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European Commission Publishes Guidelines on the Procurement of FOSS

Nov 06, 2008, 19:35 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Martin Michlmayr)

[ Thanks to An Anonymous Reader for this link. ]

"Rishab Ghosh, who presented the guidelines at the Open Source World Conference in Malaga, argued that the procurement guidelines were needed because of two reasons. First, they studied recent tenders and found that many explicitly mentioned proprietary applications. 16% of 3615 software tenders explicitly asked for products from top 10 software vendors, such as Microsoft, SAP and Oracle. This practice may be illegal because public tenders generally have to describe functional requirements in a general way instead of specifying specific products. Second, many public administrations don't have any experience with the procurement of FOSS. In fact, they often don't know whether or under which circumstances they are allowed to adopt and ask for FOSS solutions. The guidelines are specifically designed in order to clearly and simply explain how public administrations can acquire open source and they don't assume that a country has adopted a specific policy regarding open source."

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