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Re: Debian derivatives and the Maintainer: field (again)

On Wed, Jan 18, 2006 at 12:34:33AM +0100, Florian Weimer wrote:
> * Matt Zimmerman:
> > It is important, in particular, to account for the fact that Ubuntu is not
> > the only Debian derivative, and that proposals like yours would amount to
> > Debian derivatives being obliged to fork *every source package in Debian*
> > for the sake of changing a few lines of text.
> Such a change could be implemented in the toolchain.  IIRC, you
> rebuild everything anyway, so this wouldn't be such a terrible thing
> to do.

We don't rebuild every source package, which is what the proposal was about
(modifying source packages).

I outlined the options and their costs as I saw them here:


> FWIW, I think your implied assumption that all Debian derivatives should
> be treated the same is flawed.  Ubuntu is just not like any other
> derivative, it's a significant operation on its own.  Its commercial
> backer is apparently able to pay quite a few Debian developers, several of
> them among the core team.  There is a significant user base, and so on.
> Like it or not, Ubuntu is a bit special.

I can't accept this; if there is no principle here which should be applied
consistently, then it's entirely unfair to attack Ubuntu.  Certainly, there
are things about Ubuntu which are unique, but none of them change the issues
at hand.

Do you realize that Xandros, who maintains a Debian derivative which they
box and sell for US$50-$129 per copy, leaves the Maintainer field
unmodified, and as far as I'm aware, was doing so for a period of *years*
before Ubuntu even existed?  This never seemed to bother anyone, and
personally, I don't think it's a big deal either.

Seriously, it's entirely unreasonable to single out Ubuntu on this issue.

 - mdz

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