IRC Network Changes

We recently released Pidgin 2.14.5 and mentioned in that post that we changed the default IRC network in Pidgin from Freenode to We’ve also posted on Reddit, Twitter, and Facebook that we established #pidgin on and aim to meet our users “wherever they may flock.” As part of those posts we said we were monitoring the ongoing situation, implying that we would take whatever we felt would be appropriate action when necessary.

Yesterday (2021-06-15), Freenode threw away its decades of history. All user and channel registrations were removed. All active connections to the “old” IRC infrastructure of Freenode were terminated, forcing everyone onto the “new” Freenode. As part of this, Pidgin developers' nickname registrations and, in fact, #pidgin’s registration too, were lost. This is the ultimate outcome of what was described as a “hostile takeover” of the Freenode IRC network some weeks ago.

We have re-registered #pidgin on the new Freenode infrastructure and fully intend to maintain our presence on the new Freenode. However, as a result of these Freenode shenanigans and the overall general movement of the open source software community away from Freenode, we decided that we will now consider our presence on the network to be our “official” IRC presence. Additionally, we also registered #pidgin on the OFTC IRC network and are maintaining a presence there.

You will now notice that the IRC link on the side bar has been moved to our contact page and now points to’s web chat and that we’ve removed the Freenode links and information on our contact page. This is in keeping with our decision to make our “official” IRC presence.

We aren’t leaving Freenode as a project, although some people who used to be stalwart presences in #pidgin there may not be present anymore. We’re going to continue maintaining our presence there as long as the network is not hostile to our presence. We continue to aim to meet our users wherever they may flock.

Looking to reach us via XMPP? Check out the new PidginChat service!