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MEPs for more public sector open source use

FSFE logoThe European Parliament adopted its report “Towards a Digital Single Market” in response to the European Commission’s Digital Single Market strategy in mid-January, the Free Software Foundation Europe FSFE) reports.

The FSFE is pleased the Parliament took an affirmative attitude towards the increased use of free software and its importance to digital single market.

In particular it was pleased with the following:

  • Paragraph 89 considers that software providers “should better promote the security advantages of open source software”.
  • Paragraph 110 urges the European Commission and the Council to “increase the share of free and open source software and its reuse in and between public administrations as a solution to increase interoperability”.
  • Paragraph 125 calls for “the increased use of free and open source software, particularly in educational establishments and public administrations”.

However, at the same time the report notes that the ability to license standard-essential patents under FRAND licensing terms fosters innovation and preserves research, development and standardisation incentives, even though these licensing practices are harmful to free software.

The FSFE nevertheless welcomes the report’s adoption and calls on the Commission to follow the Parliament’s recommendations when pursuing the Digital Single Market initiatives.