Re: DEP-5: Please clarify the meaning of "same licence and share copyright holders"
On Sat, Jun 13, 2009 at 10:53:11AM +1000, Ben Finney wrote:
> Wouter Verhelst <email@example.com> writes:
> > I'm finding it difficult to believe the argument "oh, but this isn't
> > going to be mandatory".
> I don't know anyone making the argument that there should *never* be a
> mandatory machine-parseable ‘debian/copyright’ format. Rather, I see the
> argument that we don't *currently* have such a format, and that no such
> format should mandatory in the immediate future.
That's an argument I can agree with. In fact, it's what I was trying to
However, if that's the goal, then the format should be acceptable for as
many people as possible, and practical or technical objections should be
> The path to achieving such a format that we can promote as mandatory
> must, in my opinion, be through promoting it as an *optional* format,
> and improving both the format and the acceptance of it.
Agreed. However, that format should be sufficiently acceptable before
it's being introduced, if you don't want issues.
> Such a path, if it ever to reach a point where we can begin to promote
> making it mandatory, necessarily passes through a point where those
> who don't follow it voluntarily are in a small minority, and of those
> who don't follow it, none have any respectable objection to it.
However, if the objection is that the work involved to create such a
copyright file is going to be so massive that it's going to be a major
burden for those who maintain large (amounts of) packages, then I'd say
the proposal needs some more work.
> > Please, if you're going to pursue this, make sure it's either
> > acceptable to everyone, or not even attempted in the first place.
> I'm of the opinion that “acceptable to everyone” can only be
> deomstrated by attempting it (even without knowing whether that can be
> actieved) and trying to get many people using it for their packages
However, when there is a specification, it's going to be hard to change
it, if that turns out to be necessary. Replacing "bad current practice"
is much, much harder than replacing "no current practice". Therefore,
the first attempt should be as good as possible.
I'm not convinced this is being attempted.
The biometric identification system at the gates of the CIA headquarters
works because there's a guard with a large gun making sure no one is
trying to fool the system.