Software Freedom Day

Software Freedom Day (SFD) is an annual worldwide celebration of Free Software organized by the Digital Freedom Foundation (DFF). SFD is a public education effort with the aim of increasing awareness of Free Software and its virtues, and encouraging its use.

Software Freedom Day logo
Software Freedom Day 2018 seminar at Budi Luhur University, Jakarta, Indonesia

SFD was established in 2004 and was first observed on 28 August of that year. About 12 teams participated in the first Software Freedom Day. Since that time it has grown in popularity and while organisers anticipated more than 1,000 teams in 2010[1] the event has stalled at around 400+ locations over the past two years, representing a 30% decrease over 2009.

Since 2006 Software Freedom Day has been held on the third Saturday of September. In 2022, this event will be held on 17 September.

Students lined up to register at the Software Freedom Day 2011 event in the University of Santo Tomas, Manila, Philippines


Each event is left to local teams around the world to organize. Pre-registered teams (2 months before the date or earlier) receive free schwag sent by DFF to help with the events themselves. The SFD wiki contains individual team pages describing their plans as well as helpful information to get them up to speed. Events themselves varies between conferences explaining the virtues of Free and Open Source Software, to workshops, demonstrations, games, planting tree ceremonies, discussions and InstallFests.[2]

Professor Rodrigo Gastón Manresa conference at the Software Freedom Day 2016 event in the Superior Institute of General Manuel Belgrano 6001, Salta, Argentina

Past eventsEdit

Time Teams Countries Source
28 August 2004 12 N/A
10 September 2005 136 60 SFD 2005 map
16 September 2006 180 70 SFD 2006 map
15 September 2007 286 80 SFD 2007 map
20 September 2008 563 90 SFD 2008 map
19 September 2009 700 90 SFD 2009 map
18 September 2010 397 90 SFD 2010 map
17 September 2011 442 87 SFD 2011 map
15 September 2012 301 73 SFD 2012 map
21 September 2013 316 81 SFD 2013 map
20 September 2014 197 59 SFD 2014 map
19 September 2015 141 47 SFD 2015 map
17 September 2016 128 51 SFD 2016 map
16 September 2017 88 44 SFD 2017 map
15 September 2018 71 37 SFD 2018 map
21 September 2019 59 36 SFD 2019 map
19 September 2020 18[3] 18 SFD 2020 wiki
18 September 2021 60[4] 28 SFD 2021 wiki
17 September 2022 43[5] 20 SFD 2022 wiki

Note on the figures above: it is difficult to find figures of the early years. The maps on the SFD website are only reliable after 2007, however some years such as 2009 saw extra teams from two different sources which did not "officially" register with DFF. There was about 80 teams from China and a hundred from the Sun community (OSUM) who heavily subsidized goodies for their teams.[6] In the early year of SFD the map was an optional component not connected with the registration script and therefore some teams did not go through the troubles of adding themselves.


The primary sponsor from the start was Canonical Ltd., the company behind Ubuntu, a Linux distribution. Then IBM, Sun Microsystems, DKUUG, Google, Red Hat, Linode, Nokia and now MakerBot Industries have joined the supporting organisations as well as the FSF and the FSFE. IBM and Sun Microsystems are currently not sponsoring the event. In terms of media coverage DFF is partnering with Linux Magazine, Linux Journal and Ubuntu User. Each local team can seek sponsors independently, especially local FOSS supporting organisations and often appears in local medias such as newspapers and TV.[7]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Fred Muller's blog (President of Software Freedom International)
  2. ^ SFD Startup Guide (What should we do)
  3. ^ "SFD 2020 Teams".
  4. ^ "SFD 2021 Teams".
  5. ^ "SFD 2022 Teams".
  6. ^ Mirrored SUN PR announcement
  7. ^ Press coverage Archived 18 September 2010 at the Wayback Machine

External linksEdit