[Sfd] Press release

Pia Waugh greebo at pipka.org
Mon Aug 15 14:21:19 UTC 2005

Hey all,

I forgot to mention, if you like any/all of the draft press release below,
please circulate it to your local press or other information sites. I'll get
it onto the LA site and national press as soon as we have some concensus on
it (in the next day or two).


SFD Press Release

Linux Australia is proud to announce Software Freedom Day on September 10!
Software Freedom Day is a global initiative to celebrate and give back to
the community by taking Free and Open Source software to the streets!

On Software Freedom Day, we have more than 10 teams over 7 states in
Australia doing a variety of activities, including handing out Linux CDs and
some giveaways, running booths about Linux and Open Source software, and
even helping out community centres in disadvantaged areas of Australia with
some computers in an effort to help keep our national Digital Divide issue
under control. Check out what teams are close to you and drop by to find out
more about Free Software and your local community. Even start your own team
at http://maitri.ubuntu.com/softwarefreedomday/wiki/index.php/Australia and
find more online information about Free Software at

Free Software offers everyone all the tools they need to improve their
options and their life, completely for free. Computers have become an
integral part of society, driving almost every business, and computer skills
have become an absolute must to get a good job. Apart from job prospects,
computer skills and online communications equip an individual with the means
to a better education, to online services and goods, to a broader community,
and to opportunities that simply may not be accessible to them in their
area. We have seen in the online culture that people are not judged for
their belief, colour, age or sex, but rather are judged on their merit and
achievements, and with the right tools, the imagination is the limit to what
an individual can achieve with a computer. 

Socio-economic divisions have created a significant gap in the access to
opportunities within our society. In many other countries Free Software is
being used by governments to generally improve access to opportunity by
equiping schools with more computers and setting up community centres with
free access to computers, after all they can afford more when the software
itself is completely free upfront, and long term. In Spain the Extremadura
Government (a province in Spain) rolled out enough computers to allow one
computer to every 2 children in the public school system of that province.
In Australia we are nowhere near this kind of target. Imagine if we reduced
the huge percentage of our current deficit that is ICT related, by
redirecting imported software costs to more ICT hardware and services for
the average Australian. Imagine if the average Australian with a home
computer of their own could save all that money spent on Microsoft Windows,
Microsoft Office, PDF Writer, Photoshop, and a plethora of other software
that have freely available and powerful alternatives in the Linux world.
Free Software is obviously a huge benefit particularly to the
socio-economically disadvantaged, as there are often inexpensive second hand
computer hardware available, and Free Software gives them access to all the
programs they need completely for free. Linux, Open Office, Firefox, the
GIMP (a Photoshop equivalent), games, chat clients, business and financial
applications and much more is freely available to anyone who wants it.

"I've been impressed by the extensive range of quality free software
available for all of key learning areas for my children from pre-school to
senior primary" says Sara Kaan, mother of five. "I'm excited by the
opportunities Open Source provides them, there's always something new for
them to discover and share." Discover Free Software and what it can do for
you on Software Freedom Day, Sept 10!


Linux Australia                                         http://linux.org.au/
                      "What are we doing today brain?"
              "We're taking over the world like we always do."
                           - Pinky and the Brain

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