This is an extract from our association statutes. Links at the end of the page.
The association OSP has as its main goal to propagate Free and Open Source culture in Brussels and internationally. More specifically, OSP asbl aims to stimulate the social movements of Free Culture and Free Software in the field of graphic design.
Free Culture and Free Software challenge the excesses of copyright and one of the ideas which underly copyright: the ideas of originality and of artistic creation as a solitary act. Instead they propose a vision of artistic creation which includes collaboration, exchange and creative re-appropriation.
Free Culture chooses not to reject copyright outright, but to appropriate and subvert it with its own means (also known as “copyfight”). Participants in Free Culture choose to distribute artistic works under a license which permits others many of the freedoms normally lacking in traditional copyright licenses: the freedom to freely use the works, modify them and redistribute the modified copies.
Free Software as a concept applies to computer software; an example of a Free Software license is the GNU General Public License. Free Culture as a concept applies to other cultural works such as designs, drawings, compositions, texts. An example of a Free Culture license is the Free Art License and the Creative Commons Attribution Share-Alike license.
Free Culture and Free Software are part of what is more popularly known as “Open Source”. More specifically Free Culture and Free Software are “share-alike”: that is to say, a work of Free Culture and of Free Software can only be used by others if the resulting work is also licensed as Free. They can thus be seen as to be concerned with creating an alternative ecology which features a different way of dealing with intellectual property; an ecosystem that can exist next to but cannot easily be fully appropriated by the existing privative regimes of intellectual property.
While one can make Free Culture with proprietary software, and one can use Free Software to produce creative works under traditional copyright licenses, OSP asbl stimulates the use of Free Software to create Free Culture in order to develop a coherent ecosystem of freedom. Indeed Free Software, by its open nature, invites to understand the mechanisms of digital tools to then manipulate them in a critical and constructive way. Practices shape tools—tools shape practices.
OSP asbl pursues the realization of its goal by all means but more specifically through three axis: pedagogy, research and graphic design. OSP asbl gives workshops in the frame of traditional educational institutions and organizes alternative events outside of that frame which further question how Free Culture can change existing pedagogy. In collaboration with cultural or educational institutions, OSP asbl is able both to develop a theoretical framework and the open tools which exemplify this position. By engaging in graphic design practice, both as part of its own projects and those of others, the hypotheses from the research are tested in practice, and new questions arise. Finally, editing and publishing are a means to serve OSP asbl goal, as are public events: print parties, workshops, performances, exhibitions and lectures.
When depositing statutes to declare an association in Belgium, you are intended to write these in the language used by the governmental institution you are registrating with. In the case of OSP, we wanted to register with both the Dutch and the French governments to have the dual ASBL / VZW status. We have an English version because it was our middle ground to sync beteen the french and english version. It’s nice to use the english one on the blog.