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  • Jurgen

Software Freedom Day Music Challenge

Image CC0 by Kindel Media (pexels) - people making music

Don't want to read it all? Musescore, one of the most popular music notation applications, challenges teams to write a Software Freedom Song. The best song will win a nice prize.

What's Musescore?

Mulaptop with MuseScoreseScore's development began in 2002 when Werner Schweer started the project. He wanted to create a music notation program that was easy to use, powerful, and a
vailable for free to the community. The first versions of MuseScore were relatively basic, but they laid the foundation for the software's future development. Initially, MuseScore wasn't Open Source.

In 2008, MuseScore became an Open Source project under the GNU General Public License (GPL). This shift allowed other developers and the music community to contribute to its development, leading to rapid improvements in subsequent versions.

During the last 15 years, Musescore kept raising the bar for music notation software. With the release of MuseScore 4.0 we were also introduced to MuseHUB - a VST library with advanced instrument samples to make music sound better than most of the common MIDI sound banks.

In 2017 MuseScore got acquired by Ultimate Guitar, and a parent company was created called the Muse Group, who aim to make music accessible to all. They also acquired Audacity. They dedicated a team of professional developers who could further improve the program into what it has become currently.

What's the challenge?

Every team is challenged to write a Software Freedom Song. This can be in English, in your language of choice or in a combination of multiple languages.

What's the prize?

The main product of MuseScore is the music notation program. This program is freely licensed (GPLv3) and can be freely downloaded from the website. Additionally, MuseScore also offers certain services. These services pay the bills at MuseScore, but also add some nice value to your musical experience:

The winner of this challenge gets one year of free access to both MuseScore Pro+ and MuseScore Learn, on top of being able to use the most powerful and user friendly open source music notation programs out there.

Rules of the game

  • Songs must be submitted before the deadline of October 1st 2023, midnight (GMT+00) - early submissions can also be promoted to be sung by other groups.
  • Submission must be licensed under one of these Creative Commons 4.0 licenses: CC-BY, CC-BY-SA, CC-BY-NC, CC0 (so it should be allowed to create derived versions in other languages)
  • Submissions can be in the form of a video link and/or a PDF (score) audio or MuseScore file.
  • The board of the Digital Freedom Foundation will pick a winner from the submissions.
  • Teams with a member of the Digital Freedom Foundation board are not eligible for this prize (but everyone is free to submit a song)

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