New German coalition government supports Public Money, Public Code initiative


After the September elections, Germany is expected to have a new coalition government made up of the Social Democrats, Alliance 90 / The Greens and the Free Democratic Party. According to The Document Foundation, which read the coalition agreement, the new government will adopt the notion of public money, public code (PMPC), a concept that has been promoted by the Free Software Foundation Europe (FSFE) for a number years.

Essentially, PMPC says that any software created with taxpayer dollars should be released as free software, basically if the public funds software development, the public should also have access to the code and be able to reuse it for their own projects. . . The PMPC calls for legislation to ensure that publicly funded software is released under a Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) license.

The Document Foundation highlighted two sections of the coalition agreement, the first one reads:

“Development contracts will generally be ordered in open source and the corresponding software is generally made public. “

The second says:

“In addition, we secure digital sovereignty, among other things through the right to interoperability and portability, as well as by relying on open standards, open source and European ecosystems, for example in 5G or in IA. “

The Document Foundation, which is responsible for FOSS’s office suite, LibreOffice, said it was encouraged by the commitments made by the new coalition. The coalition’s commitments surface barely a week or so after the German state of Schleswig-Holstein revealed it would install Linux on 25,000 of its computers as part of a cost-cutting exercise.