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Re: Bruce's rhetoric

[please do not cc me]

On Fri, 14 Nov 1997, Paul J Thompson wrote:

> Actually, if non-free were renamed to non-dfsg then I would alo be in favor of 
> tightening the curtain  little on the main distribution.  My real problem with 
> this all is that by saying non-free and meaning non-dfsg, we are redefining a 
> term (most people in the world think of non-free to mean simply something for 
> which you don't have to pay).  Lets be more specific then non-free.

Free doesn't really refer to the price.  Debian isn't "freeware" in the
windoze sense, but software that is free.

To quote from the GPL:

  When we speak of free software, we are referring to freedom, not
price.  Our General Public Licenses are designed to make sure that you
have the freedom to distribute copies of free software (and charge for
this service if you wish), that you receive source code or can get it
if you want it, that you can change the software or use pieces of it
in new free programs; and that you know you can do these things.          

Programs that are not DFSG compliant are not free - you cannot do as you
wish with them.  (For that matter, the GPL is not completely and totally
free either - its restriction is that software must remain available, but
one can of worms is enough for now).

I think this definition of free fits right in with the one in the
dictionary that talks about liberty.  If you have a better term, you might
suggest it.. I know in Italian 'gratuito' refers to money and 'libero'
refers to free as in freedom.  Can you think of a better word than free
that more unequivocally means what we intend?


David Welton                          http://www.efn.org/~davidw                

	Debian GNU/Linux - www.debian.org

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