OpenBSD Journal

Announcing - The OpenBSD Foundation

Contributed by deanna on from the donations dept.

The OpenBSD Foundation is pleased to announce today it has completed its organization as a Canadian federal non-profit corporation and is ready for public interaction.

The OpenBSD Foundation has been formed for the purpose of supporting the OpenBSD project, and related projects such as OpenSSH, OpenBGPD, OpenNTPD, and OpenCVS.

In particular it will act as a single point of contact for persons and organizations requiring a legal entity to deal with when they wish to support OpenBSD in any way.

The OpenBSD Foundation will initially concentrate on facilitating larger donations of equipment, funds, documentation and resources. Small scale donations should continue to be submitted through the existing mechanisms.

The OpenBSD Foundation corporate charter, bylaws, and goals can be found at http://www.openbsdfoundation.org. The foundation directors may be contacted via email at directors@openbsdfoundation.org.

The traditional methods of donating to OpenBSD via paypal, bank transfer, credit cards, or pizza delivery will remain available for individuals and organizations with less strict auditing requirements. If you're able to donate the old way, please continue to do so, as it saves the project and the foundation the organizational overhead.

The OpenBSD Foundation's inaugural board of directors is Bob Beck (beck@), Kenneth Westerback (krw@) and Kjell Wooding (kjell@). Thanks for helping to ensure the future of our favorite OS!

(Comments are closed)


  1. By Anonymous Coward () on

    I would like to see an official endorsement from Theo.

    1. By J.C. Roberts () on http://www.designtools.org/index.php

      > I would like to see an official endorsement from Theo.

      It's real. It's been in the works for some time.

      There's something very important which you need to understand about non-profit and not-for-profit organizations. The people who are beneficiaries (i.e. Theo and other devs recieving hardware/docs/money/escort services) can *NOT* be officially involved in (or in charge of) the non-profit.

      The exact laws vary country by country but the above is the general rule.

      1. By Anonymous Coward () on

        > > I would like to see an official endorsement from Theo.
        >
        > It's real. It's been in the works for some time.
        >
        > There's something very important which you need to understand about non-profit and not-for-profit organizations. The people who are beneficiaries (i.e. Theo and other devs recieving hardware/docs/money/escort services) can *NOT* be officially involved in (or in charge of) the non-profit.
        >
        > The exact laws vary country by country but the above is the general rule.

        surely bob@ is a benificiary?

        1. By Bob Beck () beck@openbsdfoundation.org on

          > > > I would like to see an official endorsement from Theo.
          > >
          > > It's real. It's been in the works for some time.
          > >
          > > There's something very important which you need to understand about non-profit and not-for-profit organizations. The people who are beneficiaries (i.e. Theo and other devs recieving hardware/docs/money/escort services) can *NOT* be officially involved in (or in charge of) the non-profit.
          > >
          > > The exact laws vary country by country but the above is the general rule.
          >
          > surely bob@ is a benificiary?

          Actually, it's beck@, not bob@ :)

          But realisticly, no, I'm not, and won't be. I won't be taking
          money or stuff from the Foundation - It's just easier that
          way, and frankly, I'm doing this to make sure we can get funding
          for the likes of what theo and other developers need. Those
          of us that are directors while we are developers tend to be the
          ones that don't generally need extra support for their development
          efforts - and we know plenty of more worthy causes who make
          less money in their day jobs, or don't have day jobs, than us.

          In short - we're doing this because it needs doing, and personally
          at least I'm putting myself last on the list.

      2. By Anonymous Coward () on

        > There's something very important which you need to understand about non-profit and not-for-profit organizations. The people who are beneficiaries (i.e. Theo and other devs recieving hardware/docs/money/escort services) can *NOT* be officially involved in (or in charge of) the non-profit.

        That is not the case in Canada, at least for Canada Corporations Act Part II corporations (which the OpenBSD Foundation is). The prohibition is on members receiving profits, not on them receiving things (e.g. hardware) to do things with which advance the purpose of the corporation.

        (Full disclosure: I'm a corporate director and secretary / treasurer for a similar Canadian non-profit.)

        1. By Darrin Chandler (dwc) on http://www.stilyagin.com/darrin/

          > (Full disclosure: I'm a corporate director and secretary / treasurer for a similar Canadian non-profit.)

          Coming from Anonymous Coward, "Full disclosure" seems funny. ;-)

          But thanks for the additional info.

        2. By J.C. Roberts () on http://www.designtools.org

          > > There's something very important which you need to understand about non-profit and not-for-profit organizations. The people who are beneficiaries (i.e. Theo and other devs recieving hardware/docs/money/escort services) can *NOT* be officially involved in (or in charge of) the non-profit.
          >
          > That is not the case in Canada, at least for Canada Corporations Act Part II corporations (which the OpenBSD Foundation is). The prohibition is on members receiving profits, not on them receiving things (e.g. hardware) to do things with which advance the purpose of the corporation.
          >
          > (Full disclosure: I'm a corporate director and secretary / treasurer for a similar Canadian non-profit.)

          Thanks for the clarification. I spent two years as a board member of a 501(3)(c) non-profit for leukemia patients here in the US. My experience seems to be in a significantly different class of corporation. I *think* what I did here would be considered a "registered charity" in Canadian legal parlance (i.e. where donations are tax deductable and accounting requirements are far more strict).

          I know the people involved in putting together the OpenBSD Foundation have been working on it for a long time, doing their homework, getting proper legal advice and so on before making any public statement. It's been a lot of work for them and all we can see at the moment is the tip of the iceberg.


      3. By Anonymous Coward () on

        > The people who are beneficiaries (i.e. Theo and other devs recieving hardware/docs/money/escort services) can *NOT* be officially involved in (or in charge of) the non-profit.

        Surely this doesn't prevent Theo from endorsing the foundation.

    2. By Anonymous Coward () on

      > I would like to see an official endorsement from Theo.

      To: misc@cvs.openbsd.org
      Subject: The OpenBSD Foundation
      Date: Thu, 26 Jul 2007 11:58:47 -0600
      From: Theo de Raadt <deraadt@cvs.openbsd.org>
      X-Loop: misc@openbsd.org
      Precedence: list
      Sender: owner-misc@openbsd.org

      There have been a few questions as to whether I endorse the OpenBSD
      Foundation.

      That question comes up because the OpenBSD Foundation is not the same
      as OpenBSD. The Foundation is a parallel entity which builds a new
      way for funding the project; making it easier for companies and other
      organizations (or even individuals who can benefit from a receipt) to
      help ensure more even funding for the project.

      Of course I endorse it. It there is a large donation being made to
      the project, the Foundation is the way to do it.

      I just cannot be personally involved in the Foundation myself as a
      board member since I will (in the eyes of Revenue Canada) perhaps
      sometimes be benefiting from it, since so much of the infrastructure
      resides at my house.

  2. By Anonymous Coward () on http://www.MacEater.com/

    "The traditional methods of donating to OpenBSD via paypal, bank transfer, credit cards, or pizza delivery"

    Hehe, pizza delivery =) If I ever visit canada I will!



    http://www.MacEater.com/

    1. By Kevin () on

      > Hehe, pizza delivery =) If I ever visit canada I will!

      As many parents of college students know, You can call in a delivery order (with a credit card) to a pizza place in another city/state/country, and they'll deliver, within their local delivery area.

      In Chicago this also works for beer and cigarettes :)

  3. By Anonymous Coward () on

    the link on the puffy image goes to art1.html which doesn't exist at www.openbsdfoundation.org, presumably it should be openbsd.org/art1.html

  4. By Anonymous Coward () on

    I wonder how much of an issue this part will be:
    "We are not a registered charity, in the sense that we do not issue tax deductible receipts."

    Most people talking about non-profit-orgs usually worry about that part, on
    how you save a few bucks if the donations can be made deductable.

    Still, its good to see this kind of effort.

    1. By J.C. Roberts () on

      > I wonder how much of an issue this part will be:
      > "We are not a registered charity, in the sense that we do not issue tax deductible receipts."
      >
      > Most people talking about non-profit-orgs usually worry about that part, on
      > how you save a few bucks if the donations can be made deductable.
      >
      > Still, its good to see this kind of effort.
      >

      You're asking a question where the answer varies from place to place due to (ever changing) international tax laws. The best thing you can do is consult your local tax attorney to get a (hopefully) "correct" answer.

      Here in the US, the IRS does not really differentiate a "charity" from other non-profits/not-for-profit corporations. The part that matters is having tax-exempt status (known as "501(3)(c)" after the specified section of US tax law). Also, the IRS does (or better said "can") recognize non-profit/not-for-profit coporations from other countries.

      It is possible for a US citizen or company to get a US tax deduction on donations to a Canadian non-profit, possibly even if the Canadian non-profit is not a "charity" under Canadian law. From what I've been told the important thing is whether the IRS has recognized the foreign non-profit corporation for exemptions. -Of course, you ought to ask your local tax attorney.

      Needless to say, in each and every country, all the tax rules and requirements change.

      Regardless of all the tax nonsense, it's great to see this happening. I suspect the only thing we can see at the moment is the tip of the iceberg.

  5. By Dean () on

    This is great news. Any ideas on where the dividing line is between small and large donations? $1k, 5k, 25k? Should we start pressing our local vendors to step up? I'd like to hear of a corporate donation from Dell, for instance.

    Also is there a requirement of disclosure as to where the foundation spends the money?

    I know FreeBSD and NetBSD have foundations and post financial reports, so I guess the same goes for here.

    As for me, I'm going to donate the money I saved by not having to spend time on updating my name servers due to the latest BIND vulnerability that OpenBSD had already protected against.

    1. By Bob Beck () beck@openbsd.org on

      > This is great news. Any ideas on where the dividing line is between small and large donations? $1k, 5k, 25k? Should we start pressing our local vendors to step up? I'd like to hear of a corporate donation from Dell, for instance.
      >
      > Also is there a requirement of disclosure as to where the foundation spends the money?
      >
      > I know FreeBSD and NetBSD have foundations and post financial reports, so I guess the same goes for here.
      >
      > As for me, I'm going to donate the money I saved by not having to spend time on updating my name servers due to the latest BIND vulnerability that OpenBSD had already protected against.



      Yes, if you examine our bylaws, you will notice we have financial
      reporting requirements.

      1. By Noryungi (Noryungi) on

        > Yes, if you examine our bylaws, you will notice we have financial
        > reporting requirements.

        Great job, I hope the Foundation will bring more money to the OpenBSD project.

    2. By Bob Beck () beck@openbsdfoundation.org on

      > This is great news. Any ideas on where the dividing line is between small and large donations? $1k, 5k, 25k?

      the essential answer is that - we don't take visa or do microcharging.
      those sorts of things are better directed by the current routes.
      if you were into the amounts you are referring to and don't mind
      writing a cheque, we're happy to hear from you.


      > Should we start pressing our local vendors to step up? I'd like to hear of a corporate donation from Dell, for instance.

      Absoultely YES! - point them at the site. We would love for
      help from the user community in getting major vendors to
      contribute, as this is a major target for us for funding.


  6. By User since 2.7 () on

    Congratulations on the person/s who gave the argument that convinced Theo to support the idea; for years this has been suggested and I hope it's for the better. Maybe now Sun will pay its due for OpenSSH.

  7. By Terrell Prude' Jr. () on http://www.cmosnetworks.com/

    This is good to see. I have been a user of OpenBSD since v2.8, and anything that can increase the revenue flowing into the project is, IMO, a positive development.

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