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Re: Leadership, effects on Debian and open source community

--On Wed, Dec 2, 1998 3:47 pm -0800 "Joseph Carter" <knghtbrd@debian.org>

> On Wed, Dec 02, 1998 at 11:29:58PM +0000, Jules Bean wrote:

>> Since the regents of UCB are not going to release another version of the
>> utils, it won't be 'kicked' back into life.  And no one else has the
>> to remove the advertising clause.  So Apache is the only affected piece
>> software.  And I do think that the advertising clause is unpleasant.
> Sure it's unpleasant.  But it's not unreasonable.  If someone was making a
> version of Debian designed for a server and one of their points was
> something about Apache, they'd have to have down with the rest of the
> print a little line about the origins of apache.  And it's more than just
> Apache that this applies to.

It's not unreasonable, no.  Neither is it unreasonable to ask people to pay
real money for software you've spent real time developing.  And yet, we both
believe in free software... (don't we?).

>> However, unwilling to make apache non-free, we'll probably have to live
>> it.
>> I also strongly disapprove of patch licenses, including that which
>> apparently Knuth has put of TeX (although there was a little confusion
>> that one).  Maybe we have to put up with that too, though..
> Ahh, I see.  Rather than have a good policy to describe what is or isn't
> free that's real simple and to the point that we can stand behind and be
> proud of, you suggest we tighten our guidelines to the point that much of
> the software we'd want is no longer considered free and the safest choice
> a license is the GPL.
> Of course, we realize that we can't do this because it'd break Debian as a
> distribution, so we have a little caveat that we can compromise on our
> principles whenever we feel a package is important enough that the DFSG
> doesn't matter because it's a must have, like apache and tex...

Hmm... well.  Yes.  It is a compromise, isn't it?  I'd rather software
didn't have advertising clauses, or patch clauses.  Should I not admit that
fact?  I then go on to agree with you that we can't disallow these in the
DFSG, since doing so would not give us a workable distribution.  I'm
certainly not suggesting that we apply the standard in an uneven fashion. 
Certainly, if TeX is allowed the patch clause, then any software must be
allowed the patch clause.  I'm just saying that I wish we didn't need the
patch clause.

> And we'll just compromise our morals, our commitment, and our credibility
> away.  Congratulations Debian, you're the next Eric Raymond.  Well meaning
> and with high principles, but ready to compromise whenever we think we
> to.  I cannot find this acceptable in any way, shape, or form.

I'm confused by you here.  What is your suggestion?  We don't compromise,
and hence chuck out TeX and apache?


|  Jelibean aka  | jules@jellybean.co.uk         |  6 Evelyn Rd        |
|  Jules aka     | jules@debian.org              |  Richmond, Surrey   |
|  Julian Bean   | jmlb2@hermes.cam.ac.uk        |  TW9 2TF *UK*       |
|  War doesn't demonstrate who's right... just who's left.             |
|  When privacy is outlawed... only the outlaws have privacy.          |

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