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Issue 50, May 2012
Welcome to the Free Software Supporter, the Free Software Foundation's
monthly news digest and action update -- being read by you and 57,338
other activists. That's 1,039 more than last month!
Encourage your friends to subscribe and help us build an audience by
adding our subscriber widget to your web site.
Miss an issue? You can catch up on back issues at
Were it grounded in reality, Oracle's claim that copyright law gives
them proprietary control over any software that uses a particular
functional API would be terrible for free software and programmers
everywhere. It is an unethical and greedy interpretation created with
the express purpose of subjugating as many computer users as possible,
and is particularly bad in this context because it comes at a time
when the sun has barely set on the free software community's
celebration of Java as a language newly suitable for use in the free
Fortunately, the claim is not yet reality, and we hope Judge Alsup
will keep it that way.
Blizzard has released the long-awaited game Diablo 3 to much fanfare,
and yet to many gamers, much disappointment and frustration because of
the game's DRM system. It requires a permanent internet connection to
play -- moving much of the in-game interaction and logic to the
network. Blizzard is using Diablo 3 to operate an online auction
house, using real-world currency or in-game gold, which in turn can be
exchanged between players to purchase weapons, materials and upgrades
for your in-game character.
Friday, May 4th was the fourth International Day Against DRM, and wow
-- what a day! We were supported by our friends at the Electronic
Frontier Foundation, Creative Commons, the Accessible Computing
Foundation, Fight for the Future, APRIL, and our sister organizations,
FSF France, FSF India and FSF Europe.
We had a solid base of activist events all over the world -- from
Massachusetts to Spain, Florida, Japan, England, Portugal, and
more. These local events are especially important as they spread the
message by word of mouth -- DRM elimination crew members (that's you)
telling people in their local communities about the specific ways
defective technologies like DRM are disrupting their lives and taking
away their freedom.
We've added some new items to the guide to DRM-free living, including
music from They Might Be Giants and Radio Wonderland, and comedy from
Louis CK, Aziz Ansari, Jim Gaffigan, Richard Herring, Stewart Lee and
Simon Munnery, as well as ebooks from O'Reilly and Smashwords.
A well known company, Valve, that distributes nonfree computer games
with Digital Restrictions Management, recently announced it would
distribute these games for GNU/Linux. What good and bad effects can
How does this development affect users' freedom?
The next Competitiveness Council will be held today, May 31st.
François Hollande's government will be attending it for the first
time. April, the French free software group, calls upon the President
to take this opportunity to act against software patents and bring up
the flaws of the current unitary patent project.
We have some photographs of Richard's latest European trip, which
included a stop in Madrid, at the IES Arquitecto Ventura Rodríguez,
where four-hundred people came to hear him speak, on March 1st.
And at the National University of Singapore's School of Computing, on
March 13th, where three-to-four hundred people came to hear him speak.
Thanks to a generous donation by one of our supporters, we were able
to offer a limited set of GNU Emacs Reference mugs through the GNU
Press. Unfortunately, due to the incredible popularity of the mugs, we
have sold out our entire stock in less than 24 hours. We apologize for
More mugs are on their way, and if you would like to be first in line
to buy one, please join our GNU Press mailing list.
Software Freedom Conservancy, a non-profit that provides a home and a
broad range of services to free software projects, has announced a
unified effort among many of its member projects to ensure compliance
with their licenses. The effort brings together copyright holders,
developers, and users to ensure that the rights embodied in licenses
are fully upheld for all developers, users, and the general public.
The effort brings the Samba and Busybox projects together with a new
effort called the GPL Compliance Project for Linux Developers. This
new project is comprised of copyright holders in the kernel Linux who
have contributed to the project under its license, the GPLv2. These
seven copyright holders have formally asked Conservancy to engage in
compliance efforts for their copyrights in the kernel.
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 LibrePlanet Gaming Collective,
a group of free software activists organized around their enthusiasm
for video games. By gathering around free software video games, we are
furthering the ideals of free software and related issues as necessary
means for a free society.
If you're interested in playing free games, you should join the
Do you have a suggestion for next month's featured resource? Let us
know at firstname.lastname@example.org
New GNU releases as of May 31, 2012:
aris-1.7 autogen-5.16 coreutils-8.17 freefont-20120503 freeipmi-1.1.5
gcal-3.6.2 global-6.2.4 gmp-5.0.5 gnuhealth-1.6.1 gnutls-2.12.19
gsasl-1.8.0 guile-clutter-1.10.0 guile-gnome-platform-2.16.2 kawa-1.12
libgsasl-1.8.0 libidn-1.25 librejs-4.6 parallel-20120522 wdiff-1.1.2
To get announcements of most new GNU releases, subscribe to the
info-gnu mailing list:
Nearly all GNU software is available from http://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/,
or preferably one of its mirrors
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 Ian Dunn as the author and maintainer of the new
package GNU Aris, and Nala Ginrut as the new maintainer of GNU SXML,
now renamed and generalized to GNU XMLAT.
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,
As always, please feel free to write to me, email@example.com , with any
GNUish questions or suggestions for future installments.
In July 2012, Stallman will be Czech Republic, Germany and
Venezuela. See http://www.fsf.org/events/rms-speeches.html for
details of future speeches.
Another event we'd like to draw your attention to is the 13th Libre
Software Meeting, in Geneva, Switzerland on July 7th. LSM is a
non-commercial cycle of conferences, round tables and practical
workshops based on Libre Software and its uses. Its aim is to provide
a platform for Libre Software users, developers and stakeholders.
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 Matt Lee, Campaigns Manager
Copyright © 2012 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
send a letter to Creative Commons, 171 Second Street, Suite 300, San
Francisco, California, 94105, USA.
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