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Re: Social Contract GR's effect on sarge

On Mon, Apr 26, 2004 at 05:39:37AM -0400, Glenn Maynard wrote:
> On Mon, Apr 26, 2004 at 10:38:29AM +0200, Florian Weimer wrote:
> > Furthermore, any bitmap rendering of a vector drawing has to be
> > removed if the vector drawing is not available, and all Postscript
> > files without source code have to be removed.  This audit is a

[Postscript files can be source code; it is a Turing-complete
programming language, albeit with lousy support for IO, and we do ship
several such programs]

> > substantial task.
> Is this GR actually intended to say that source must be available for all
> data?  I only see it saying that all data in Debian must be Free, which
> is what the social contract already said.
> It doesn't seem to actually change anything at all, except to shut up
> the people who insist on the old, tired arguments that documentation isn't 
> software and that the DFSG doesn't apply to documentation.

That was the intention, yes. debian-legal has always exercised
flexibility in reading the DFSG for non-programs, and will have to
continue to do so until it can be suitably amended in a similar
fashion (I plan to start things moving on this in the next couple of
weeks). "Source" is usually interpreted like the GPL's "preferred form
for modification".

> If this GR actualy changed anything, and "remain 100% free software" meant
> something different than "remain 100% free", then there must be something
> in Debian which is not software.  I believe that's false.  I suspect that's
> why this was called an "editorial" change; it doesn't change the meaning
> of the social contract, it only clarifies it.


> I don't see how it could affect the release.  Was the previous release plan
> really based on an argument that "software" does not include firmware and
> documentation?

I was rather surprised myself by the notion that the release plan had
been depending on a loophole in the wording in order to excuse
violating the spirit of the SC.

  .''`.  ** Debian GNU/Linux ** | Andrew Suffield
 : :' :  http://www.debian.org/ |
 `. `'                          |
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