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Re: Outdated GNU config (config.{sub,guess}) and autotools-dev

On Mon, 23 Jul 2001, Marcus Brinkmann wrote:

> On Mon, Jul 23, 2001 at 12:56:40PM -0500, Steve Langasek wrote:
> > Well, if someone has a snapshot of the archive from the time the package was
> > built, then we can arrange to provide the version of autotools-dev from that
> > snapshot to people who are interested, thereby allowing us the means of
> > complying with the GPL (though not under 3a or the related exception).

> You are trying to talk your way out.

Certainly.  This is the stuff law is made of.  Unless you believe that the
issue here is ethical rather than legal, pragmatic arguments are eminently

> First you say there is no violation.  Then you say that one woul have to
> proof that there is a violation.  Now you say that if one has proved that
> there is a violation, the proof itself makes it possible to "retroactive"
> comply with the license.  This may work for a school boys home page, but for
> Debian it is not a good foundation to stay on.

Nothing retroactive about it.  If such an archive exists and is accessible to
the parties involved in the suit, it's possible to comply with the terms of
the GPL, prior to any suit taking place.  If the archive does not exist, or is
not accessible to the parties involved in the lawsuit, then it would not be
possible to prove in a court of law that a violation took place.

> I am looking for ways to comply with the license in the first place,
> in an inambiguous, technically satisfying way.  From what else you wrote,
> I take it we don't share this goal, and going over the same points over
> and over again does not make sense to me.

That's all well and good for you to say, but it still doesn't tell me why
you believe it's dangerous or wrong for this to be done in Debian.

Steve Langasek
postmodern programmer

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