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Re: DFSG2: Qt, KDE

Could you submit this, or something similar, to debian-announce so the
public can see what is going on. The anonymous posters on Slashdot are
showing their usual ignorance and making wild statements about what is
being done.

It would probably be a good idea to state that the final decision will
be by vote of the developers.

Jay Treacy

On Thu, Dec 03, 1998 at 06:35:36PM +0000, Ian Jackson wrote:
> Many people seem to think that I've been writing the DFSG2 just to
> spite Qt and/or KDE.  They think this despite my denial and despite
> the fact that I have been a longstanding opponent to the patch clause
> (which they think is my way to throw out Qt), and despite the fact
> that I have many times said that I planned to rewrite the DFSG, and
> despite the fact (as far as I can tell from the discussion) that it's
> quite likely that the new QPL will meet the DFSG2 despite not meeting
> the DFSG1 !  In fact, I have not even read the new draft QPL, mainly
> because of lack of time.
> Furthermore, let me state for the record that I have nothing against
> Qt and/or KDE if and when they become free software.  It is true that
> I have been opposed to some of Troll and KDE's actions, but these
> actions are purely ones that I see as error, misrepresentation and/or
> playing fast-and-loose with the GPL, which I feel is one of the
> cornerstones of the free software system.
> I believe that my current DFSG2 draft does not prevent Troll from
> achieving what I think is actually their objective: they want to
> retain the (sole) right to produce proprietary software based on _any_
> contributions to Qt from anyone.
> The DFSG1, on the other hand, probably _does_ prevent this, because it
> requires that the licence permit distribution of modified versions
> _under the same licence_.  The DFSG2 draft allows Qt to force modified
> versions to use a different licence.
> I have heard many good things about KDE from users, and I look forward
> to the time when KDE and Gnome can both be shipped by Debian, and can
> compete on technical merit rather than political and licensing
> grounds.
> I haven't used either KDE or Gnome, so I have no personal opinion
> about the relative technical merits.  But, I strongly believe that
> diversity and competition are essential to maintaining the quality of
> free software.  Think how much more complacent any Linux distribution,
> including Debian (mine) or Red Hat (the most popular), would be if the
> others didn't exist ?
> So, I'm glad that people from Debian are talking to Troll.  I think it
> would be a good thing for everyone if Qt and KDE could be truly free,
> so that we could distribute them.
> But, considerations about Qt and KDE aren't going to change my mind -
> either way - about what software freedom means
> Ian.
> -- 
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