Brazilian president, Lula, at the International Free Software Forum
Free Software’s history in Brazil is divided in two: before Lula became a nerd, and after that.
For the first time, we managed to get Lula to the International Free Software Forum, where he spoke about freedom, free culture, and commented about a law project proposed by a Senator, which aims to “regulate” internet in Brazil: “At the Brazilian government, it is forbidden to forbid”, said the president. He said the project is censorship, and needs to be reviewed by the Senate.
He also said, making an analogy between software and food, that Brazil had the choice of “cooking its own food, and choose the spices, or eat Microsoft’s food”, and added, “we decided for freedom”.
The organization of the conference distributed pictures of the president to the participants, with phrases like “Lula is nerd”. And he loved it and distributed autographs on the pictures.
He is spoke to a 300 people’s audience, and walked through the exhibition area, visiting user groups, taking pictures wearing community hats and holding shirts.
I think we can’t aim to fly much higher around here, we got to the highest hierarchy of Brazilian’s government, and had Ministers and the President himself, talking about software freedom. The 10th anniversary of this event is definitely making history. And I am glad to be part of it.