The Free Software Foundation Europe (FSFE, or FSF Europe) was founded in 2001 as an official European sister organization of the U.S.-based Free Software Foundation (FSF) to take care of all aspects of free software in Europe. FSF and FSFE are financially and legally separate entities.
FSFE believes that access to and control of software determines who may participate in a digital society. Therefore, the freedoms to use, copy, modify and redistribute software, as described in The Free Software Definition, are necessary for equal participation in the information age.
The focus of FSFE's work is political, legal, and social with the aim of promoting Free Software and the ethical, philosophical, social, political and commercial values that it implements. In particular, it
- is actively promoting Free Software politically as Europe-based global competence center in dialog with politicians and press.
- follows and seeks to influence legal and political activities that are contrary to the goals and values of Free Software.
- provides a contact point and orientational help on all issues regarding Free Software.
- works closely together with lawyers active in the Free Software area in Universities and practices in order to follow and influence the legal discourse. Also it cooperates with lawyers throughout Europe to maximise the legal security of Free Software.
- supports, coordinates and develops projects in the Free Software area, especially the GNU Project. It also provides computer resources to Free Software developers to enable them to continue their developments.
- helps companies to develop business models based on Free Software or fit existing models to it; it encourages companies in their evolution to Free Software. To make it easier for companies based on Free Software to be commercially successful, the FSF Europe also seeks to broaden the market for Free Software.
- helps coordinating and networking other initiatives in the Free Software area.