Open Letter: The Universal Right to Install Any Software on Any Device


April signs the open letter proposed by the FSFE (Free Software Foundation Europe) and addressed to European legislators to demand a universal right to install any software on any device, joining more than 70 other signatories.

Read the open letter and the list of signatories

The open letter drafted by the FSFE intends to affirm that the longevity and reusability of devices are essential considerations “for a more sustainable digital society” and that this requires the guarantee of an effective right to install and execute any software on any device. The letter expresses this right around four complementary aspects:

  • Users have the right to freely choose operating systems and software running on their devices
  • Users have the right to freely choose between service providers to connect their devices with
  • Devices are interoperable and compatible with open standards
  • Source code of drivers, tools, and interfaces are published under a free license

The signing of this open letter is consistent with April’s actions on this subject, for instance in 2019 on the Figth Against Waste and for a Circular Economy Act1, or more recently on the Reducing the Environmental Footprint of Digital Technology Act2.

The fight against unfair computing (forced sale, DRM, exclusive boot with proprietary software...), the right to interoperability and, more generally, the effective defense of computing freedoms are structuring considerations for a better durability of IT equipment. It's only by giving users total control of their equipment, by giving them the means to be independent from the commercial choices of manufacturers and publishers of proprietary software, with free software, that we will be able to meet the challenges of sobriety and sustainability.