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About the FSF Jitsi Meet server

by Greg Farough Contributions Published on May 28, 2020 03:27 PM
Being able to communicate with your friends and family using free software is one of the many benefits to an associate membership.

In order to help our members communicate in freedom, we are providing a Jitsi Meet server for their personal and noncommercial use. You can create a channel by logging into the server using your FSF associate membership credentials. Only associate members can create rooms, but any person or group can participate in the conversation by entering your room name (and optionally, a password).

To use the system, follow these steps:

  • Go to https://jitsi.member.fsf.org/;

  • Create a room (for privacy reasons it is better to use something random as a name);

  • Click on "I am the host" in the modal window to be asked for your membership credentials.

You are now the moderator of the room. Other guests can join using the same URL, without needing to login. For extra privacy, we recommend giving the room a password by clicking on the "i" icon in the bottom right.

Privacy and encryption in the FSF Jitsi Meet instance

The FSF made changes to the code we are running, in order to enhance privacy and software freedom and published the source code to motivate others to host their own instances. The FSF instance does not use any third party servers for network initialization and does not recommend or link to any potentially problematic services.

Jitsi Meet offers end-to-end encryption for conversations between two people. For conversations between three or more people, there will always be encryption at the network level, but you still have to place some level of trust in the server operators that process your video stream. Because the FSF controls the physical machine, we can offer you the respect for privacy and freedom you have come to expect from us. The FSF servers do not store any voice, video, or messages from calls, and logging is minimal -- for the purpose of troubleshooting and abuse prevention only. Jitsi is working on developing end-to-end encryption for calls with more than two people, and we will implement these changes on our instance as soon as this becomes available.

As a nonprofit, the FSF has limited resources, which may at times affect the server capacity. We will experiment with different parameters and limitations, and improve the instance as needed, updating the repo accordingly. To report any issues, you can email info@fsf.org, or for a more immediate response, you can seek guidance from the community in our #fsf IRC channel on Freenode.

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