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Re: Free non-software stuff and what does it mean. [was Re: General Resolution: Force AMD64 into Sarge]

Glenn Maynard wrote:

>That is, on principle I agree with Andrew, but in practice I'm leaning
>to agree with you (but I'm not personally convinced strongly either way).
>In practice, Debian has never fought the source-code battle for images,
>fonts, sounds, movie clips, etc., and it's not clear that it's in its
>best interests to begin doing so.
>However, in practice, GR 2004-003 (deferred) is clear in saying that
>everything in Debian must follow the DFSG; the only way I can see around
>the implication that all of Debian must have source is playing word
>games with the word "program"; we should be able to do better than that.
>In short, I strongly agree with the Project's collective opinion[1] that
>all data--images, sounds, fonts--must be under a Free license.  I'm not
>so convinced of requiring source for those, however.
>[1] as expressed in 2004-003
If upstream supplies source in the upstream, as per Andrews definition,
then I think that is OK. But if they don't, then that should not
constitute violation of DFSG.

We *need* a definition of "program" in the DFSG. This is the only way to
fix the ambiguity.

>>I'm cc'ing -legal because I need to know who is right on this. Are we
>>going to start harassing upstream over "sources" to jpegs and oggs? Or
>>data, since it is inherently binary and thus non-readable by a human in
>>raw form, source in itself? That is, if,
>>1. data format is known, and
>>2. data is under a free license according to DFSG
>>then such data is free according to DFSG.
>ELF is a known data format, but it's very rarely source; a typical ELF
>will not pass the DFSG without the real-world source code equivalent.  I
>hope we're all agreed on that, at least.
Of course. When I said `data`, I meant data as in 'inherently binary',
ie. inherently in non-human readable format during all stages of its
modifications. Software is not inherently binary by that definition.

Building your applications one byte at a time

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