Sunday, September 30, 2007

The Free Software Foundation (FSF) is a non-profit corporation founded in October 1985 by Richard Stallman to support the free software movement ("free" as in "freedom"), and in particular the GNU Project. The FSF is incorporated in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
From its founding until the mid-1990s, FSF's funds were mostly used to employ software developers to write free software. Since the mid-1990s there are more and more companies and individuals writing free software, so FSF's employees and volunteers mostly work on legal and structural issues for the free software movement and the free software community.
Being consistent with its goals, only free software is used on all of the FSF's computers.

Free Software Foundation Current work of FSF

On November 25, 2002 the FSF launched the FSF Associate Membership program for individuals.


Board of Directors

Hal Abelson, Professor of Computer Science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (served from inception until March 5, 1998, and rejoined circa 2005)
Geoffery Knauth, Senior Software Engineer at SFA, Inc. (served since October 23, 1997)
Lawrence Lessig, Professor of Law at Stanford University (served since March 28, 2004)
Henri Poole, Founder of CivicActions, a grassroots campaign technology consulting firm. (served since December 12, 2002)
Richard Stallman, Founder of FSF and the GNU Project, Founding President, former maintainer of various GNU software, and principal author of the GNU GPL, Versions 1 and 2 (served since inception)
Gerald Sussman, Professor of Computer Science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (served since inception)
Benjamin Mako Hill, graduate student at the MIT Media Lab. (served since July 25, 2007) Free Software Foundation Other former members of the Board of Directors
FSF is governed by a voting membership that sets the number of directors and elects them to office. Traditionally, the FSF voting membership is a superset of the Board of Directors. The current voting members are (in alphabetical order):

Hal Abelson
Robert J. Chassell
Benjamin Mako Hill
Geoffery Knauth
Lawrence Lessig
Eben Moglen
Henri Poole
Richard M. Stallman
Gerald Sussman Voting Members
Some of the Free Software Foundation staff, both current and past, are unpaid volunteers. At any given time, there are usually around a dozen employees. Most, but not all, work at the FSF headquarters in Boston, Massachusetts.

Staff and Employees
Eben Moglen and Dan Ravicher previously served individually as pro bono legal counsel to the FSF. Since the forming of the Software Freedom Law Center, legal services to the FSF are provided by that organization.

Legal Representation

2001 - Free Software Foundation Europe was founded in Germany.
2003 - Free Software Foundation India was founded in Kerala.
2005 - Free Software Foundation Latin America was founded in Argentina. Recognition

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