Committee begins review of High Priority Projects list — your input is needed

High Priority Projects logo

This announcement was written by the FSF’s volunteer High Priority Projects Committee.

Nine and a half years ago the first

of the High Priority Free Software Projects (HPP) list debuted with
only four projects, three of them related to
Java. Eighteen months
later, Sun began to free Java
. The
current HPP list
includes fourteen categories mentioning over forty distinct projects. Computing
is ever more ubiquitous and diverse, multiplying challenges to
surmount in order for all computer users to be free.

Undoubtedly there are thousands of free software projects that are
high priority, each having potential to displace non-free programs for
many users, substantially increasing the freedom of those users. But
the potential value of a list of High Priority Free Software Projects
maintained by the Free Software Foundation is its ability to bring
attention to a relatively small number of projects of great strategic
importance to the goal of freedom for all computer users. Over the
years the list has received praise
— frankly not nearly enough, given the importance of its aims — and
been rebooted. As the list
approaches its tenth year, we aim to revitalize and rethink it, on an
ongoing basis.

The first step has been to assemble a committee which will maintain
the list, initially composed of the following free software activists:
ginger coons, Máirín
, Matthew
, Benjamin Mako
, Mike
, Lydia
, Karen
, Seth
, and Stefano
. The committee has drafted this
announcement and the following plan.

We need your input! Send your suggestions of projects to Remember, we’re looking for projects of great strategic
importance to the goal of freedom for all computer users. If you wish, we encourage
you to publish your thoughts independently (e.g., on your blog) and send a us a link.
Keep in mind that not every project of great strategic importance to the
goal of freedom for all computer users will be a software development
project. If you believe other forms of activism, internal or external
(e.g., making free software communities safe for diverse participants,
mandating use of free software in the public sector), are most crucial,
please make the case and suggest such a project!

Based on the received input, the current content of the list, and our
own contributions, we will publish a substantially revised list and an analysis before
LibrePlanet 2015 and expect a lively
discussion at that event. If we are successful, we will have the immediate impact of bringing widespread coverage of free software movement strategy and the ongoing impact of garnering substantial attention and new effort for
listed projects. (Note that we’re also interested in outreach and measurement
suggestions. A revised and maintained list is necessary but not sufficient
for success.)

Finally, we’ve already made a few minor changes to the HPP list in
order to fix long-standing issues that have been reported in the past.
We are looking forward to your feedback at as
we work on more substantial improvements!

About the Free Software Foundation

The Free Software Foundation, founded in 1985, is dedicated to
promoting computer users’ right to use, study, copy, modify, and
redistribute computer programs. The FSF promotes the development and
use of free (as in freedom) software — particularly the GNU operating
system and its GNU/Linux variants — and free documentation for free
software. The FSF also helps to spread awareness of the ethical and
political issues of freedom in the use of software, and its Web sites,
located at and, are an important source of information
about GNU/Linux. Donations to support the FSF’s work can be made at Its headquarters are in Boston, MA, USA.

Media Contacts

John Sullivan
Executive Director
Free Software Foundation
+1 (617) 542 5942

Source: Free Software