Computer scientist Richard Stallman resigns from MIT after defending Jeffrey Epstein – CNET

Computer scientist Richard Stallman resigns from MIT after defending Jeffrey Epstein – CNET
Richard Stallman, President of the Free Software Foundation

Richard Stallman, the founder of the Free Software Foundation, has resigned from the nonprofit as well as his position at MIT.

Massimiliano Ferraro/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images

Computer scientist and free-software advocate Richard Stallman announced Monday that he has resigned his position at MIT‘s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab. Stallman’s resignation comes after he suggested in an email thread that one of convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein’s underage victims may have presented herself as “entirely willing.”

“I am resigning effective immediately from my position in CSAIL at MIT,” Stallman wrote Monday in an email. “I am doing this due to pressure on MIT and me over a series of misunderstandings and mischaracterizations.”

Stallman also resigned as president and board of directors of the Free Software Foundation, the foundation announced Monday. Stallman, the creator of the GNU operating system, founded the nonprofit in 1985.

Epstein died in August of an apparent suicide in jail while facing federal sex-trafficking charges. Federal prosecutors in New York alleged Epstein sexually abused and exploited dozens of underage girls as young as 14.

Stallman’s resignation comes just days after Motherboard published an email thread in which Stallman suggests that “most plausible scenario” is that one of Epstein’s underage victims “presented herself to [former colleague Marvin Minsky] as entirely willing.”

When someone else on the thread points out that Virginia Giuffre was 17 when she was forced to have sex with Minsky, a pioneer in Artificial Intelligence and founder of the Media Lab, Stallman argued that “it is morally absurd to define ‘rape’ in a way that depends on

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