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Re: suggestion: DFDG - Debian Free Documentation Guidelines

On Wed, Nov 13, 2002 at 09:27:32AM -0600, John Goerzen wrote:
> On Wed, Nov 13, 2002 at 10:17:25AM -0500, Alan Shutko wrote:
> > John Goerzen <jgoerzen@complete.org> writes:
> > You should.  But that criterion doesn't cover all cases that people
> > are concerned about.  For instance, no matter how much you modify a
> > piece of software, why do you need to modify the RFCs?  Or, consider
> > GFDL invariant sections.
> You might want to modify RFCs because a couple of pages could make a nice
> insert in your own manual.  Or you're drafting a successor to an RFC.  Or
> you're basing a protocol on one described in an RFC.

Insert: Covered already, I believe, as a partial reproduction. This is
not the same thing as a modification. Successor: if you're following
proper RFC procedures, you're writing a *draft* RFC which refers (possibly
extensively) to the origional. This, also, is not modification. Protocol:
you can't implement a new protocol that differs from an old RFC, change
the RFC, and expect anyone to believe it's compliant just because you
have a non-approved 'standards' document. If you're documenting your
extensions, then it is supposed to be a new RFC, referring to the old one
(vis extensions to ESMTP).

> DFSG already allows there to be a term such as "You may distribute a
> modified form of the RFC822 document, but you may not call it RFC822 if it's
> been modified."  To me, that seems sufficient.

As was noted the last time this came up, the prior expectations of
what 'free' means and how you interact with documentation are both
long-established (how long have people been writing papers with
Bibliographies and refences sections?) and significantly different
standards from those applied to software.

It serves very little purpose to insist that we treat apples like oranges;
true, they're both fruit, and they're both easily spoiled if not taken care
of properly, but you'll get a bad taste in your mouth if you just bite into
an orange.
Joel Baker                           System Administrator - lightbearer.com
lucifer@lightbearer.com              http://users.lightbearer.com/lucifer/

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