Re: non-free and users?
On Tue, Jan 20, 2004 at 06:47:42PM +0100, Sergey Spiridonov wrote:
> >>I will be pleased if you will explain, how this can happen, if Debian
> >>will act in proposed way: working on free instead of non-free. How
> >>working on free can produce more problem than working on non-free?
Raul Miller wrote:
> > I already presented some examples (using GFDL). You indicated you didn't
> > want to talk about them. I've presented other examples, as well.
> > Note, I'm talking about "packages we distribute which do not satisfy
> > all of our guidelines" when I say "non-free". I don't really know what
> > you're talking about.
On Tue, Jan 20, 2004 at 07:24:05PM +0100, Sergey Spiridonov wrote:
> I'm talking about example (truly 2 examples) which was presented by me.
> I asked to limit ourselves to this particular problem - I meant package
> which contains license which does not allow to distribute modified
> sources. I think we should solve one problem at a time.
 There are many potential problems -- potential problems (and potential
"reasons why") are probably infinite in number. Though it's probably
true that most are irrelevant to most people.
 Examples are a test of the general case, not a justification for
the general case.
 Hypothetical examples are themselves not specific cases.
> It is not because I do not want to talk about the rest, but because
> it is quite difficult to create well formulated examples without flaws.
> It is difficult to talk about all possible licenses in non-free at
> the same time, since I do not have a good classification.
That's no basis for dropping distribution on the because of problems with
all those possible licenses. That's a basis for making the decision on
a case-by-case basis.
> If you think, that I convinced you about the ethical problem and
> possible way to solve it regarding this example, we should start to talk
> about the rest.
When I've expressed my understanding of your solution to your stated
problem, you indicated that I didn't understand properly. Given that
I'm not understanding what you're saying, I have no way of knowing what
it is that I'd be convinced of, let alone whether or not I am convinced
by what you're saying.
That said, I'll try again:
The ethical dilemma you seem to be talking about involves a software
package which can not be modified to solve a user's problem. You propose
not distributing the package to prevent this dilemma from occurring.
You are specifically focussing on cases where the software license
prevents the solution, though from an ethical point of view that's not
really relevant -- it could just as easily be a code quality issue or
a lack of developer time which is the reason why the software can't be
used to address the user's problem.
In any event, your proposed solution is "do not distribute that software
This "solution" means that the ethical dilemma is no longer present.
But the user is no better off.
You also propose that the time spent on this software could instead by
spent on something else more productive. That may be the case, but it
also might not be the case. There is not enough information in your
hypothesis exclude either case.