On the 28 March 2018, Fedora Ambassadors organized Document Freedom Day in Singapore. Document Freedom Day is a day which like-minded folks who care about libre document formats gather to discuss and raise awareness of libre document formats. Libre document formats help reduce restrictions and vendor lock-ins. They are also an important tool that enables our right to read freely.
As someone passionate about freedom and individual privacy, I was excited about this event. Along with my ambassador mentor, Herson, we helped to organize this event.
As you might know, Fedora released its 24th version at the end of June! Recently, the Fedorans in Singapore had a party to celebrate the release. The release party was not only to celebrate its release, but also to commemorate Fedora’s open source journey so far. We invited people from different diverse background to join us for a night of fun and open conversations (Singapore is a cosmopolitan country!)
Some of the Fedora 24 DVDs and OpenSource.com stickers for the party
We had a RSVP of over 50 folks and expected more to join in. We set up the Fedora banners and were also ready to give out DVDs and stickers. However, on the day itself, there was a dropout rate of 60% and only around fifteen folks turned up. Most of the folks that turned up were students interested in learning more about Fedora. Nevertheless, it was a cozy and warm party that everyone felt pretty comfortable with.
Document Freedom Day is a day where we celebrate and raise awareness of Open Standards. It is held annually, on the last Wednesday of March. However, this year, the Ambassadors in Singapore decided to celebrate it on 24 March, 2016.
Document Freedom Celebration
We held our celebrations at a local Hackerspace (courtesy of Robert Sim, a member of Hackerspace SG). The event included a talk on importance of Open Standards and a small cake and pizza party after. The event was posted up on Meetup and everyone was invited to join in the fun and to learn more about Open Standards. The turn-out rate was pretty good with around 10 to 15 folks joining us for the evening. Most of them had a strong background in various Linux distributions.
Engineers Singapore also helped to record our talk at the Hackerspace. Do check out the video if you weren’t able to join us.
After the talk, one of our Ambassadors did the honors of cutting the delicious looking Document Freedom cake. While we had our party, we had many wonderful and intriguing conversations about Open Source and Open Standards. Some even discussed Fedora’s upcoming release.
One of the questions raised was whether huge proprietary companies will bother about Open Standards. Many of the folks had different views on this topic – some held an optimistic view whilst others had a less optimistic one. The optimistic ones felt that if we put more pressure on these companies, they would follow the standards. Others felt that they only care about profits and if these companies followed Open Standards, they might make a loss.
A huge thanks to everyone: Ambassadors, Hackerspace SG, Engineers SG, for making Document Freedom Day in Singapore a huge success. And for those who join us for the celebration, thank you for taking your time to drop by. We hope that you’ve learned something from this event and most importantly, we also hope that you had tons of fun with us! Looking forward to seeing all of you at the next event!