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Media Contact: Free Software Foundation
Ravi Khanna <communication@fsf.org>

FSF Encourages Californians to Support Software Freedom with Microsoft Vouchers

Boston, MA, USA - Wednesday, November 19, 2003 - The Free Software Foundation (FSF) is encouraging residents of California, or anyone who purchased Microsoft software for use in California, to take advantage of the offered vouchers, which are part of the Microsoft class-action settlement with the state of California, to spread software freedom.

Under the terms of a settlement, reached in California's antitrust and unfair competition class action lawsuit against Microsoft, the company is required to provide vouchers totaling up to $1.1 billion to eligible California users of its Windows, MS-DOS, Office, Excel, Word, Works Suite or Home Essentials 97 or 98 products. These vouchers can be redeemed for cash as reimbursement for the purchase of other qualifying computer hardware or software. They can also be donated to non-profit organizations (even those outside of California) for their use in purchasing software or hardware.

Californians, who like many others had little choice but to pay Microsoft's high prices for its monopolistic proprietary software, now have a unique opportunity to help the Free Software Movement. According to Bradley M. Kuhn, Executive Director of FSF, "they can use this class-action lawsuit, which at last forces Microsoft to give up some of its ill-gotten gains, to support Free Software and the GPL. We encourage people to donate their vouchers to FSF or to use them to purchase software from FSF's GNU Press division. What could be better than to use Microsoft's own resources to defend software freedom and the GPL?

FSF has set up a special webpage at http://www.fsf.org/voucher.html to help facilitate this transfer of some resources from Microsoft to FSF. FSF asks anyone who purchased Microsoft software for use in California to consider using them to help FSF.

About Free Software Foundation:

The Free Software Foundation, founded in 1985, is dedicated to promoting computer users' right to use, study, copy, modify, and redistribute computer programs. The FSF promotes the development and use of Free (as in freedom) Software - particularly the GNU operating system and its GNU/Linux variants - and Free Documentation for Free Software. The FSF also helps to spread awareness of the ethical and political issues of freedom in the use of software. Their web site, located at http://www.fsf.org, is an important source of information about GNU/Linux. They are headquartered in Boston, MA, USA.

Copyright © 2003 Free Software Foundation, Inc., 51 Franklin St, Fifth Floor, Boston, MA 02110, USA

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Updated: $Date: 2005/05/05 19:37:19 $ $Author: novalis $