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Re: Comments on copyright !

I would like to codify my proposed free-software definition as project
policy, but I have been busy with other project issues for the past two
months, and that's why I let the ball drop on it for a while. If we
could hold off the free-software-policy debate until I return from my
vacation that would be much appreciated. Dan Quinlan (who will be
interim project leader while I'm gone) does seem to share my viewpoint
on this issue.

One reason that I feel strongly about the "free only with Debian isn't
free" issue is that in the case of software that is licensed to be free
only with some other distribution than Debian, Debian can not take that
software and make use of it without negociating our own license. So from
our perspective the software would not be free at all. I would prefer not
to encourage that sort of license even when it is to our own benefit.

In the meantime, a guide to non-free packages for CD manufacturers, as I
proposed to Scott, would help the situation immensely.

Here again is my proposed guidline for free software.



1. The software may be redistributed by anyone. The license may restrict
   a source file from being distributed in modified form, as long as it
   allows modified binary files, and files that are distributed along
   with the source for the express purpose of modifying the source.

2. The license may not restrict any party from selling or giving
   away the software, nor may it require a royalty or license fee.

3. The license must not discriminate against any person or group of
    persons unless their use would violate a law.

4. The license must not restrict anyone from making use of the program
   in a specific field of endeavor where such use would not violate any
   law. For example, it may not restrict the program from being used in
   a business, or from being used for genetic research.

5. The program must include source code, and must allow distribution in
   source as well as binary form.

6. The rights attached to the program must apply to all to whom the
   program is redistributed without the need for execution of an
   additional license by those parties.

7. The rights attached to the program must not depend on the program's
   being part of a Debian system. If a person extracts the program from
   Debian and uses it or distributes it without Debian, that person and
   any people to whom the program is redistributed should have the same
   rights as those that are granted in conjunction with the Debian system.

Bruce Perens K6BP   Bruce@Pixar.com   510-215-3502
Finger bruce@master.Debian.org for PGP public key.
PGP fingerprint = 88 6A 15 D0 65 D4 A3 A6  1F 89 6A 76 95 24 87 B3 

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