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France Hostile To Open Source Software? 524

AdamWeeden writes "According to the Free Software Foundation of France the French Department of Culture is telling free (as in speech) software providers that 'You will be required to change your licenses ... You shall stop publishing free software,' and warn they are ready 'to sue free software authors who will keep on publishing source code.'" From the post: "It appears that publishing Free Software giving access to culture is about to become a counterfeiting criminal offence. Will SACEM sue France Télécom R&D research labs for having published Maay and Solipsis (P2P pieces of software used to exchange data)? Up to this point, the rather technical debate surrounding the issues addressed by DADVSI bill (copyright and neighbouring rights in the information society) makes one ask: Just how much control do the Big Players in the field of culture want to seize? It now looks like years of quibbling have put an end to compromises." More information on the DADVSI bill is available at Infos-du-net.com. They've come a long way since last year.
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France Hostile To Open Source Software?

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  • by DiscoBobby ( 196458 ) * on Friday December 02, 2005 @05:08PM (#14168936)
    Because Microsoft France surely just made one.
  • by BJZQ8 ( 644168 ) on Friday December 02, 2005 @05:09PM (#14168940) Homepage Journal
    Nice to see that the US doesn't have a monopoly on loony government agencies and legislation...that's obviously in the public domain.
    • Nice to see that the US doesn't have a monopoly on loony government agencies and legislation...that's obviously in the public domain.

      France is such an enigmatic country, you may consider there's probably a trade union of programmers in close-source shops who feel threatened and therefore want the government to protect their jobs.

      I keep expecting France to collapse from it's own inertia, but it does seem to keep on truckin'

    • You thought the US was the only one? Name a country that doesn't.
    • Suddenly the loony phrase "freedom fries" doesn't seem loony afterall.

    • by SatanicPuppy ( 611928 ) <Satanicpuppy@NOSPAM.gmail.com> on Friday December 02, 2005 @05:28PM (#14169160) Journal
      Yea, we tried to patent it, but the prior art was overwhelming.

    • Instead of giving the software away for free, by all means, sell it. But then, you can take advantage of a very common commercial gimmick, the big players have come to rely on: the mail-in rebate.

      The open source community can develop the first commercial entity to offer 100% rebates. Or, forget the mail-in stuff altogether - make it an instant rebate at the time of purchase.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday December 02, 2005 @05:09PM (#14168942)
    Toute votre base sont appartiennent à nous
    il n'y aura aucun logiciel libre en France !
  • Interesting (Score:2, Interesting)

    It's interesting to see that while people rag on America all the time for being a bunch of corporate shills, we are very friendly to OSS, the Gov't even makes its own publicly available (think World Wind, SELinux), and OSS adoption is high. Meanwhile, our french friends are hostile to it. And they say OSS is a liberal thing.
    • Hey, maybe the people who started calling them "freedom fries" just did so too early and for the wrong reason. :)
    • Re:Interesting (Score:3, Insightful)

      by node 3 ( 115640 )
      It's interesting to see that while people rag on America

      When America is in the wrong, it's the patriotic duty of all Americans to criticize America that she might right herself.

      all the time for being a bunch of corporate shills

      I assume you are referring to Congress. If so, are you saying they aren't a bunch of corporate shills?

      Meanwhile, our french friends are hostile to it.

      In this one instance. Albeit, this appears to be quite a doozy of an instance. There's a difference between consistently and systematic
    • Re:Interesting (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Yartrebo ( 690383 )
      French people have no hate of Linux. There are even several French distros available for those Frenchmen who cannot stand to buy US products. The adoption rate might not be as high as in Sweden or Brazil, but it beats the USs. Any Linux opposition in the country can generally be blamed on the right wing, big media friendly government.

      The US, on the other hand, has neither much government support or private support of open source software. We're down there with India in terms of open source contributions per
  • by tor528 ( 896250 ) on Friday December 02, 2005 @05:09PM (#14168946) Homepage
    When has France ever been hostile towards something and then come out on top?
    • by b0bby ( 201198 ) on Friday December 02, 2005 @05:27PM (#14169148)
      When has France ever been hostile towards something and then come out on top?

      What about Greenpeace [wikipedia.org]?
      • LPayed 6.5 million
        Made New zealand rapid about anti-nuclear.
        They where anti nuclear before the sinking, buit the pretty much cemented it.
        Finally:
        "Operation SATANIC was a public relations disaster.."
        you think? who the hell allowed it to be called that? I mean, it could have brought world peace, and that name still would have made it a public relations nightmare.
    • 1066. Battle of Hastings.

      Or, if you prefer, any time an American tourist spends time in France.

      "According to a poll, who are the rudest people in Europe?"
      "American tourists..?"

    • > When has France ever been hostile towards something and then come out on top?

      It's interesting to examine recent history and see exactly why the French military is laughed at so much:

      In the last hundred years, there have been three major military operations France was involved in. The first was WWI, where France (and its allies) stopped the invasion launched by Germany (and its allies), fought for a few years, and eventually won. So that's not the reason.

      The second major war was WWII, where the

  • That's it! (Score:4, Funny)

    by masnare ( 922658 ) on Friday December 02, 2005 @05:09PM (#14168947)
    I was on the fence, but now they've done it. I am officially giving up croissants, snobbery, and disdain for other people. I just can't be associated with them anymore.
  • Bah. (Score:3, Informative)

    by spikestabber ( 644578 ) <spike@NoSpAm.spykes.net> on Friday December 02, 2005 @05:10PM (#14168960) Homepage
    There goes VLC.
  • by planetoid ( 719535 ) on Friday December 02, 2005 @05:10PM (#14168961)
    French programmers could just develop their software under assumed pen-names and publish their free software on servers overseas outside of the French government's jurisdiction. It's a sucky law if it passes, but if it does pass, I'm eager as hell to see it broken en masse to the point of it being unenforceable. Stereotypes about surrendering notwithstanding, of course...
  • that would explain the fear. "vee are open source. vee have vays of making you, um, compiling you, um, vee have vays...of...using your source."
  • "It appears that publishing Free Software giving access to culture is about to become a counterfeiting criminal offence."

    What is "access to culture"? The article specifically uses two P2P file-sharing programs as examples. Is this about pirating media (music, movies), or about publishing source code?

    • by fatboy ( 6851 ) on Friday December 02, 2005 @05:19PM (#14169052)
      It appears to be about copyright infringement. I am sure the comment was about Open Source P2P software, not ALL Open Source software.
    • What is "access to culture"? The article specifically uses two P2P file-sharing programs as examples. Is this about pirating media (music, movies), or about publishing source code?

      You are probably right, and Free Software is just instrumentalized here. If I read the proposed law correctly (my French isn't that good, and it's French legalese), it's about DRM software, and similar to the anti-circumvention provisions of the DMCA, or contributory infringement for publishing DRM-less software (Grokster). Neit
    • by ishark ( 245915 ) on Friday December 02, 2005 @05:28PM (#14169159)
      The information on the provided links is fuzzy, messy and scaremongering at its best. If you read the link to the actual proposal, it says that it plans to put on the same level as counterfaiting the creation of software which can be used to exchanged copyrighted data. The text is so vague that all IM software, IRC, news and even Windows itself (shares) will fall under it. It has nothing to do with free software licenses as much as I can read.... (BTW France's government is moving slowly to free software - OO, Mandriva, etc.) and I don't understand why FSF France would word their article that way.
      They say it's based on some rejected american law called CBDTPA (check wikipedia for a description) which aimed at disallowing all non DRM-enabled technology.
  • The summary talks about SACEM. The article talks about SNEP and SCPP. There are several more acronyms in the article. These are apparently well-known enough in France, but could somebody tell the rest of us who these groups are? Or would that be giving away too much of France's culture?
  • I predict France surrendering to open source within the next week.
  • jesus fucking christ (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday December 02, 2005 @05:12PM (#14168989)
    from TFA:
    SNEP and SCPP have told Free Software authors: "You will be required to change your licenses." SACEM add: "You shall stop publishing free software," and warn they are ready "to sue free software authors who will keep on publishing source code" should the "VU/SACEM/BSA/FA Contents Department"[1] bill proposal pass in the Parliament.

    [...]

    Notes about the organisations

    SACEM is the main company dealing with collective copyright management for music in France. French RIAA.

    SNEP (Syndicat National de l'Édition Phonographique, national syndicate of phonographic publishing), was created in 1922. Spokesman for its 48 members, it represents them towards the government, the MP, the administration, other professional bodies, the media and the public.

    SCPP (Société Civile des Producteurs Phonographiques, civil company of phonographic editors), gathers the money collected towards the users of phonograms and videomusic users and redistributes it to its members (more than 800 producers, including many independent producers and the main international companies such as Sony BMG, EMI, Universal, and Warner). It weighs more than 80% of the copyrights perceived by the French producers.
    So... not the French Government. Fuckwit submitter, fuckwit eds.
    • by kidgenius ( 704962 ) on Friday December 02, 2005 @05:29PM (#14169173)
      But....it is the government. Right now SNEP and SCPP don't have any legal legs to stand on. But, if the DADVSI bill gets passed, then the SNEP and SCPP will be able to sue. So, yes, the government is considering passing a bill which would allow these organizations to sue the free software authors.
      • by vagabond_gr ( 762469 ) on Friday December 02, 2005 @06:20PM (#14169637)
        So, yes, the government is considering passing a bill which would allow these organizations to sue the free software authors.

        Agreed, but saying "the goverment is examining a bill proposed by the french MPAA" is very different from saying "French Department of Culture is telling free (as in speech) software providers that 'You will be required to change your license".

        Especially when you quote an article that says "SNEP and SCPP have told Free Software authors:", you can't quote an FSF article and replace "MPAA" by "the Goverment" in an article posted on Slashdot's main page, its fucking crazy!

        That's the image of the media these days, but I expected something better from slashdot.
    • ready "to sue free software authors who will keep on publishing source code" should the "VU/SACEM/BSA/FA Contents Department"[1] bill proposal pass in the Parliament.

      See the [1] there? In TFA it refers to this [fsffrance.org]. According to the Google Translation [google.com], the problem is a proposed amendment being added (seemingly at the last minute; damn goofy translations) to a bill called DADVSI which is nearly ready to pass. In American terms, we call this a "rider" and it's how all the devious crap gets through the system.

      So
      • The summary attributes the quote to the "French Department of Culture". However, according to the press release, it was these private RIAA-like organizations that made the quoted statement and threatened to sue people should the bill pass. FSFFrance released the press release, so it's not really clear when or where it was said if at all. So, yes, the French legislature is considering passing a law prohibiting the distribution of source code for software that could lead to copyright infringement, but the
  • Actually... (Score:5, Informative)

    by Bullfish ( 858648 ) on Friday December 02, 2005 @05:13PM (#14168992)
    The proposed prohibition is specifically against open source software that allows you to defeat drm, not open source software in general.

    Still a bad trend in any event
    • Re:Actually... (Score:3, Interesting)

      by interiot ( 50685 )
      Is closed-source DRM-defeating software more legal somehow? Why was open source mentioned at all?
    • Re:Actually... (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Ender Ryan ( 79406 )
      Assuming that you're correct, that's already illegal in the United States, not matter the license of the software.

      But why is open source code even mentioned? I don't understand the connection. And the original article is vague and shitty.

    • Re:Actually... (Score:3, Informative)

      by Renaud ( 6194 )
      The proposed prohibition is specifically against open source software that allows you to defeat drm, not open source software in general.

      No, it's worse than that.
      It makes DRM mandatory in all software that enables P2P file transmission (that includes IM), and multimedia streaming.
      Open Source software is out of the game de facto
    • Re:Actually... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Cyclops ( 1852 ) <rms@1 4 0 7 . o rg> on Friday December 02, 2005 @06:52PM (#14169902) Homepage
      From what little I understood...

      Imagine you use Firefox to download a DRM'ed Windows Media Video file.

      Firefox would have to respect the copy prohibition embedded in that .WMV file, if it doesn't, it would be illegal to use it.

      Now imagine Firefox DOES respect the copy prohibition. Since Firefox is Free Software, it can be modified so it WON'T respect the prohibition.

      As such, it would be illegal to use it.

      These two situations are an example of what that law would turn illegal.

      If you dig to a lower level, maybe the network card driver should analise the content, I think.
  • Mandriva? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by digidave ( 259925 ) on Friday December 02, 2005 @05:14PM (#14168996)
    This, were it to pass, would effectively shut out France and French OSS developers while not changing a damn thing anywhere else. OSS will still be available to anyone in France who wishes to download it, but France will have been cut out of a large and quickly growing segment of the tech industry. The most popular server OS, most popular web server, Internet DNS, and most popular MTA, among other software, will no longer be legal in France. How will they even route their Internet traffic?

    Have they thought about this at all?
    • Extraterritoriality (Score:3, Interesting)

      by overshoot ( 39700 )
      This, were it to pass, would effectively shut out France and French OSS developers while not changing a damn thing anywhere else. OSS will still be available to anyone in France who wishes to download it, but France will have been cut out of a large and quickly growing segment of the tech industry.

      It would indeed affect everyone else. France has, in the past, had no reservations about enforcing its own censorship laws outside of their borders. Put another way: if you can somehow get access to something

  • Freedom fries?

    Wait...That won't work, since it's about free-as-in-freedom software...

    Free-as-in-beer fries!
  • by the eric conspiracy ( 20178 ) on Friday December 02, 2005 @05:16PM (#14169030)
    What can you expect from a nation that has 300 kinds of cheese?

  • In Other News (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward
    ... The French Government is preparing a referendum to see if French citizens are awake yet.

    From what can be gathered, the majority of French went to sleep about the time that Renault and Peugeot withdrew their products from the US market because their cars were not competitive, and judged to be too unreliable and lacking in innovation.

    Sorry. I shouldn't be so snide. I actually LIKE most of the French people I know. The trouble is, their Government wants to have its own planet. Ain't gonna happen.

    You si
  • Besides the obvious Mandriva, does anyone know of any other projects which might me affected?
  • Until the DMCA becomes global. Even then they still wont stop anyways so it doesn't matter.
    http://www.videolan.org/eucd.html [videolan.org]
    • During the night of 22nd to 23rd December 2005, while everybody is preparing for Christmas, the French Parliament will rule about the "DADVSI" law. This vote will be made with minimal discussion, as an "emergency" has been declared on this law.
  • Sell it for a dollar and include a dollar rebate and call it Frenchware instead of Freeware
  • ... for you have just wounded part of your economy. It may be a small part of the French economy but it's all Euros lost to neighbouring countries that will be quite happy to take that business.
  • ...French Parliament considers campaign against egalité, fraternité.

    News at 11.
  • That'll pretty much signal the end of the French tech sector.

    This is BIZARRE. If anyplace should be supporting open source software it's France. As anti-American as France generally is, this move will hand a huge present to the American company Microsoft. ...or maybe they have some strange idea that this will bring the riots to an end.
  • WTF does that even mean?
  • What's their beef? What is their complaint? I've read the article and I still can't understand it. What the hell does "giving access to culture" mean?
  • This seems to effect things that may present "french cultural content", so, in this sense, it is specific to media, or to publishing software that does things with media. This makes me think of other similar nonsense like the broadcast flag.

    But, looking on the bright side, weren't those mplayer people a bunch of arrogant French coders?! :). Of course the secret to being French is a matter of loving the two W's and having the correct amount of arrogance (the secret being there is no correct amount that i

  • by bastardadmin ( 660086 ) on Friday December 02, 2005 @05:31PM (#14169192) Journal
    Ça c'est fucké...

    That is the most fubar'd proposed bit of IP legislation I have ever heard...
    If you want to give free access to your own IP, why the devil should it be against the law?

    This is bizarre... I cannot think of an industry outside music and movies that would even think of lobbying for such legislation in any nation... Hell, Wall Street uses a lot of OSS, and I imagine that the Euro-zone financial giants do as well.

    This is quite possibly the most myopic bit of IP legislation I have ever seen.
  • Wow (Score:5, Insightful)

    by moonbender ( 547943 ) <moonbender@g[ ]l.com ['mai' in gap]> on Friday December 02, 2005 @05:42PM (#14169309)
    I didn't think it was possible, but seeing all these replies makes me kind of ashamed of being part of the Slashdot community. I mean, occasional trolls are one thing, but more than hundred posts of fresh new jokes and insightful rants about France, that's just really embarassing. Signal to noise was never this bad. And the only on-topic comments by people who bothered to read the article came down to this being sort of a non-issue.
  • by this great guy ( 922511 ) on Friday December 02, 2005 @05:49PM (#14169373)

    Let me tell you that the editorial's title ("France Hostile To Open Source Software?") is very misleading for a very simple reason: the anti Free Software statements have been made by the SNEP and SCPP, which are --guest what-- 2 lobbying groups created by various music companies. Here is a small list of companies belonging to those groups: Sony BMG, EMI, Universal, Warner Music France, Walt Disney Company, etc. Complete lists can be found on their websites:

    Those 2 lobbying groups are obviously anti-P2P (and they say it clearly on their respective websites) and that explains totally why they are so anti Free Software, knowing that BitTorrent as well as other popular P2P tools are Free Softwares. But in no way whatsoever have the French in general, or the France Government, made any anti Free Software statements. We all remember [slashdot.org] those various stories [slashdot.org] that prove quite the contrary !

    As a supporter of Free Software, and french citizen, I am quite sad to see this story posted on Slashdot. It just makes people have a bad opinion about us :(

    • I wouldnt worry. I dont think a single article will be enough to sway anyone's opinion on the populace of an entire country. Every country has wealthy fools who make decisions they shouldnt be making. In this regard, America is quite renowned.
  • by sbwoodside ( 134679 ) <sbwoodside@yahoo.com> on Friday December 02, 2005 @06:02PM (#14169482) Homepage
    My own translations.

    from http://www.infos-du-net.com/actualite/5760-loi-DAD VSI.html [infos-du-net.com] :

    The law covers "the act of circumventing technical measures (of protection) or making available methods permitting such circumvention, understood that these methods have a limited commercial purpose or a limited use for purposes other than circumvention."

    So, the law, if passed, will make it illegal to circumvent these protections, to make software that is capable of circumventing or that makes it easier to circumvent, its possession, promotion of such a system, communication for the same purpose, all with a penalty of 300 000 euros and 3 years in prison.

    from http://www.infos-du-net.com/actualite/5837-logicie ls-libres.html [infos-du-net.com] :

    "You will stop the publication of software [...] [We are ready to] pursue the authors of Free software who continue to divulge their source code [...]". On 18 nov 2005, at the Culture ministry, the SACEM took the world to court.

    SACEM is attacking Free software? This is not a fantasy, it's a reality supported by SNEP and SCPP, two other powerful defenders of music and the rights of authors in France. But where is the connection between these different guardians of culture and software? The answer is simply the vote on the amendment "VU/SACEM/BSA/FT Division Contenus" of the DADVSI law that we've talked so much about these last few weeks.

    [...]

    Pressure on the government:

    The last meeting of the Commission Sirinelli of the CSPLA (superior advisors on intellectual property) finally ended in an agitated debate with three powerful organizations opposed against the advocates for Free software.

    For Christophe Espern, the representative of Creative Commons France and co-founder of EUCD.INFO, the debate was nonsensical. "How can people pretend to defend culture and at the same time seek to stop the only software that allows everyone to access it? In my opinion, the contradiction is obvious: their intention is to control the public; culture is just a pretext."

    But for SNEP and SCPP the objective is simple and clear: "You will change your licenses".

    For whatever reason, the government is maintaining that the adoption of this bill is "urgent", which brings it to the forefront of debate and gives it priority treatment. As far as why it's so urgent - some people are asking why it's so urgent to pass a plan on intellectual property when the social issues related to the riots requires a national debate - nothing seems to justify this sudden interest in a subject unless it's the economic pressure of these powerful groups.

    The amendment didn't have to be proposed immediately, but a special meeting was held on Nov 25, and the decision now rests in the hands of the Parliament.

    *** This post is under CC-BY. Please feel free to edit/improve it***
  • The SlashDUPE effect (Score:5, Informative)

    by leereyno ( 32197 ) on Friday December 02, 2005 @06:05PM (#14169511) Homepage Journal
    This isn't the first time I've seen someone submit something that is a gross misrepresentation of the truth.

    The French government is NOT attacking free software. Rather groups within the entertainment industry are attacking P2P software that is distributed for free. This is a copyright infringement case. The fact that the industry goons are attacking free software is incidental. What is particularly telling is the way that this article is written. The author talks about "access to culture" when what he's really talking about is the ability to freely violate copyright law. Someone who wasn't paying close attention might mistakenly assume that the "culture" in question is in fact the free software that is under attack. I'm sure that this confusion is quite intentional.

    The slashdot editors seem to be vulnerable to propaganda that plays upon their own fears. I could probably create a fake site with a story declaring that the RIAA had begun hiring contract killers to execute the defendants in their copyright suits and slashdot would publish a link to it.

    Forget the slashdot effect, cases like this deserve a name all their own, the SlashDUPE effect.

    Lee
    • by horza ( 87255 )
      The French government is NOT attacking free software.

      From the translation kindly provided below, "... government is maintaining that the adoption of this bill is "urgent"..."

      Rather groups within the entertainment industry are attacking P2P software that is distributed for free. This is a copyright infringement case. The fact that the industry goons are attacking free software is incidental.

      And so? It's not uncommon for governments to slip something so-called incidentally within another bill. The UK governme
  • I'm French Canadian (Score:3, Informative)

    by xutopia ( 469129 ) on Friday December 02, 2005 @06:13PM (#14169586) Homepage
    And I can understand French. The French article this is based on though is cryptic. It seems *they* are trying to lobby parliament to have some control over p2p programs. They want to have some form of control over all p2p programs (checking who downloads what, who makes what available) and would like to make it so that p2p programs cannot be open sourced so as to circumvent methods of stopping IP theft.
  • by Renaud ( 6194 ) on Friday December 02, 2005 @06:14PM (#14169597) Homepage
    The original poster is extremely confused, at best.

    What the story really is:

    - Content industry pressures Europe into having their own version of the american DMCA, the EUCD. It passes.
    - The EUCD, as a European directive, needs to be transcribed into every EU member state law.
    - France is late transcribing the EUCD into national law and gets fined several times about it.
    - The French government starts transcribing EUCD requirements into national law, and gets "friendly advice" about how to do it from (basically) Vivendi Universal and the (influential) french movie & arts industry, and none from the (non vocal and lower influence ) french tech & net industry.
    - The EUCD has mostly the same provisions as the DMCA (don't break DRMs, etc) , but the French content industry (backed by US DRM solutions vendors) wants to go further : make DRM support mandatory for basically all software that enables peer-to-peer file swapping, including audio streaming software (to plug the Stationripper hole)

    It is that step further (making DRM mandatory) which is inherently incompatible with Open Source software, and threatens to make things like Icecast illegal, that has brought up a stir.

    The bill is scheduled for parliament vote on December 22th. More info at http://eucd.info/ [eucd.info]
  • *ahem* (Score:5, Informative)

    by torstenvl ( 769732 ) on Friday December 02, 2005 @06:20PM (#14169627)
    Just so you know, France's government isn't liberal. Google "Jean-Marie Le Pen" for the historical details, but they basically had to choose between doppelgangern of Gee-Dub or Pat Buchannon, and chose Bush's counterpart.

    As for this legislation, it seems to outlaw free software using the internet, under the notion that free software can be modified to remove restrictions on what you do with copyrighted material.

    I feel disdain even saying these things to you. I doubt anyone here is familiar with the French Constitution, which requires laws to be reviewed by the Constitutional Committee before they can be enforced. The CC includes former Presidents and legal minds NOT involved in politics. It's kind of like a pre-emptive Supreme Court, and it would almost certainly not approve.

    Of course, the likelihood of this amendment passing is low. There was a fuss about this in the U.S., too, when DRM first started being a big issue.

    Trust me, the Ministry of Culture is laughed at by most of the government. Considering that the French government is encouraging open-source software (trust me, I know, I have worked with IT professionals in France on database conversions), and that OSS contributes to France's economy significantly, I very very seriously doubt this will be an issue.

    I guess maybe I should go on an America-bashing tirade because of your proposed amendments to variously ban gay marriage and rename yourselves "The United States of Earth."
    • Re:*ahem* (Score:3, Insightful)

      by stinerman ( 812158 )
      Just so you know, France's government isn't liberal. Google "Jean-Marie Le Pen" for the historical details, but they basically had to choose between doppelgangern of Gee-Dub or Pat Buchannon, and chose Bush's counterpart.

      Just so you know, Chirac is to the left of most Democrats in the USA. Hence the "liberal" moniker.
  • Online Petition (Score:5, Interesting)

    by vagabond_gr ( 762469 ) on Friday December 02, 2005 @06:24PM (#14169668)
    There is an online petition against the bill here [eucd.info]. It started today and there are already 2087 signatures by individuals and 40 by organisations. Go on and sign [eucd.info].
  • by Knaldgas ( 587891 ) on Friday December 02, 2005 @06:56PM (#14169929)
    Banning free software?

    This is actually quite funny, coming from a nation that, more than 200 years ago, revolted against the "elite" and demanded liberty and equality.
    Didn't they get it then?

  • by LWATCDR ( 28044 ) on Friday December 02, 2005 @07:17PM (#14170087) Homepage Journal
    Can anyone explain how this has anything to do with "Culture"?
    I guess we can soon mark France off the list of "free" countries. You can't publish your own software with source? What about websites since the "source" for XHTML, CSS, and HTML are by nature open?
    Will French websites soon be illegal?
  • Nope. (Score:5, Informative)

    by goldseries ( 932320 ) on Friday December 02, 2005 @08:40PM (#14170745) Journal
    This whole article is a misunderstanding. The French's press release in English was just poorly worded. When the original text is looked at it is obvious that the French are only instituting a DMCA of their own (sucks!). They are also banning open source software that is used to pirate. This is what we should really be complaining about. See article on techdirt for details. http://techdirt.com/articles/20051202/1451240_F.sh tml [techdirt.com]

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