Software Freedom Conservancy makes useful work for free software. One of their important activities is GPL enforcement. Whether you think the principle “I give you my source code and if you further distribute it, do so under the same conditions you originally received it” is right or wrong, the fact that some organizations care a lot about their proprietary possessions while violating the terms of the free software they use is alarming.
If we tolerate stealing GPLed software, we’ll lose another piece of our freedom. I think this is one of very important reasons to support the Software Freedom Conservancy.
Software Freedom Conservancy is certainly not the only organization working hard to protect our software freedom. I’m aware of at least the following important non-profit organizations doing that:
- Electronic Frontier Foundation
- Defends our overall digital rights, doing very competent, important and useful work in the areas of freedom and privacy.
- Free Software Foundation
- Promotes free software and computer user freedom, its GNU project was a free software revolution and we might be locked into proprietary software completely today without the work the FSF has done.
- Free Software Foundation Europe
- Makes some important, especially lobbying, work for software freedom in Europe. IMHO Europe is the place where the future of our civilization may be saved or given up.
- Software Freedom Law Center
- The lawyers, providing important services related to free software in the areas of licenses, patents, trademarks, etc.
- Software Freedom Conservancy
- Provides shelter and services to some free software projects and works on enforcing GPL compliance (e.g. Linux).
In my opinion, all these organizations are very important and need sustainable financial contributions from individuals. They do a lot with little. Not everyone can support them all, but everyone who cares about software freedom and can support at least one of those non-profits should do so.
BTW, (limited number of) the Software Freedom Conservancy supporters who sign up by January 31 will count twice.