Celebrate Document Freedom Day!

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Today marks the annual observance of Document Freedom Day (DFD), a global day for document liberation.

On this important occasion, let's all recognize that progress has been made to promote and use open standards and to liberate documents. In January, India’s Department of Information Technology published its draft Interoperability Framework for E-Governance in India (IFEG), which lists ODF on its approved standards for e-governance in India.

That same month, the government of the UK published its Procurement Policy Note on the use of Open Standards when specifying ICT requirements, recommending that they "...should whenever possible deploy open standards in their procurement specifications.” Bill McCluggage, the UK’s Deputy CIO, attended the 5th ODF Plugfest , held for the first time in the UK. According to one publication, “his presence there sent a strong message of support to the open standards community across Europe. Open Document Exchange Formats will inevitably be an area for important debate, and one where we can expect to see government determination to lead by example being put to the test.”

But, there is still much work to be done. And you can make a difference in this effort. Here are a few ideas, but you can find more on the Document Freedom Day website:

  1. Write to your representatives and ask public administrations to use open standards.
  2. Can't read your document poster. Write something on a poster, e.g. "I cannot read your documents." Then take a picture of a person with the sign in front of a public institution and publish the picture using the tag #dfd2011.
  3. Change your email signature for DFD. Sample:

    Document Freedom Day - Liberate your documents
    http://documentfreedom.org/ - March 30th 2011

  4. Check out some of the conversations started on Opensource.com

surrounding DFD:

Want to get involved in a local DFD event? Learn more here.

Mark Bohannon | Mark Bohannon is Vice President of Global Public Policy and Government Affairs at Red Hat. Previously, he served as Senior Vice President, Public Policy and General Counsel at the Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA), the principal U.S. trade association for the software and digital content industry.

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