[Linux-aus] Press release - Software Freedom Day - Sept 10

Pia Waugh greebo at pipka.org
Mon Aug 22 11:24:03 UTC 2005

Hi all,

The press release for Software Freedom Day is below, it has been sent out to
various media, and if you have anywhere you want to post it in part or full,
please do so :)


----- Forwarded message from Pia Waugh <pia at linux.org.au> -----

Media Release: Australia's first Software Freedom Day - September 10, 2005

Thousands of people expected to gather in cities around Australia to share and promote the benefits of free and open source software.

Sydney, Australia - August 19, 2005

Linux Australia is proud to announce Australia's inaugural Software Freedom Day on September 10, 2005. 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!

Software Freedom Day will have over 12 teams across Australia covering every state doing a variety of activities, including distributing free Linux CDs and other giveaways, running booths about Linux and open source software, and helping community centers in disadvantaged areas of Australia with computers in an effort to help reduce the national digital divide.

See which teams are close to you and drop by to discover more about Free Software and your local community. Even start your own team at:


More information about free software can be found online at:


Free software offers everyone all the tools they need to improve their computer literacy, without any upfront cost. Computers have become an integral part of society and now drive most businesses. Computer skills have therefore become essential to advancing a person's career. 

In addition to job prospects, computer skills and online communications equip an individual with the means to a better education, online services and goods, a broader community, and to opportunities that simply may not be accessible to them in their area. The online culture does not judge people on their colour, age, sex, or beliefs, but rather on their achievements, and with the right tools, what an individual can achieve with a computer is solely limited by their imagination. 

Unfortunately, socio-economic divisions have created a significant gap in the access to opportunities within our society. In many countries free software is being used by governments to improve access and opportunities by equipping schools with more computers and establishing community centres with free access to computers. For example, in Spain the Extremadura Government (a province in Spain) deployed enough computers to allow one computer for every two children in the public school system of that province. 

In Australia we are nowhere near this kind of penetration. If Australia reduced the percentage of its ICT-related current deficit by redirecting imported software expenditure to computer hardware and services for the average citizen, more opportunities for the population will arise. If the average Australian with a home computer could avoid spending money on Microsoft Windows, Microsoft Office, PDF Writer, Photoshop, and other software that have freely available alternatives, more money could be spent on education and business. 

Free software is particularly beneficial for the socio-economically disadvantaged, as inexpensive second-hand computer hardware is readily available, and free Software gives people access to most applications they are likely to need - completely for free. 

Examples of free software include, the Linux operating system, OpenOffice.org office productivity suite, Firefox Web browser, and the GIMP image manipulation tool (similar to Adobe Photoshop). There is also free software for gaming, instant messaging, business and financial applications, and many more areas of computing.

Since her children were exposed to free software, Sara Kaan, a mother of five, has been impressed by the extensive range and quality of applications available in all her children's key learning areas - from pre-school to senior primary.

"I'm excited by the opportunities open source provides them," Kaan said. "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, September 10!

About Software Freedom Day
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! See http://www.softwarefreedomday.org for more information.

About Linux Australia
Linux Australia Inc. was founded to cater for the needs of the Australian Linux community and to promote the use of Linux and open source software in Australia.Linux Australia is also the organisation responsible for linux.conf.au, one of the world's leading technical Linux conferences. See http://www.linux.org.au for more information about Linux Australia.

        Australian event coordinator and Linux Australia Vice-President:
                Pia Waugh - 0400 966 453 or pia (at) linux.org.au
        Linux Australia President:
                Jon Oxer - 0438 576 600 or jon (at) linux.org.au

Journalists are very welcome to these events, and please contact us if you are interested in more information, interviews or photos.

Warmest regards,
Pia Waugh

----- End forwarded message -----


Linux Australia                                         http://linux.org.au/
                "Women hold up half the sky." - Mao Tse Tung

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