MP Isabelle Attard, free software-champion, loses seat
April, France’s free software advocacy organisation, is once again signing up candidates in the elections for France’s next National Assembly, to its Free Software Pact. The second and final round of the elections will take place this Sunday. However, free software-champion MP Isabelle Attard has already lost her seat; “a big loss for digital freedom”, the group says. With its Candidats.fr campaign, April is calling on volunteers to contact candidates to ask them to pledge support for free software. So far, the campaign has gathered 482 support statements from candidates, 55 of whom can win a seat in the new Assembly. “This year, many candidates spontaneously signed our Pact, without being contacted by our volunteers”, says April spokesperson Étienne Gonnu. “It shows how free software and open standards are being acknowledged as fundamental for society.”
A key signatory is Christophe Castaner, who was appointed government spokesperson on 17 May. Alexandre Zapolsky, CEO of Linagora, one of France’s leading free software firms, looks likely to win a seat in the Assembly as well.
April is also hoping to get support from Mounir Mahjoubi, Secretary of State in charge of Digital Affairs. Mr Mahjoubi, as former president of France’s digital council (Conseil national du numérique), in 2016 called for a national free software strategy.