Kroess comes out as open source advocate

Kroess comes out as open source advocate

Summary: When Kroes was competition commissioner she had to offer an appearance of non-partisanship on the question of open source vs. proprietary software. Now, with her promotion, the gloves are apparently off.

SHARE:

Now that former EU antitrust chief Neelie Kroes (right) has moved up to a post as vice president of the European Commission, she has become a fierce advocate for open source.

Some of that fire was on display today at Open Source Europe, where she lit into Microsoft and other proprietary companies with an almost Stallman-like fervor.

She charged that governments waste the public's money with proprietary standards, and can get locked in for many years by even specifying a browser.

As the EU's Commissioner for the Digital Agenda, Kroes is now very influential in setting procurement policies across Europe, and her complete support for open source and open standards can now be stated plainly.

Today's speech, however, was not a surprise. She published a six point Digital Agenda in March focused on interoperability, a single digital market across Europe, better technology training, faster Internet links, more research dollars, and greater trust of technology.

All this was framed as a way out of the current recession. She also offered a little European "nationalism":

People in China and Brazil and Mexico and Australia are not assuming anything. Instead they are reforming and innovating and pushing their limits. We have to do the same.

When Kroes was competition commissioner she had to offer an appearance of non-partisanship on the question of open source vs. proprietary software. Now, with her promotion, the gloves are apparently off.

Is this a good thing for open source, and if Europe does move government procurement and investment toward open standards in the next few years, how should the U.S. respond?

Topics: Open Source, Enterprise Software, Security

Kick off your day with ZDNet's daily email newsletter. It's the freshest tech news and opinion, served hot. Get it.

Talkback

24 comments
Log in or register to join the discussion
  • Everyone knew she was lying scum

    Why is this news?
    No_Ax_to_Grind
    • Microsoft is also welcome to compete with open standards. If they can

      innovate like you are saying, they will do very well.
      DonnieBoy
      • RE: Kroess comes out as open source advocate

        @DonnieBoy

        Where does Idaho rank? We have been living in Montana for the past 5 years and I am not supri<a href=http://www.hipersexshop.com.br>sexy shop</a>to find it #3 on the "worst" list. Considering a<a href=http://www.hipersexshop.com.br>sexshop</a>move to Idaho to escapthe high cost of living a low income in MT. There may not be a sales tax here but they get you if you own property!
        filhomarques
      • RE: Kroess comes out as open source advocate

        software. Now, with her<a href="http://fpdaily.net/"><font color="light&amp;height"> about it</font></a> is bank that <a href="http://www.marketinge.biz/"><font color="light&amp;height">website</font></a> attacked from the <a href="http://www.commerce21.org/"><font color="light&amp;height">site support</font></a> from any soldier <a href="http://andyoctavian.com/"><font color="light&amp;height">site</font></a> to the light <a href="http://www.hawkeyereview.com/"><font color="light&amp;height">home page</font></a> is great promotion
        gorians
    • RE: Kroess comes out as open source advocate

      @No_Ax_to_Grind Very true, the developer oriented tools are not made available to technet subscribers. On one hand I understand it, but things like the Powershell cmdlet tool comes as source code. <a href="http://blog.arabaoyunlarimiz.gen.tr/">oyun blogu</a>
      Arabalar
    • RE: Kroess comes out as open source advocate

      @No_Ax_to_Grind My guess is that as more and more people start using open source based development software stacks, the percentage contributing back will fall. Early adopters are enthusiastic and are more devoted to the cause. Many times the custom code that a programmer develops may designed specifically for their scenario. It takes time to document and deliver code that is consumable for the broader community. It's no surprise that the use of Windows as a desktop operating system is falling in popularity with this group. Linux has become a more viable option, and someone who believes in developing using a open source software stack is more likely to choose an open source desktop <a href="http://www.arabaoyunlarimiz.gen.tr/bebek-oyunlari/dadi-bebek-bakicisi.html">dadi bebek bakicisi</a> <a href="http://www.kraloyun.gen.tr/ameliyat-oyunlari/">ameliyat oyunlari</a>
      Arabalar
  • Great to see somebody in government that gets it and understands the need

    for standards and competition!! They will end up saving Europe a fortune in the long run, and, also foment innovation.
    DonnieBoy
  • RE: Kroess comes out as open source advocate

    If private businesses want to nail themselves to one particular service provider that's up to them, but when it's my taxes, I want the govt. to use the most cost effective solution. For example, Microsoft's almost total market dominance over the last twenty years had created a situation where govt. agencies blindly buy MS without even considering the alternatives. If Kroes can encourage agencies to consider all sensible alternatives and do some sort of basic cost/benefit analysis, then it's good news for tax payers, innovation and competition. If US companies want to stay at the top of the league then they need to prove that they're the best value for (my hard earned) money.
    AndyPagin
    • Yes, great to see governments understanding the need for competition and to

      take care of hard earned taxpayer money.
      DonnieBoy
      • RE: Kroess comes out as open source advocate

        @DonnieBoy Watch out, DonnieBoy. I hear she's a Dutch Socialist!
        DanaBlankenhorn
      • RE: Kroess comes out as open source advocate

        @Dana. .
        It does not really matter who comes out with a good idea as long as it gets out.
        The " not-invented-here " is not a good way forward.
        hkommedal
  • RE: Kroess comes out as open source advocate

    When governments and large corporations buy the pricing of the software is not an issue, it is cheap. The issue is overall costs. While I use Linux about half the time and Windows the rest, don't tell me that Linux is a way to save money. Most businesses I know of save money by not upgrading once they have a solution that solves their problems. I know of one major bank that still uses Windows 2000 - on new equipment with beautiful large LCD screens the public can see.
    jtimouri
    • Cheap

      @jtimouri only per user, or if you don't compare the licence price with free. Collectively tax-funded institutions in most countries spend an appreciable percentage of the tax monies on software licences.
      putt1ck
  • For those of us who pay the taxes that support these systems,

    it's good news that an influential figure in the Commission is promoting open source. With regard to Ms Kroes' (one 's', Dana, hope you will correct the headline !) background, Dana might be surprised to know that far from being a 'Dutch socialist', she's an economist and member of the [i]Volkspartij voor Vrijheid en Democratie[/i], a business-friendly party on the right side of the Dutch political spectrum. As for the typically gallant characterisation of the lady provided above by 'Ground so much, there's no axe left at all', note that after all, she is an economist....

    Henri
    mhenriday
  • Off-topic: SCO

    This is a bit off-topic, but..
    The seven year long FUD-fest of the SCO vs the Rest of the World court battles is almost over, now that SCO lost the Novell court case.
    And what are the reactions on the ZDnet "Linux and Open Source" blog?

    "Linux infection proves Windows malware monopoly is over"
    and
    "10 things not to like about Ubuntu 10.04"
    and
    "Kroess(sic) comes out as open source advocate"

    Can we avid readers expect your views on SCO-Novell, Dana?

    On-topic:
    She's a market economist who studied the facts, what can you expect?
    More quotes from Kroes from <a href="http://thinkexist.com/quotes/neelie_kroes/">http://thinkexist.com/quotes/neelie_kroes/</a> (probably from when she was competition commissioner):
    "we want to boost innovation in Europe, but not just by one company"
    ?I think national champions are absolute nonsense. This rhetoric is extremely dangerous.?
    ?Consolidation in the skiing equipment industry cannot be allowed to lead to higher prices, lower quality or less innovative products,?
    dontfear
    • RE: Kroess comes out as open source advocate

      @dontfear I've written about SCO for years and the final result is an anti-climax. We saw the end of the story weeks and weeks ago, and commented on it extensively.
      DanaBlankenhorn
  • RE: Kroess comes out as open source advocate

    @DanaBlankenhorn
    Fair enough, I guess.. I'm curious how the other court cases will go that were "paused" in anticipation of SCO-Novell and bankruptcy court, such as Redhat-SCO and SCO-IBM counterclaims.
    dontfear
  • RE: Kroess comes out as open source advocate

    the percentage contributing back will fall. Early adopters are enthusiastic and are more devoted to the cause. Many times the custom code that a programmer develops may designed specifically for their scenario. It takes time to document
    <a href="http://www.nivahavaperdesi.com">Hava Perdesi Fiyatlari</a>
    <a href="http://www.nivahavaperdesi.com">Hava Perdesi</a>
    <a href="http://www.nivahavaperdesi.com">Hava Perdeleri</a> and deliver code that is consumable for the broader community. It's no surprise that the use of Windows as a desktop operating system is falling in popularity with this group.
    seocu
  • RE: Kroess comes out as open source advocate

    I think it is time for Ballmer to go and for the company to break itself up into smaller more nimble companies. They still

    have great people and business units that would thrive if they could break away form the corporate shackles. We are
    <a href="http://www.kolcularltd.com">Hava Perdeleri</a>
    <a href="http://www.kolcularltd.com">Hava Perdesi Fiyatlari</a>
    <a href="http://www.kolcularltd.com">Hava Perdesi</a>
    witnessing Microsofts descent from industry luminary to marginalized business sector leader
    seocu
  • organic seo service

    This is good site to spent time on .I just stumbled upon your informative blog and wanted to say that I have really enjoyed reading your very well written blog posts. I will be your frequent visitor, that's for sure.


    <a href="http://www.ictmentors.com/">organic seo service</a>
    sher.afgan