Software Freedom Conservancy

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Judy Gichoya, Doctor & Developer of LibreHealth, Asks You to Support Conservancy

by Bradley M. Kuhn on December 31, 2017

About a year ago, we announced the joining of a newly formed project, LibreHealth, as a Conservancy member project. This year, I had the opportunity to meet, at various conferences, Judy Gichoya, who is a medical doctor specializing in Radiology from Kenya, and is also a software developer on the LibreHealth project.

Judy represents so much about why we at Conservancy continue to fight for software freedom: we foster technology that everyone can examine, improve, and share, and allow people from different backgrounds — including geographically, professionally and culturally — to come together to make that technology better.

Invariably, every time I go to a doctor's office here in the USA, the staff complains (or makes an excuse) for the proprietary software they use to handle my medical data. My colleague, Karen Sandler, has researched and spoken extensively about the health dangers of proprietary software on medical devices. LibreHealth is one of many projects which seeks to solve some of these problems by creating more medical-related software that gives doctors and patients the software freedom they deserve.

Judy recorded this video to ask you to become a Supporter of Conservancy. On this last day of 2017, we all ask you to donate generously to help our work continue!

Tags: conservancy, supporter, LibreHealth

Quick update on Trademark Matter

by Bradley M. Kuhn on December 30, 2017

We've promised transparency, and we're committed to it even when the news is annoying for us. If this proceeding weren't such a waste of time and resources, I might even be fascinated by the twists and turns that are inherent in litigation and are often new to me as a non-lawyer.

The current primary issue is that SFLC has sought to amend their initial petition with the TTAB to add a claim on fraud. Their claim is that Software Freedom Conservancy shouldn't have been allowed to register our trademark because we were aware of the SFLC trademark registration. As Karen and I stated briefly before, these claims are baseless. We will respond to SFLC's request to amend their original Petition by the TTAB's deadline of January 11.Update on 2018-01-03: We officially responded to the SFLC's request to amend their original Petition.

In the meantime, the TTAB decided, due to a procedural issue, the summary judgment motion we filed is currently moot. The TTAB indicated that we can refile for summary judgment later, after our answer is updated. This, of course, can't happen until the matter of SFLC's Petition amendment is resolved.

Yes, it's confusing and procedural. Litigation is like this. We still find all of this a waste of time and resources. We'll stay focused on our essential work for software freedom through our regular, important work for Conservancy, until the next round of SFLC's attacks — but we still hope SFLC will simply do the right thing and withdraw the petition.

UPDATE: as of 2018-08-24, the Summary Judgement motion is refiled and pending before the TTAB.

Links to our previous blog posts on this matter: 1, 2, 3.

Tags: conservancy

Chris Neugebauer, chair of North Bay Python, encourages you to Support Conservancy

by Bradley M. Kuhn on December 23, 2017

Earlier this month, Software Freedom Conservancy helped North Bay Python 2017 complete an excellent Python conference focused on Free and Open Source Software for Python. As with all our member projects, they succeed because of our excellent collaboration between volunteers and Conservancy staff to make sure all the work gets done right.

In this video, Christopher Neubaugher, conference chair of North Bay Python 2017 and a Conservancy Supporter, encourages you to become a Conservancy Supporter today. And, today's a great day to do it! Your donation will be doubled by our current match campaign.

Tags: conservancy, supporter

SFLC: Escalation Disguised as “Settlement Offer”

by Bradley M. Kuhn and Karen M. Sandler on December 22, 2017

Conservancy stands by our motion for summary judgment to dismiss Software Freedom Law Center (SFLC)'s petition to cancel our trademark. This remains the most resource-efficient way to dispense with SFLC's unwarranted attacks. We have received their latest escalation, disguised as a “peaceful settlement” offer. Instead of deescalating today, SFLC added inflammatory accusations against Conservancy and its employees. Obviously, we did not commit fraud; our legal counsel, Pam Chestek, has advised us that SFLC's fraud allegation is “unequivocally unfounded”. We will not let them further waste our time.

We cannot accept any settlement offer that includes a trademark license we don't need. Furthermore, any trademark license necessarily gives SFLC perpetual control over how we pursue our charitable mission. SFLC, our former law firm, helped us form and name our independent entity. Changing this arrangement now does not advance software freedom nor our mission. Our community remains best served by SFLC and Conservancy as independent entities.

Links to our previous blog posts on this matter: 1, 2

Tags: conservancy

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