Let’s monitor implementation of Free Software Policies!

How to sharpen the demand for public code across Europe and monitor progress with TEDective


For six years, the Free Software Foundation Europe has been calling with a broad alliance for publicly funded software to be published as Free Software. This initiative has become a great success: Our demand “Public Money? Public Code!” has found its way into government strategy papers, party programs, as well as coalition treaties, and is being discussed in public administrations across Europe.

At the same time, we see less progress than expected and vendor lock ins remain a crucial issue. Digital sovereignty is redefined bypassing Free Software. There is openwashing in publicly funded companies, and government projects in favour of Free Software remain empty words. Public statistics on the procurement of Free Software are largely unavailable.

It is therefore no longer enough to promote the idea of “Public Money? Public Code!”. We as the Free Software community should be even more vigilant than before – continuing to praise small steps in the right direction, but pointing out and criticising omissions and lack of implementation. We should become more like watchdogs.

In the talk we will look at some examples of lack of implementation of Free Software policies. We will discuss how we, as civil society, can identify such shortcomings and how to deal with them. We will present our initiative TEDective – a free-software solution that makes European public procurement data explorable for non-experts, aiming to provide you with a powerful tool to keep an eye on real progress towards “Public Money? Public Code!” across Europe.



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