Is Free Software going to be illegal in France?

While reading the FSF France website, it seems that the French government could declare free software illegal.

On Friday November 18th, 2005, at the ministry of culture, phonographic lobbying group declared to free software actors: “You are going to change your licenses.” and “You are going to stop publishing your software.”. They declared they would sue any author who gives his source code if the amendment “VU/SACEM/BSA/FT Division Contenus” would be voted.

Publishing free software allowing to access to culture is going to be a counterfeiter offence; any software allowing download such as instant messengers or any server software (P2P, HTTP, FTP, SSH, …). Any network software would require spyware ala Microsoft, Sony or Apple or would be declared illegal. Originally written by Videndi Universal, this amendment has been improved by other members of the Sirinelli comission, for the Higher Council of Literature and Artistic Property.

I believe this won’t work; if they would vote such a law, they’d kill their economy; on the other hand it was a crime to use cryptography a few years ago in this protectionist country where politicians “seek refuge behind old barriers and old ideas”. À suivre…

Updated information can be found here: