, we're concerned that
some of the variations might allow the copyright holder to make all
the code proprietary in the future.
## What to do when a company asks for your copyright
Richard Stallman shares his recommendations on contribution agreements
for free software projects, urging people to read those agreements
He discusses what happens when a "contribution of code could turn out
to be, in effect, a donation to proprietary software." He goes on to
suggest options for developers who find themselves in situations where
it looks like a company wants to use their free contributions as
## Report your government's advertisement of non-free software
The Free Software Foundation Europe has started a campaign to hunt
proprietary PDF software advertisements in governmental websites. The
hunt began on September 13th, and will continue until October 17th
The FSFE and its volunteers will contact these governmental websites
and help them maintain their visitors' freedom by linking to free
software PDF readers that already exist for all major operating
The FSFE has also prepared a petition demanding an end to such
advertising practices, and encourages the public to sign it.
## Intel's HDMInsult
Recently, a master key for the DRM scheme in the HD connector, HDMI,
was discovered and Intel is threatening legal actions against people
who use that key to remove the restrictions on their HD videos.
In addition to that, Intel has introduced DRM'd processors which have
some included-but-locked features and they will ask users to pay more
and use proprietary software to unlock their processors This is the
same kind of mess Microsoft tried to do with Windows NT 4 and is doing
again with Windows 7 -- we call this an antifeature.
You can take action by not buying these malicious devices and
contacting Intel to let them know that you won't be buying them. Don't
forget to CC or BCC us on your email.
## DRM In (and Out) of School
Schools across the world are giving Kindles and iPads to incoming
students. Defective By Design intern Molly de Blanc has written an
essay on what is wrong with these DRM'd devices and how it negatively
## Look who's using free software...
We've added two new resources to our "Working Together for Free
Software" campaign: "Meet the Free Software Community" and "Look who's
using Free Software."
## FSF responds to Oracle v. Google
Oracle has filed suit against Google claiming that Android infringes
some of its Java-related patents. We believe that nobody deserves
to be the victim of software patent aggression, and that Oracle is
wrong to use its patents to attack Android.
We are collecting information about this suit on the End Software
Patents wiki which can be helpful for parties that Oracle might sue.
we also ask you to email Oracle CEO and to respectfully ask him
why Oracle is attacking free software with software patents given
his previous anti-software-patent statements.
## Over 450 letters sent to the USPTO proposing guidelines to end software
Last week, we put out an action item asking people to write to the
USPTO, and explain to them why software should not be eligible for
patents under their forthcoming post-Bilski guidance. To answer the
call, you all sent in more than 450 letters, offering the USPTO all
kinds of legal and practical reasons why they should stop issuing
software patents. This is a tremendous response, and we're very
grateful to you all for participating. Thank you very much!
## ESP responds to USPTO consultation
In addition to the supporter-submitted messages, our anti-software-
patent campaign, End Software Patents, has sent a message to the USPTO
after analyzing the court decision.
The message, which was published on the campaign website,
focuses on three key points: "Limiting tests for 'processes/methods'
apply also to 'machines'", "Machines must be particular to pass the
machine-or-transformation test" and "Concepts which can be reduced
to math are algorithms".
## The LibrePlanet community celebrates Software Freedom Day
Saturday, September 18th, was Software Freedom Day. The FSF celebrated
the event online with the LibrePlanet community, encouraging activists
participating in other events around the world to connect with each
other on the LibrePlanet wiki in a way that will make their work
continue throughout the year.
You can find lots of interesting projects on the wiki to contribute
to, including finding a LibrePlanet group in your area, creating your
own profile to let other people know what areas of free software you
are interested in, and creating pages for your the free software
programs and issues you're most passionate about.
## LibrePlanet featured resource: List of free software innovations
We are going to highlight one resource every month on LibrePlanet that
is interesting and useful and can use your help.
For this month, we are highlighting the new "List of free software
innovations" page. A list of innovations that were made in an
environment of free software can be very helpful to show the
advancement software freedom has made, and it can be an easy-to-use
reference to argue in favor of free software.
If you can recall some innovations related to free software, please
cite them in the "List of free software innovations".
## ACTA Action: Call on Obama to end the secrecy, reject the treaty
We delivered over 4,000 of your signatures on our ACTA petition to
negotiators meeting in Washington, D.C.
The US government still hasn't gotten the message. President Obama and
his administration are blocking release of the full text of ACTA. They
don't want the public to know what the negotiators are up to, because
they know we wouldn't stand for it.
## Videos of GNU Hackers Meeting in the Hague available
Videos of the talks from the GNU Hackers Meeting in the Hague are now
available. This meeting took place on 24-25 July at "Revelation
Hackspace", prior to the GNOME GUADEC conference, and featured a
workshop on GNUnet, a framework for free secure networking and
## Free Form: Free Software News
FSF Campaigns intern Molly de Blanc briefly captures a week in free
software. Richard Stallman visited representatives of the European
Patent Office giving a presentation in Australia concerning software
patents. Trisquel released their newest LTS version, codename:
Taranis. The chief architect of Apple's compiler group answered a
question about the upstream potential of their work on the GNU
## GNU Spotlight with Karl Berry
To get announcements of most new GNU packages, subscribe to the info-gnu
mailing list: <http://lists.gnu.org/mailman/listinfo/info-gnu>. Nearly
all GNU software is available from <http://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/>, or
preferably one of its mirrors (<http://www.gnu.org/prep/ftp.html>). You
can use the url <http://ftpmirror.gnu.org/> to be automatically
redirected to a (hopefully) nearby and up-to-date mirror.
This month we welcome Marek Sapota as maintainer of the new package
websocket4j, and Luke Leighton as maintainer of the new package
Several GNU packages are looking for maintainers and other assistance.
Please see <http://www.gnu.org/server/takeaction.html#unmaint> if you'd
like to help. The general page on how to help GNU is at
<http://www.gnu.org/help/help.html>. To submit new packages to GNU, see
As always, please feel free to write to me, <firstname.lastname@example.org>, with any
GNUish questions or suggestions for future installments.
## Richard Stallman's speaking schedule
2010-10-01 | Copyright vs. Community
2010-10-05 | The Danger of Software Patents
2010-10-06 | Free Software in Ethics and in Practice
2010-10-11 | Free Software in Ethics and in Practice
2010-10-12 | Copyright vs. Community
2010-10-12 | Free Software in Ethics and in Practice
2010-10-14 | Free Software in Ethics and in Practice
2010-10-19 | Free Software in Ethics and in Practice
2010-10-21 | Free Software in Ethics and in Practice
2010-10-21 | Copyright vs. Community
## Other free software events
2010-11-05 | GNU get-together at FSCONS 2010
### Take action with the FSF
Contributions from thousands of individual members enable the FSF's
work. You can contribute by joining at <http://www.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
I'm an FSF member -- Help us support software freedom!
The FSF is also always looking for volunteers
(<http://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 campaign section
(<http://www.fsf.org/campaigns>) and take action on software patents,
DRM, free software adoption, OpenDocument, RIAA and more.
The Free Software Supporter is edited by FSF volunteer Osama Khalid.
Copyright © 2010 Free Software Foundation, Inc.
This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-No
Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. To view a copy of this
license, visit <http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/3.0/us/> or
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