Software Freedom Conservancy

Software Freedom Conservancy

Software Freedom Conservancy is a not-for-profit charity that helps promote, improve, develop, and defend Free, Libre, and Open Source Software (FLOSS) projects. Conservancy provides a non-profit home and infrastructure for FLOSS projects. This allows FLOSS developers to focus on what they do best — writing and improving FLOSS for the general public — while Conservancy takes care of the projects' needs that do not relate directly to software development and documentation.

[RSS] Recent News

Conservancy Announces New Strategy for GPL Enforcement and Related Work, Receives Grant from ARDC

October 1, 2020

Software Freedom Conservancy, the only organization actively engaged in General Public License (GPL) enforcement and compliance work for Linux, announces today a new strategy toward improving compliance and the freedom of users of devices that contain Linux-based systems. The new work has received an initial grant from Amateur Radio Digital Communications (ARDC).

Copyleft enforcement ensures software freedom for all. Copyleft licenses require distributors to provide complete source code — including installation instructions. Without this, we do not control the software that surrounds us. Whether we want to fix simple bugs, remove functionality to protect our privacy, or completely replace device firmware, we need the ability to modify and reinstall the software on our devices. Today, Conservancy announces it is undertaking a new, multi-pronged approach to our copyleft compliance work.

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OpenWrt Joins Conservancy

September 10, 2020

OpenWrt — building on their sixteen years of success as the most popular Free and Open Source (FOSS) wireless router project — today joins Conservancy as a member project. FOSS wireless routers assure software freedom for all Internet users. Conservancy will help OpenWrt continue to thrive and grow as its new fiscal sponsor.

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Deb Nicholson to Join Open Source Initiative as Interim General Manager

August 20, 2020

Deb Nicholson has been serving as our Director of Community Operations for just over two years and is now leaving to Conservancy to take on the role of Interim General Manager at the Open Source Initiative (OSI). Although Deb will no longer be on our staff, she'll remain part of the Conservancy community, most formally as a volunteer on our Evaluation Committee that reviews applications from potential new member projects.

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A new chapter for PyPy: Transitioning away from a Charitable Model

Conservancy Winds Down Its Involvement in PyPy

August 12, 2020

PyPy has been a member project of Software Freedom Conservancy since 2010 and although it's been a mutually successful partnership, nothing lasts forever — especially in software. Today, Conservancy and PyPy announce that they are winding down their ten year relationship. PyPy will remain free software, but the community's structure and organizational underpinnings will change. Conservancy provides a fiscal and organizational home for projects that find the freedoms and assurances that come along with a charitable home advantageous for their community goals. While this framework was a great fit for the early PyPy community, that community has changed such that this is no longer the case. PyPy's leadership are exploring non-charitable options for its next phase of growth.

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Conservancy Applies to Renew Key DMCA Exemption

July 30, 2020

Conservancy has once again pushed for a renewal of the exemption to smart TV's, effectively allowing people to install and use free software on their own televisions. As part of a coalition with a group of researchers, our Executive Director, Karen Sandler also participated in filing the renewal application to continue the exemption for medical devices filed by the USC's Gould School of Law. Both of these exemptions must refiled in the triennial review process to ensure that interacting with the software in these devices does not become unlawful.

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Conservancy Requests Three DMCA Exemptions to Let People Control Their Devices

by Conservancy's Staff on September 16, 2020

Every three years, the US Copyright Office conducts a rulemaking process to consider exemptions to the anticircumvention provisions of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). These are the provisions of the law that make it a criminal offense to circumvent digital rights management technology (DRM). These provisions give technology companies far too much control over the technology people use, prohibiting all kinds of modification and tinkering in the name of “copyright protection.” We would love to see the anticircumvention provisions of the DMCA repealed in their entirety.

Until that happens, the rulemaking process gives us an opportunity to request exemptions that are strategically important for software freedom and essential for us to be able to control our own devices. This year we requested three new exemptions.

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