The Free Software Foundation has announced the keynotes for its 2019 Libreplanet conference: Debian pioneer Bdale Garbee; Micky Metts from the MayFirst People Link Leadership Committee, Solidarity Economy Network and Agaric; Shuttleworth fellow Tarek Loubani who develops open source hardware, 3D printed medical equipment used in Gazan hospitals; and FSF founder Richard Stallman.
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Paul Brown writes, "The FSFE's 'Public Money? Public Code!' campaign wants to convince
lawmakers that software created with public funds should be made
available to the public under Free Software licences. Read the rest
If working as an EFF activist isn't your thing, perhaps helping to run the Free Software Foundation in Boston will be more to your liking? Read the rest
Writing in Wired, Richard Stallman -- founder of the Free Software Foundation, which puts the GNU in GNU/Linux -- writes about the relationship between software freedom and a free society. Proprietary software -- opaque to its users, liable to subversion for the purposes of governments and corporations -- is incompatible with a free, democratic society. The temptation to collect data, and, once collect it, to abuse it, is irresistible for the fallible humans who make up the state. Systems have to be designed to keep their users free and private -- there is no way to make people secure unless their tools are secure, too. Stallman sets out the various forms of surveillance and control, from no-fly lists to web-tracking, and proposes ways to make them safe for a free society. Read the rest
Kyre sez, "The Free Culture Foundation has posted a thorough response to the most common and misinformed defenses of the W3C's Extended Media Extensions (EME) proposal to inject DRM into HTML5. They join the EFF and FSF in a call to send a strong message to the W3C that DRM in HTML5 undermines the W3C's self-stated mission to make the benefits of the Web 'available to all people, whatever their hardware, software, network infrastructure, native language, culture, geographical location, or physical or mental ability.' The FCF counters the three most common myths by unpacking some quotes which explain that 1.) DRM is not about protecting copyright. That is a straw man. DRM is about limiting the functionality of devices and selling features back in the form of services. 2.) DRM in HTML5 doesn't obsolete proprietary, platform-specific browser plug-ins; it encourages them. 3.) the Web doesn't need big media; big media needs the Web.
There is also a new coalition of 27 internet freedom companies and groups standing up to the W3C."
Don’t let the myths fool you: the W3C’s plan for DRM in HTML5 is a betrayal to all Web users. Read the rest
John from the Free Software Foundation sez,
Hollywood is making yet another attempt to lock down the Web. Undeterred by SOPA's failure, Hollywood is conspiring with tech giants like Microsoft, Google, and Netflix to try to influence the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C). A proposal currently under consideration at W3C would *build accommodation for Digital Restrictions Management (DRM) into HTML itself.* The W3C's job is to keep the Web working for everyone; building DRM into HTML would be a dramatic departure from the NGO's mission.
Today a coalition, organized by the Free Software Foundation and including EFF and Creative Commons, released a joint letter to the W3C condemning the proposal. The coalition is also asking Web users to send a message to W3C by signing a petition.
The coalition says, "Ratifying EME would be an abdication of responsibility; it would harm interoperability, enshrine nonfree software in W3C standards and perpetuate oppressive business models. It would fly in the face of the principles that the W3C cites as key to its mission and it would cause an array of serious problems for the billions of people who use the Web."
I wrote about this in detail in the Guardian in March.
Keep DRM out of Web standards -- Reject the Encrypted Media Extensions (EME) proposal
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Kxra sez, "Defective by Design, the Free Software Foundation's campaign against DRM has just released a new graphic to mark DRM-free works on the web. The DRM-free label quickly communicates the DRM-free status of files, increases in value as more distributors adopt the label, and adds value to being DRM-free by linking to an informational page about DRM. The logo is already in use by O'Reilly, Momentum, the Pragmatic Bookshelf, and Magnatune. It is available in a few different styles with source files under CC-BY-SA 3.0."
New and improved label for DRM-free files
(Thanks, Kxra!) Read the rest
Holmes Wilson from the Free Software Foundation writes, "We're at a crucial moment in the fight against DRM. This year--thanks to the strength of the movement you've built and been a part of--we defeated DRM on music. But DRM on books, games, and other digital media is a bigger threat than ever. Meanwhile the Free Software Foundation, the organization behind Defective by Design, is engaged in a broader battle: fighting for our rights to control the technology we use by promoting free software. The FSF is a member-supported nonprofit. Please consider donating or becoming a member today. FSF membership is $10 a month or $5 a month for students.
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Defective By Design's Xmas DRM boycott -- 35 days and 35 products ...
Defective by Design pickets Vista launch in NYC - Boing Boing
Anti-DRM cards to stick in your Netflix envelopes from Defective ...
Prince rewards spendy fans with DRM-crippled downloads - Boing Boing
Boing Boing: Anti-DRM demonstrators in hazmat suits storm Bill ... Read the rest