Gavin Baker, a really fantastic free data activist from the US, nudged me recently about his post on the position of different European parties on open access to research. Scott Redding, one of our Green Party candidates in the elections and also doing amazing work getting more online activism for the party, gave a fairly strong statement on his intention to support the cause of open/free data.
So where do we stand? It’s easier to explain by talking about our wider policy and activism around intellectual property. So here’s an update on a previous post:
- The Green Party in England & Wales has very strong, explicit policy on intellectual property with specific statements on open source software, public data (especially maps) and open data generally.
- Lots of Green MEPs and candidates have signed the Free Software Pact;
- In Liverpool City Council, Greens have passed a motion encouraging the use of free and open source software;
- The Greens led the fight against software patents in Europe;
- We ran an amazingly successful media campaign against Microsoft Vista and DRM in the BBC iPlayer;
- We co-wrote the free software, free society open letter promoting free software;
- Our conferences literature uses OpenStreetMap to help people find them!
The Green Party in England & Wales hasn’t done much work specifically on open access to research but I guess the message to Gavin and other activists is: we have strong, clear policy on this, and we’re an open door. Green MEPs will always listen to you, turn up to vote on directives, write letters and within reason support the cause!