Re: Results for Debian's Position on the GFDL
Adam McKenna writes:
> What he meant was, the operations you describe are not operations that
> prevent users who already have a copy of the document from exercising their
> rights as granted by the license and copyright law.
> He's essentially saying that what you are describing is outside of the scope
> of the license. A license sets forth terms under which something can be
> copied. If a user is not distributing the document, he doesn't need to
> comply with the terms.
If you copy a copyrighted work, you need permission from law (which is
limited to things like a single backup copy, fair use, and so forth)
or from the copyright owner. Under copyright law and under the
language of the FDL, it does not matter whether you make that copy for
distribution or not.
> > I think the position you describe is conceivable, even if it is
> > non-free. Richard Stallman was well-known to have shared his account
> > password in previous times; it does not seem impossible that he (or
> > the FSF) would advocate that users do similar things.
> Nothing's impossible, but it's unlikely that someone would put a clause in a
> license that had a net effect of requiring that all computer security be done
> away with. (That is, if he actually expected anyone to use the license,
Computer security need not be entirely done away with, just done away
with in the context of works under this license. At my alma mater,
public-access machines had password-free accounts with special-purpose
shells; one such account would display a map of the cluster and who
was logged into the machines, another would clear the screen, and so
forth. It is straightforward to configure an account to display a
document on login.