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We get a lot of e-mail with questions that are generally a result of misconceptions and a lack of awareness of the issues that and Free Culture groups were designed to respond to. We want to take those questions head-on and have something to point people to when they bring up these questions.

If you're looking for a bunch of text that used to be here, see Misconceptions.

There is also an About page in development, with which this FAQ overlaps. How this will be resolved is not yet known.

What is

(partially Ripped from the About page) is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting and facilitating student involvement in the free culture movement. Everyone is welcome, young or old, but our focus is organizing on high school and college campuses. Launched in April 2004 at Swarthmore College in Swarthmore, Pa., has helped establish student groups at colleges and universities across the United States. Today, Free Culture groups exist at nine colleges, from Maine to California, with more getting started around the world. is non-partisan and run by the volunteer efforts of students activists themselves. members promote community driven solutions to todays (and tomorrows) cultural issues to create an open, participatory cultural environment for everyone.

Trying to find a way to fit the following into the explanation in a coherent manner:

  • not communists (how do we say this? "pro-free market"? "pro-capitalism"?)
  • not radicals
  • not just nerds: nerds, artists, political types, etc.
  • relationship between FC groups, FC.o

What is free culture?

What do you do?

(From the About page, needs to be expanded) has four major functions:

  • Creating and providing resources for student groups and others
  • Outreach to students and others
  • Networking with other organizations and companies
  • Issue advocacy on behalf of our students

How are you organized?

(Ripped from the About page) is adminstrated by:

Interim Board of Directors
Steering Committee
Core Team
Other Teams
Executive Director
Local Groups
  • Boston University
  • Bryn Mawr College
  • University of California, Santa Cruz
  • Colby College
  • University of Evansville
  • University of Florida
  • Franklin & Marshall College
  • New York University
  • Swarthmore College

What is the history of FC.o? was founded by two Swarthmore students after they sued voting-machine manufacturer Diebold for abusing copyright law. Named after the book Free Culture by Stanford University law professor Lawrence Lessig, was launched in April 2004. incorporated in May 2005 and is currently in the midst of building a corporate structure, board of directors, and by-laws.

What is your partisan bent? is a non-partisan organization. In the U.S., our members include Republicans, Democrats, Libertarians, and others.

What is your relationship with other groups? is an independent organization, not officially affiliated with any other group. has, however, cooperated with several groups in the past to advance the goal of free culture including the Electronic Frontier Foundation, Public Knowledge, Creative Commons, and Downhill Battle. Many members of are also members of the Free Software Foundation and the Electronic Frontier Foundation in support of their work on free culture issues.

Who pays for this?

Our Web hosting is provided by A Small Orange via Downhill Battle. Our other costs are paid for out of our own pockets or raised by seeking donations from our supporters. We will shortly be able to accept donations from the general public. We are also awaiting funding from our first small grant. In the future, we hope to finance via a mix of donations, grants, and merchandise sales.

Campus groups are generally responsible for their own expenses. Their funding usually comes from their members, their schools, or mini-grants from outside funders.

Are you a non-profit? is a non-profit organization incorporated in the state of Florida (see our records). We are not yet registered as a tax-exempt organization with the IRS or exempt from Florida state sales tax.

How can I start a group at my school?

We're on an activist packet that explains all this. Until that's done, you can see some of the resources that currently exist.


  • What do FC groups / FC.o believe? or What do FC.o members believe?
  • What do I need to believe to be a member? or What are the official positions on certain topics, so I can see whether I agree with you?
  • How dogmatic are you?

How can I help?

There are many things you can do to help out

For starters, you can: