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[FSF] Free Software Supporter -- Issue 6, July 2008
[FSF] Free Software Supporter -- Issue 6, July 2008
Mon, 14 Jul 2008 13:23:03 -0400
Thunderbird 188.8.131.52 (X11/20080501)
# Free Software Supporter
Issue 6, July 2008
Welcome to the Free Software Supporter, the Free Software Foundation's
monthly news digest and action update -- being read by you and 7,824
Encourage your friends to subscribe and help us build an audience by
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* Subscribe: <http://www.fsf.org/free-software-supporter>
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Miss an issue? You can catch up on back issues at
Multilingual? Send translations of the Supporter to <address@hidden>.
## In this issue
* It's not the Gates, it's the bars
* Act on ACTA!
* Fight the Canadian DMCA!
* Rhapsody and Naxos go DRM free
* Refusing Digital Monitoring Policies
* 5 reasons to avoid iPhone 3G
* autonomo.us activist group to focus on freedom in network services
* identi.ca is autonomo.us
* GNU spotlight with Karl Berry
* Richard Stallman's speaking schedule
* Take action!
### It's not the Gates, it's the bars
Originally published by BBC News, this essay by Richard Stallman,
> To pay so much attention to Bill Gates' retirement is missing the
> point. What really matters is not Gates, nor Microsoft, but the
> unethical system of restrictions that Microsoft, like many other
> software companies, imposes on its customers.
### Act on ACTA!
ACTA, the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, is a proposed
enforcement treaty between United States, and global coalition. Find
out more about how ACTA threatens free software, and join us in
### Fight the Canadian DMCA!
In mid-June, Canadian Industry Minister Jim Prentice introduced a bill
that BoingBoing's Cory Doctorow described as making it "flatly illegal
to break any kind of digital lock...". Canadian or not, you can take
action against the Canadian DMCA, read the full story.
### Rhapsody and Naxos go DRM free
Rhapsody and Naxos (an audiobook distributor) are now offering
DRM-free MP3 downloads. Customers are encouraged to put pressure on
these services to provide music and audiobooks in free formats
too. Read more:
### Refusing Digital Monitoring Policies
Bruce Schneier has brought a new form of Digital Restrictions
Management to our attention, "Digital Manners Policies," which,
according to him, may "control what you do and when you do it, and
[will] charge you repeatedly for the privilege whenever possible."
## 5 reasons to avoid iPhone 3G
* iPhone completely blocks free software. Developers must pay a tax to
Apple, who becomes the sole authority over what can and can't be on
* iPhone endorses and supports Digital Restrictions Management (DRM)
* iPhone exposes your whereabouts and provides ways for others to
track you without your knowledge.
* iPhone won't play patent- and DRM-free formats like Ogg Vorbis and
* iPhone is not the only option. There are better alternatives on the
horizon that respect your freedom, don't spy on you, play free media
formats, and let you use free software -- like the FreeRunner.
Share these reasons with your friends, family and colleagues, and read
## autonomo.us activist group to focus on freedom in network services
Building on its work with the GNU Affero General Public license,
the FSF convened a meeting to discuss the impact of network services
on free software and user freedom on March 16.
Today, attendees at that meeting launched autonomo.us, a new blog that
aims to publish essays and articles exploring the impact of network
services on user freedom. Additionally, the group published what it is
calling the "Franklin Street Statement on Freedom and Network
Services" where it lays out a summary of its thinking so far. While
the group is working independently and the statement does not yet
represent FSF policy, the FSF will continue to work closely with and
within the group, with FSF members, and with the free software
community to help inform and refine its strategy and continue to
provide leadership in regards to software freedom and network
* Autonomous homepage: <http://autonomo.us/>
* About Autonomous: <http://autonomo.us/about/>
* Franklin Street Statement:
## identi.ca is autonomo.us
Speaking of freedom in network services, identi.ca is a microblogging
service based on the Laconi.ca microblogging software, available under
the GNU Affero General Public License. Evan Prodromou, the lead
developer of Laconi.ca and a member of the autonomo.us effort, said "I
hope that it brings more attention to the issue of Free Network
Services, and sets a good example for how to build them."
If you sign up for an account, 'Subscribe' to our campaigns:
* BadVista.org -- <http://identi.ca/badvista>
* DefectiveByDesign.org -- <http://identi.ca/dbd>
* PlayOgg.org -- <http://identi.ca/playogg>
* GNU -- <http://identi.ca/gnu>
* Free Software Foundation -- <http://identi.ca/fsf>
## GNU Spotlight with Karl Berry
Here's the list of GNU releases for June (and early July):
See the packages' announcements, web pages
(http://www.gnu.org/software/PKGNAME) or the distributions themselves
for details. Nearly all are available from <http://ftp.gnu.org/gnu>, or
preferably one of the mirrors: <http://www.gnu.org/prep/ftp.html>.
To get announcements of most new GNU packages, subscribe to the info-gnu
mailing list <http://lists.gnu.org/mailman/listinfo/info-gnu>, which is
publicly archived <http://lists.gnu.org/pipermail/info-gnu>.
Some specific notes: the GNU mifluz package for an inverted text index
has been revived after many years, thanks to Sebastien Diaz; the new
GNU sovix package is a website revision system, by David Englund; and
the new GNU shmm package has utilities for working with shared memory,
by Jeannie Boffel.
Several GNU packages are still looking for maintainers.
Please see <http://www.gnu.org/server/takeaction.html#unmaint>.
Finally, I'd like to give a warm welcome to the other newly-dubbed GNU
maintainers this month: Kevin Harris (panorama), Joel Denny (bison), D
E Evans (rottlog), Jim Meyering & Ralf Wildenhues (vc-dwim), and Eric
Please feel free to write to me, <address@hidden>, with any GNUish
questions or suggestions for future installments.
## Richard Stallman's speaking schedule and other FSF speeches
* Free Software to Free Knowledge -- July 15th, Barcelona, Spain
* El Movimiento del Software Libre -- July 17th, Puerto la Cruz, Venezuela
* El Movimiento del Software Libre -- July 22nd, Caracas, Venezuela
* El Movimiento del Software Libre -- July 24th, Cúcuta, Colombia
### 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, Vista, OpenDocument, RIAA and more.
Copyright © 2008 Free Software Foundation, Inc.
Verbatim copying and distribution of this entire article are permitted
worldwide, without royalty, in any medium, provided this notice is
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