Skip to main content

Red Hat pulls funding from Free Software Foundation

Richard Stallman
(Image credit: Future)

In a major vote of no-confidence, popular open source vendor Red Hat has axed all monetary support to the Free Software Foundation (FSF).

Red Hat announcement follows the return of FSF’s former president, Richard Stallman (RMS) to the board of directors of the organization he founded. 

“Considering the circumstances of Richard Stallman’s original resignation in 2019, Red Hat was appalled to learn that he had rejoined the FSF board of directors. As a result, we are immediately suspending all Red Hat funding of the FSF and any FSF-hosted events,” Red Hat’s statement read.

Unpopular return

RMS has made pivotal contributions to the free software movement and to the development of open source operating systems such as Linux. 

However, it were his crude comments made in light of Jeffrey Epstein’s conviction apparently downplaying the accusations of the victims, that forced his resignation from the FSF in 2019.

His announcement to return to FSFs board has been overwhelmingly criticized. Groups such as Open.UK and the Electronics Frontier Foundation (EFF), along with several open source power players have expressed disappointment at RMS’ return.

In a video announcing his return, RMS categorically said that he didn’t plan to resign a second time, which apparently triggered Red Hat’s departure. 

Furthermore, earlier this morning, John Sullivan, the current Executive Director at the FSF tweeted that he’s resigned his position after spending almost two decades in the organization.

With RMS and the FSF adamant on maintaining status quo, it looks like Red Hat’s announcement to sever ties could just be the beginning of the alienation of the much loved organization by the wider open source community.

Via: The Register