In France, three months ago, three senators proposed a
legislative bill (number 495), making it obligatory for the French
government to use free software.
After recently completing public discussion of the proposed law,
a new version (number 117) has been written, taking into account
many comments from the free software community concerning the
"logiciel libre" definition.
If this bill passes, all the branches of French government
will have to use free software exclusively beginning January 1,
2002. They will be allowed to use non-free software only if no free
software alternative exists. A "Agence du Logiciel Libre"
(Free Software Agency) will be created in order to control the use
of non-free software and help to seek for (and I hope fund) free
You can examine both the French Senate bill #495 and its new
version #117 side by side, in French, on the French
Because this proposed law is short, Babelfish should translate it
This law also includes provisions about the use of electronic
signatures and others.
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