Berkeley Institute for Free Speech Online
Mission: To ensure free access worldwide to information on the Internet
through technical means.
The Berkeley Institute for Free Speech Online (BIFSO)
was established in early 2011 to continue and broaden the work of the founder,
who has been writing anti-censorship software since early 1996. While BIFSO
currently focuses on updating and maintaining the popular open-source
software known as
CGIProxy, the ultimate goal is to support other
anti-censorship software projects as well, and to engage in related research.
BIFSO differs from other censorship-fighting organizations in its specific
focus on software, rather than on legal, political, journalistic, or other
aspects of censorship.
BIFSO is a 501(c)(3) organization, meaning all donations to BIFSO are
Thank you for your interest in BIFSO!
January 25, 2016:
Exciting news! BIFSO is seeking an experienced Chief Operating Officer
(COO) to help us grow. This is a half-time position (20 hours/week), and
is eligible for benefits. Candidates must be based in California. Please see the
job description for details, and contact
for further info.
July 26, 2013:
Sorry we haven't updated this site in a while, but we've been busy working
on CGIProxy ever since we got the DRL (State Department) grant.
Many features have been added, and with
today's 2.1.7 release,
multiple languages are supported, with room for more when we get the translations.
IRS update: After about 2.5 years, we are still trying to get our 501(c)(3) status
from the IRS. It looks like BIFSO was caught up in the recent over-zealous IRS
screening, since "open source" was on the IRS' BOLO ("be on the look out") list
that made the news recently. We still hope and plan to get our 501(c)(3) status.
December 9, 2011:
More great news-- we managed to update CGIProxy's Flash support much sooner
than expected. Among other things, this means that YouTube works again through
CGIProxy. Version 2.1 has just been released, and you can get it from the
October 10, 2011:
Great news-- a few days ago, BIFSO secured a major grant from the US State Department to develop
and extend CGIProxy for at least the next 21 months! Work has already begun, and we
plan to start releasing new versions soon.
Just so you know, all of the new features paid for by this grant are our own
ideas. The State Department agreed to fund our ideas and suggestions, but they
themselves didn't request any particular features.
We still don't have our 501(c)(3) status from the IRS, but neither have they
rejected us. Long story short, if you ever want to start a non-profit organization
in the US, prepare to wait a year or more for results from the IRS.
July 4, 2011:
Finally putting up this Web site!
Currently, we're still waiting on getting our 501(c)(3) (tax-exempt) status
from the IRS. Our request has been expedited by the IRS, so we hope to have
that status by the end of July.
© Copyright 2011-2016, Berkeley Institute for Free Speech Online