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Free Software Foundation Tamil Nadu

Free Software Foundation Tamil Nadu (or FSFTN in short) is a not-for-profit organisation formed in 2008[1] as a part of Free Software Movement of India (FSMI).[2] This organisation is a social movement that works towards enlightening the masses with the essence of free software and to liberate knowledge.[1] FSFTN organises different workshops and seminars[3][4][5] in Tamil Nadu among the youth to spread the idea of knowledge liberation.

Free Software Foundation Tamil Nadu
FSFTN Logo.svg
MottoBuilding Social Movement around Free Software & Knowledge Freedom
TypeNot-for-profit organisation
PurposeTo spread free software philosophy among the masses and help in bridging the digital divide using free software and also by mobilising the under privileged.
HeadquartersOkkiyampet, Chennai
Region served
Tamil Nadu, India
Official language
Tamil, English
Main organ
Executive Committee
AffiliationsFree Software Movement of India

Presently FSFTN is active in campuses like Indian Institute of Technology Madras, Anna University, Madras Institute of Technology, etc. in and around Chennai.[6]


Free Software Foundation Tamil Nadu is the body working as a part of Free Software Movement of India and not the Free Software Foundation of India.[7] It is often believed that FSFTN is the official chapter of Free Software Foundation or Free Software Foundation of India.[8] Recent disclaimer of Free Software Foundation, Tamil Nadu makes clear that FSFTN is a part of Free Software Movement of India and they are not associated with either Free Software Foundation or Free Software Foundation of India anyway other than the ideology.[1]


As per the FSFTN site the main objectives of the organisation are as follows:[1]

  • To take forward free software and its ideological implications to all corners of our country from the developed domains to the underprivileged.
  • To create awareness among computer users in the use of free software.
  • To work towards usage of free software in all stream of sciences and research.
  • To take forward implementation and usage of free software in school education, academics and higher education.
  • To work towards e-literacy and bridging digital divide based on free software and mobilising the underprivileged.
  • To work among developers on solutions catering to societal & national requirements.
  • To work towards a policy change favoring free software in all walks of life.

GNU/Linux Users Group (GLUG)Edit

The GNU/Linux Users Group (GLUG) are the essential place for Knowledge sharing activities for Colleges and Regions co-ordinated by FSFTN. FSFTN has both Regional and College GLUGs. The GLUGs operate at various levels and is guided by the Core Committee Members of FSFTN. The functionalities and structure of GLUG are as follows,

  • Each GLUG will have a Representative who will co-ordinate the GLUG and take care of the activities of the GLUG
  • The College GLUG consists of only the College Students and a Staff Representative[9]
  • The College GLUG organises activities and events inside the College and will aim to bring people involving them in Community Contributions, Projects, etc.
  • The Regional GLUG consists of members from the locality and gets involved in Knowledge Sharing sessions and bring in new people from various colleges in and around the region
  • GLUGs are the main point of contact for FOSS related activities and events in the locality
  • Each College and Regional will plan for Software Freedom Day (SFD), Education Freedom Day (EFD) and many such activities in a year.
  • GLUG members will represent their GLUG in the Summer Camp organised by FSFTN every year.


The Free Software Foundation Tamil Nadu was in the forefront of the protests against the inclusion of proprietary software in the free laptop scheme by the Government of Tamil Nadu.[6][10][11][12][13][14][15][16]

On February 6, 2012, FSFTN organised a lecture on "Freedom, Free Software and Education" by the founder of Free Software Foundation - Richard Matthew Stallman at IIT Madras in Chennai.[6][11][17][18]

On February 19, 2012, a Mozilla localisation seminar was organised by the Free Software Foundation, Tamil Nadu at IIT Madras.[5]

On June 9, 2012, FSFTN conducted a protest against Intermediaries Guidelines Rules and spread awareness about the importance of a free Internet through posters, distribution of pamphlets and speeches by some of the volunteers at Besant Nagar Beach, Chennai.[14][15][16]

On June 2013, FSFTN conducted 5 days workshop in collaboration with ILUGC at IIT-Madras on various technologies and discussed about social issues like "Internet Democracy","Gender Biasing" etc.

On 23 April 2015, as part of Free Software Movement of India's call for campaign in support of NetNeutrality, FSFTN organised a walkathon in Besant Nagar Beach[19]


  1. ^ a b c d "About". FSFTN. Retrieved 30 May 2014.
  2. ^ Deepa Kurup (22 March 2010). "National Free Software coalition formed". The Hindu. Retrieved 27 February 2012.
  3. ^ "Regional convention on free software". The Hindu. 8 November 2010. Retrieved 27 February 2012.
  4. ^ "Chapter Activities". Easwari Engineering College. Retrieved 27 February 2012.
  5. ^ a b "Indiameetup2012/Localization Sprints". 19 February 2012. Retrieved 27 February 2012.
  6. ^ a b c Arun Janardhanan (12 September 2012). "Free software movement spreads in universities". Times of India. Retrieved 20 September 2012.
  7. ^ "Board statement on recent issues". FSF India. Retrieved 13 November 2014.
  8. ^ Rankin, Dave (21 August 2013). "Mozilla Firefox in Tamil Now Available". Open Source. Retrieved 25 August 2013.
  9. ^ "FSFTN GLUG Manifesto". Google Docs. Retrieved 2018-05-13.
  10. ^ Vasudha Venugopal (26 June 2011). "ELCOT determines technical requirements for free laptops". The Hindu. Retrieved 27 February 2012.
  11. ^ a b Vasudha Venugopal (6 February 2012). "It's no 'free laptop' as long as it has proprietary software". The Hindu. Retrieved 27 February 2012.
  12. ^ Vasudha Venugopal (3 September 2011). "Free laptops not to have open source software". The Hindu. Retrieved 27 February 2012.
  13. ^ "Minister for IT, Tamil Nadu, clarifies free laptops to be loaded with Linux". Linux Candy. 4 September 2011. Retrieved 27 February 2012.
  14. ^ a b Karthik Subramanian (9 June 2012). "Anonymous India gears up for its first street protests across the country". The Hindu. Retrieved 12 June 2012.
  15. ^ a b Karthik Subramanian (9 June 2012). "Online activists hit the streets". The Hindu. Retrieved 12 June 2012.
  16. ^ a b "People join hands for Net freedom". Deccan Chronicle. 9 June 2012. Retrieved 10 June 2012.
  17. ^ "Free software from legal control". The Hindu. 7 February 2012. Retrieved 27 February 2012.
  18. ^ Prasanth Radhakrishnan (February–March 2012). "Social inertia the main obstacle". Frontline. Retrieved 27 February 2012.
  19. ^ "Young Chennaiites join campaign to protect net neutrality". Deccan Chronicle. Chennai. 23 April 2015. Retrieved 24 April 2015.

External linksEdit