InfoWorld: Italians revolt against Microsoft supremacy; demanding that government use open source

“The Italian state administration is excessively dependent on
Microsoft’s software, and the country could achieve significant
budget savings if it switched to open-source software, according to
an open letter that a group of information technology professionals
is preparing to deliver to Public Administration Minister Franco
Bassanini. The revolt against Microsoft’s market dominance is being
led by top state administrators, consumer groups, and academics,
and the letter has been signed by about 1,000 people since it was
posted on the Internet 11 days ago, said Manlio Cammarata, editor
of InterLex ( www.interlex.it ), an online weekly magazine devoted
to legal, technology, and information issues, which has hosted the

“It has had a far greater success than I expected,” Cammarata
said in an interview on Monday. “IT professionals feel very
strongly about the issue, since they know the limits of Microsoft’s
products and the advantages of open-source software, especially in
a public administration environment,” he said. “We will present the
letter to the minister in a few days, but it will take awhile to
get a response. We’re not in the United States here.”

“We have started something that will be very difficult to
stop,” Cammarata said. “They will not be able to ignore this
appeal. I already have confidential responses assuring me the
government will take it seriously.”
The push for open-source
software is likely to reduce Microsoft’s market dominance, although
its effects will be seen only gradually, Cammarata said.”

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