Richard Stallman: Free Software Newsletter Issue 31 June 2012

IO Newsletter Free Software
Richard Stallman

Free Software Supporter

Issue 51, June 2012


  • Stop software patents in Europe
  • Two job openings on the FSF campaigns team
  • FSF recommendations for free operating system distributions considering Secure Boot
  • GNU GPLv3 turns 5
  • Dear Microsoft: is not a “gambling site”
  • FSF's new operations assistant
  • Emacs Reference mugs are back!
  • I have some big shoes to fill
  • Introducing our new copyright and licensing associate
  • World IPv6 Day
  • April 2012 Trip to Tunisia: Photos from Tunis and Monastir
  • Why games matter to free software and free culture
  • LibrePlanet featured resource: Defective by Design
  • GNU spotlight with Karl Berry
  • Richard Stallman's speaking schedule and other FSF events
  • Thank GNUs!
  • Take action with the FSF!

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Complete newsletter below the line.

URGENT: Kill ACTA (2012-06-30)

On June 25th, the European Union Parliamentary committee voted to reject the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA). This signifies a major blow to ACTA, but its standing in the EU still comes down to the European Parliament vote scheduled for July 4th.

Help kill ACTA once and (hopefully) for all! Contact Members of European Parliament today.

Stop software patents in Europe (2012-06-28)

The European Parliament will vote on July 4th 2012 for a regulation on the unitary patent. This project could introduce software patents in Europe.

April, which promotes and defend Free Software in France and Europe, is proposing a set of amendments aiming to bring a legal certainty to the regulation and to fix the political issue of the governance of the European patent system.

You can help by calling Members of the European Parliaments (MEPs) in order for them to vote these amendments.

Two job openings on the FSF campaigns team

The Free Software Foundation (FSF), a Massachusetts 501(c)(3) charity with a worldwide mission to protect freedoms critical to the computer-using public, seeks two motivated and organized tech-friendly Boston-based individuals to be its full-time campaigns managers.

Applications must be received by Monday, July 23rd, 2012.

FSF recommendations for free operating system distributions considering Secure Boot (2012-06-30)

We have been working hard the last several months to stop Restricted Boot, a major threat to user freedom, free software ideals, and free software adoption. Under the guise of security, a computer afflicted with Restricted Boot refuses to boot any operating systems other than the ones the computer distributor has approved in advance. Restricted Boot takes control of the computer away from the user and puts it in the hands of someone else. This is distinct from Secure Boot, where the user has full control over the system.

Recently, two popular GNU/Linux distributions have announced their plans to support Secure Boot. In this article, we review their plans, and lay out our current strategy for addressing the threats and difficulties posed by this new technology for the free software movement. We find any approach that requires users to trust Microsoft or any proprietary software company unacceptable, and urge distributions to pursue other solutions.

GNU GPLv3 turns 5 (2012-06-29)

The GNU General Public License version 3 turns five; Eben Moglen states, “GPLv3 anticipated the issues of today and will help us deal with the challenges of tomorrow.”

Dear Microsoft: is not a “gambling site” (2012-06-22)

We strongly suggest you avoid using proprietary “network security” software from Microsoft. If you need to provide evidence to someone else to illustrate why using such software is a bad idea, feel free to use us as an example. If your workplace uses the software currently, please point to this post and ask them to drop it. Proprietary security software is an oxymoron — if the user is not fundamentally in control of the software, the user has no security.

If Microsoft's “reputation” database can't tell the difference between a gambling site and an independently audited registered nonprofit public-interest charity founded almost 30 years ago, it is certainly doing you and your business more harm than good.

FSF's new operations assistant (2012-06-30)

Hello, I'm Chrissie Himes, the new operations assistant, and I'm excited to officially be with the Free Software Foundation. I handle sales, donations, and general office operations. I came to free software via my interest, or rather, my frustration with the music industry.

Emacs Reference mugs are back! (2012-06-21)

The GNU Emacs Reference mugs are back! These ceramic mugs feature a two-color Emacs logo as well as a handy Emacs quick-reference guide. Like our Emacs Reference cards, these mugs feature all the commands needed to dive right into using Emacs.

Also, we have version 24 of the Emacs Manual coming out in print later this summer. To make room we've discounted our older editions, version 22 and version 23.3, to $15 and $30, respectively.

I have some big shoes to fill (2012-06-12)

Joshua Gay is the new licensing and compliance manager at the FSF.

I'm sad to announce that I will no longer be able to work alongside Brett Smith, who served as the FSF's licensing and compliance engineer since 2007, but whom I first worked with at the FSF a decade ago when we both were interns for a summer. Brett has moved on to work with the World Wide Web Consortium and we wish him the best of luck! And, I hope you will all wish me the best of luck as I am changing roles here at the FSF. I am moving from campaigns manager to the newly re-branded, “licensing and compliance manager.”

Introducing our new copyright and licensing associate (2012-06-12)

Donald Robertson, III is the new copyright and licensing associate at the FSF.

My time at the Free Software Foundation over the past year and a half has been split between handling copyright assignments and running general office operations. Handling contracts with large corporations and shipping packages of stickers and t-shirts was always sort of an odd pairing for me. This was never an ideal situation, but rather the result of us trying to do as much as we could with our resources. During our winter fundraiser this past year, we asked you to help us do more. Happily, the community took up this challenge and entrusted us with more resources to better aid free software.

World IPv6 Day (2012-06-06)

June 6th, 2012 was World IPv6 Day. The most important GNU/FSF sites are available on native IPv6.

The FSF and the GNU project participated. Some of our most important services have been available on native IPv6 for a few months now.

April 2012 Trip to Tunisia: Photos from Tunis and Monastir (2012-06-05)

RMS was in Tunisia in late April and early May. Here are some photographic excerpts.

Why games matter to free software and free culture

FSF member, GNU MediaGoblin maintainer and Liberated Pixel Cup organizer Chris Webber writes on the importance of games in free software, discussing everything from his personal motivations, to the disturbing increase of proprietary and DRM-laden games and game platforms targeting GNU/Linux.

LibrePlanet featured resource: Defective by Design

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 Defective by Design group, which is a place for supporters of our campaign against DRM to share materials they've created and participate in shaping new campaign actions. Please stop by and help the fight against DRM — especially on ebooks!

Do you have a suggestion for next month's featured resource? Let us know at

GNU Spotlight with Karl Berry

New GNU releases as of June 26, 2012:

autogen-5.16.1 automake-1.12.1 bison-2.5.1 ddrescue-1.16 denemo-0.9.4 emacs-24.1 gcc-4.7.1 glibc-2.16 gnuhealth-1.6.2 gnunet-0.9.3 gnutls-2.12.20 gnutls-3.0.20 gworkspace-0.9.1 gzip-1.5 help2man-1.40.10 icecat-12.0 libmicrohttpd-0.9.20 librejs-4.7.1 libtasn1-2.13 octave-3.6.2 parallel-20120622 rcs-5.8.1 solfege-3.20.6 tramp-2.2.5

To get announcements of most new GNU releases, subscribe to the info-gnu mailing list: Nearly all GNU software is available from, or preferably one of its mirrors ( You can use the url to be automatically redirected to a (hopefully) nearby and up-to-date mirror.

Several GNU packages are looking for maintainers and other assistance. Please see if you'd like to help. The general page on how to help GNU is at To submit new packages to GNU, see

As always, please feel free to write to me,, with any GNUish questions or suggestions for future installments.

Richard Stallman's speaking schedule and other events

For event details, as well as to sign-up to be notified for future events in your area, please visit .

Richard Stallman has the following events in July:

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.

Thank GNUs!

We appreciate everyone who donates to the Free Software Foundation, but we'd like to give special recognition to the folks who have donated $500 or more in the last month.

This month, a big Thank GNU to:

  • Christopher Webber
  • Vivekanand Maddali
  • Robert L. McDonald
  • Jean-Christophe Vaugeois
  • Douglas Hauge

You can add your name to this list by donating at

Take action with the FSF

Contributions from thousands of individual members enable the FSF's work. You can contribute by joining at 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 signature like:

I'm an FSF member — Help us support software freedom!

The FSF is also always looking for volunteers ( 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 ( and take action on software patents, DRM, free software adoption, OpenDocument, RIAA and more.


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