Community announces The Document Foundation

The community of volunteers developing and promoting sets up an 
independent Foundation to drive the further growth of the project

The Internet, September 28, 2010 - The community of volunteers who develop and 
promote, the leading free office software, announce a major 
change in the project’s structure. After ten years’ successful growth with Sun 
Microsystems as founding and principle sponsor, the project launches an 
independent foundation called "The Document Foundation", to fulfil the promise 
of independence written in the original charter.

The Foundation will be the cornerstone of a new ecosystem where individuals and 
organisations can contribute to and benefit from the availability of a truly 
free office suite. It will generate increased competition and choice for the 
benefit of  customers and drive innovation in the office suite market. From now 
on, the community will be known as "The Document Foundation".

Oracle, who acquired assets as a result of its acquisition of 
Sun Microsystems, has been invited to become a member of the new Foundation, 
and donate the brand the community has grown during the past ten years. Pending 
this decision, the brand "LibreOffice" has been chosen for the software going 

The Document Foundation is the result of a collective effort by leading 
independent members of the community, including several project 
leads and key members of the Community Council. It will be led initially by a 
Steering Committee of developers and national language projects managers. The 
Foundation aims to lower the barrier of adoption for both users and developers, 
to make LibreOffice the most accessible office suite ever.

The Foundation will coordinate and oversee the development of LibreOffice, 
which is available in beta version at the placeholder site: Developers are invited to join the project and 
contribute to the code in the new friendly and open environment, to shape the 
future of office productivity suites alongside contributors who translate, 
test, document, support, and promote the software.

Speaking for the group of volunteers, Sophie Gautier - a veteran of the 
community and the former maintainer of the French speaking language project - 
has declared: "We believe that the Foundation is a key step for the evolution 
of the free office suite, as it liberates the development of the code and the 
evolution of the project from the constraints represented by the commercial 
interests of a single company. Free software advocates around the world have 
the extraordinary opportunity of joining the group of founding members today, 
to write a completely new chapter in the history of FLOSS".

FSF President Richard Stallman welcomed LibreOffice release and it's stated 
policy of only recommending free software. "I'm very pleased that the Document 
Foundation will not recommend nonfree add-ons, since they are the main freedom 
problem of the current I hope that the LibreOffice developers 
and the Oracle-employed developers of OpenOffice will be able to cooperate on 
development of the body of the code".

"The Document Foundation supports the Open Document Format, and is keen to work 
at OASIS to the next evolution of the ISO standard", says Charles Schulz, 
member of the Community Council and lead of the Native Language Confederation. 
"The Document Foundation brings to the table the point of view of developers, 
supporters and users, and this might accelerate the adoption process of ODF at 
government and enterprise level".

Chris DiBona, Open Source Programs Manager at Google, Inc., has commented: "The 
creation of The Document Foundation is a great step forward in encouraging 
further development of open source office suites. Having a level playing field 
for all contributors is fundamental in creating a broad and active community 
around an open source software project. Google is proud to be a supporter of 
The Document Foundation and participate in the project".

"Viva la LibreOffice", said Guy Lunardi, product management Director at Novell. 
"We look forward to working with the Document Foundation to help develop a 
solid open source document software offering. Ultimately, we envision 
LibreOffice do for the office productivity market what Mozilla Firefox has done 
for browsers".

Jan Wildeboer, EMEA Open Source Affairs at Red Hat, has commented: "All over 
the world, users, companies and governments are moving to innovative technology 
solutions based on Open Standards.  Red Hat is proud to join this effort".

Mark Shuttleworth, founder and major shareholder of Canonical, the makers of 
Ubuntu, has declared: "Office productivity software is a critical component of 
the free software desktop, and the Ubuntu Project will be pleased to ship 
LibreOffice from The Document Foundation in future releases of Ubuntu. The 
Document Foundation's stewardship of LibreOffice provides Ubuntu developers an 
effective forum for collaboration around the code that makes Ubuntu an 
effective solution for the desktop in office environments".

"The Open Source Initiative has observed a trend back towards open 
collaborative communities for open source software", said Simon Phipps, a 
Director of the Open Source Initiative. "We welcome The Document Foundation 
initiative and look forward to the innovation it is able to drive with a truly 
open community gathered around a free software commons, in the spirit of the 
best of open source software".

"We welcome the LibreOffice project to the free software community as we 
believe there is a great opportunity for them to enrich the free desktop 
experience." says Stormy Peters, Executive Director of the GNOME Foundation.  
"Over the years the GNOME community has been supportive of OpenOffice together 
with applications in the GNOME Office suite, such as Gnumeric, GnuCash and 
Abiword. As LibreOffice joins the free software community, we believe that free 
desktop users will benefit from a rich set of choices."

Patrick Luby, Chief Engineer of NeoOffice says "I am happy to see a new, 
independent LibreOffice foundation to continue creating an office suite with 
enhanced features, pushing in new, exciting directions". Ed 
Peterlin, Chief Visionary at NeoOffice says "I am excited we will be able to 
continue bringing excellent features from LibreOffice to the Mac platform. In 
the future I also hope to extend our web based collaboration tools to support 
LibreOffice users on all platforms".

Chris Halls, UK Managing Director of Credativ, an independent consulting and 
services company specialising in the development, implementation and support of 
open source solutions: "Welcomes the foundation as an opportunity to provide a 
new focus for the community contributors and allow them to move the project 
forward together. In our business, we support thousands of office desktops in 
many different environments. It is  vital that the feedback and code that we 
can contribute as part of our day to day work can flow easily into the project".

"The creation of The Document Foundation is in line with the vision - Projeto Brasil has for the Brazilian community. 
Our country already has a large investment in the Open Document Format and the 
software tools fully suporting it. and The Document Foundation 
share the same values and objectives and we are more than happy to be part of 
it.”, says Claudio Filho, Chairman of the NGO of Brazil. 

The Norwegian foundation "Åpne kontorprogram på norsk" ("Open Office Suites In 
Norwegian") is responsible for the Norwegian translation of, and 
for promoting in Norway. So far the Norwegian project has been 
administered and financed mainly by counties and municipalities, but recently 
the foundation has started a process for getting commercial companies more 
actively involved. We realise the need for a more substantial commercial 
participation to establish a long-term sustainable project. Our foundation 
notes that the other Nordic countries, a majority of the European countries, as 
well as a range of worldwide big companies like Google, Novell, Canonical and 
Red Hat are now cooperating with The Document Foundation. We believe this is 
the right way forward also for Norway. A cooperation with The Document 
Foundation will make it easier to create more innovative and user-friendly 
solutions integrated with the LibreOffice suite. Eliminating license barriers 
and obtaining easy access to source code and standards will facilitate further 
development of related and integrated surrounding products. 

Additional information, including the mission, are available on the web site of 
The Document Foundation:
Biographies and pictures of the founding members of The Document Foundation are 
available here:
There is a specific page for people interested in contributing to the 
development of the code:

The Document Foundation has a Twitter account at and an account at

The announcements mailing list is at
The discussion mailing list is at
The IRC channel is #documentfoundation at

The Document Foundation

The Document Foundation is an independent self-governing democratic Foundation 
created by leading members of the Community. It continues to 
build on the Foundation of ten years' dedicated work by the 
community, and was created in the belief that an independent Foundation is the 
best fit to the Community's core values of openness, transparency, and valuing 
people for their contribution. It is open to any individual who agrees with our 
core values and contributes to our activities, and welcomes corporate 
participation, e.g. by sponsoring individuals to work as equals alongside other 
contributors in the community.

Media Contacts

Florian Effenberger (Germany)
Phone: +49 8341 99660880
Mobile: +49 151 14424108
Skype: floeff

Olivier Hallot (Brazil)
Mobile: +55 21 88228812

Charles H. Schulz (France)
Mobile: +33 6 98655424

Italo Vignoli (Italy)
Mobile: +39 348 5653829
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