A call on public administrations to practice what they preach and support open document formats

Paris, 15 September 2014. Press release.

April supports the FixMyDocuments platform which aims to help European public administrations that have decided to support ODF to implement their decision by documenting, tracking and reporting their compliance to that goal. On FixMyDocuments.eu anybody can report public web pages which do not offer editable documents in ODF formats, when the public administrations have committed to do so. This platform was been launched by Open Forum Europe.

Many administrations in Europe (the most recent example being the UK government) have decided to switch to ODF for editable documents which are shared with the public. Such decisions are very positive improvements, as they improve interoperability, reduce vendor lock-up, and improves the possibility for all to communicate with public administrations. The switch to open formats is also challenging, as it entails new habits and new ways of communicating for public administrations. This initiative aims to help them through general public participation.

“Open formats and Free Software share the same goals: to serve everyone and to ensure users stay in control over their data as well as data durability. By using closed/proprietary formats, public institutions give even more weight to the dominant position that some companies established in their area. April encourages governments and public institutions to move towards the exclusive use of open formats for publishing and exchanging documents.” said Frédéric Couchet, executive director at April.

The current list of supporters, including Neelie Kroes, former European Commission Vice-President for Digital Agenda, is available on the FixMyDocuments web site.

If you don't know what "open formats" stand for, you can visit our page about open formats.

The platform was launched on 15 september 2014. Do not hesitate to use it and report relevant pages!