[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: libreadline

On Wed, 2002-05-08 at 18:27, Joel Baker wrote:
> On Wed, May 08, 2002 at 06:01:09PM -0500, Branden Robinson wrote:
> > On Wed, May 08, 2002 at 03:04:28PM -0600, Joel Baker wrote:
> > > Since Debian has a policy of considering all DFSG-free licenses to be
> > > equal
> > 
> > Debian has no such policy; have you even read DFSG 4?
> I have. In fact, just to be sure, I re-read it 30 seconds ago. I see
> nothing in it which asserts that software which complies via DFSG 4 is
> "less free", or provides a "freeness operator" by which to make any such
> comparison. Encouraging people to make our jobs easier is completely
> orthogonal to the question of freeness.

Who said anything about "less free"?  You said "all DFSG licenses are
equal", Branden said "no, they aren't" and provided evidence of a
preference, stated as an "encouragement".

Besides, DFSG 4 doesn't say anything about its purpose being to "make
our jobs easier", either.  It's less of a stretch to imply that the
"Debian FREE Software Guidelines" talk about freedom than it is to imply
that they talk about usefulness.

> However, the first assertion points out that I was careless with my
> language, and I do apologize. I believe it would be more accurate to say
> that Debian (as a project, not as developers) has a *practice* of viewing
> DFSG compliance as 9/10ths of the law. Which direction that other 1/10th
> goes in is entirely up to personal biases, in my experience.

If you say so.  OTOH, we weren't satisfied with the QPL when that
license came down because of its uncooperative nature re: the
GPL-licensed KDE components.  I don't think that debate was one of
"personal bias" either.

> > I have long thought that Debian ought to explicitly recognize certain
> > licenses as being in a "Hall of Fame"; those being licenses that are
> > widely-used, well-understood, and which work well with other licenses.
> > 
> > My suggestion for this list would be:
> > 
> > * MIT/X11
> > * 2- and 3-clause BSD
> > * LGPL
> > * GPL
> DFSG 10 seems to accomplish this? Certainly, I could see perhaps an update
> to include the LGPL (since the GPL is there already, and if anything it is
> more compatible, by purpose) and MIT/X11, but I'd say that we do, in fact,
> already recognize such licenses (which is a good thing).

At least some versions of the Artistic License were considered bad by
some, mostly because of vagueness as I recall.

Maybe the contents of /usr/share/common-licenses should be considered

> All I all, I personally find the GPL's restrictions to be far more of an
> encumberance than someone who just wants a little credit for the work that
> they put into something, and thus have a clause requiring advertising to
> make some acknowlegement of their work if it's used. But that's only my
> opinion, and if you want to start deciding "freeness" values, well, I think
> that the S:N ratio on d-d will drop even further than it already is. I'd
> rather just settle for deciding if things meet the DFSG, and leave it at
> that - it seems like a significant part of these codifiy what "Free" means
> for us.
> Or, to summarize it, if we're going to get into making that sort of value
> judgement, I want the values used to judge to be mine. You want them to be
> yours. This does not scale well.

I don't think that there's much controversy over whether the OpenSSL
license is worse than the GPL.  Even if you can endure the advertising
clause, there's the "you can't license this code under other licenses,
such as the GPL" clause, which I find to be much more noxious and

It's fallacious to take a difficult and controversial choice (such as
GPL vs. no-ad-clause BSD) and infer that all choices in that area of
inquiry will be equally difficult to make.  This one in particular seems
to be a no-brainer.

To UNSUBSCRIBE, email to debian-devel-request@lists.debian.org
with a subject of "unsubscribe". Trouble? Contact listmaster@lists.debian.org

Reply to: