Re: non-free and users?
Sergey Spiridonov <email@example.com> writes:
> Daniel Burrows wrote:
>> On Mon, Jan 19, 2004 at 12:43:22PM +0100, Sergey Spiridonov <firstname.lastname@example.org> was heard to say:
>>> Producing and distributing non-free is ethical. If I produce a
>>> package with closed source and distribute it, it is ethical, since
>>> it help people to solve their tasks. It compels me to non-ethical
>>> action when someone, for example, will request sources from me.
>> Suppose you package foo-nonfree, a package whose source code is not
>> available. Some time later, a user requests the sources from you. You
>> reply, "I'm sorry, I don't have the source code and so I can't give it
>> to you."
> I do not have ready example on how one can compel himself to act
> unethical if he distributes program without sources. I propose to
> finish discussing the example which I already presented, before we
> will start to discuss other cases.
Well, I've read it again, and I will put it here :
> I will try to present an example. Let's say we have program 'A'
> without permition to distribute modified sources. It's not
> absolutely non-free - you have freedom to learn how program works,
> to modify it for your own needs, to distribute it without
> modifications. It is unique and there is no free analog.
> If developer agrees with such a limitation he is not able to modify
> this program to help his friend to adapt it for his needs. Developer
> will not be able to distribute modifications to others who also need
> such an improvenment. This contradicts human ethics, because help is
So, if I'm not able to modify a free software because I lack time, I'm
contradicting human ethic ? so I must drop my job to have more time
and to be more ethical ? I'm not sure it was what you said, but it
look like. If I don't adapt a software to someone needs, I'm not doing
any good, but I'm neither doing any bad, so it is a neutral action on
the ethical scale.
By the way, my friend will be better with an ocaml-doc with an error
than without an ocaml-doc, and it will be even better if this
ocaml-doc is well integrated into the debian system (with doc-base and
all other interesting thing).