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Free/Libre alternatives to GAFAM's Internet: a review of French initiatives

Marianne Corvellec, April and Jonathan Le Lous, April

Project "De-google-ify Internet" aims at offering as many alternative services as possible to those threatening our digital freedoms. Google is not the only player there, even though it gave the project its name. Google Drive, Google Calendar, Skype, Dropbox, Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Doodle, Yahoo Groups, and many others, are extremely convenient services. But they are centralized and make users dependent.

Framasoft are resisting this trend. They have come up with a several year roadmap to set up alternative services. These services are thought of as digital commons. They are free, gratis, and open to all. Framasoft is a French not-for-profit whose goal is to decentralize the Internet by promoting self-hosting. They work to empower everyone to install and run their own services. The project already offers more than 15 alternative services and welcomes about 1,000,000 visits per month.


7 years, 8 months ago

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This talk was presented at LibrePlanet.


LibrePlanet is the Free Software Foundation's annual conference. The FSF campaigns for free/libre software, meaning it respects users' freedom and community. We believe that users are entitled to this; all software should be free.


We do not advocate "open source".

That term was coined to reject our views. It refers to similar practices, but usually presented solely as advantageous, without talking of right and wrong.


Richard Stallman launched the free software movement in 1983 by announcing development of the free operating system, GNU. By 1992, GNU was nearly operational; one major essential component was lacking, the kernel.


In 1992, Torvalds freed the kernel Linux, which filled the last gap in GNU. Since then, the combined GNU/Linux system has run in millions of computers. Nowadays you can buy a new computer with a totally free GNU/Linux system preinstalled.


The views of the speaker may not represent the Free Software Foundation. The Foundation supports the free software cause and freedom to share, and basic freedoms in the digital domain, but has no position on other political issues.