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Re: Amendment to GR on GFDL, and the changes to the Social Contract

On Thu, 19 Jan 2006 22:18:15 -0500, Christopher Martin <chrsmrtn@debian.org> said: 

> On Thursday 19 January 2006 21:27, Don Armstrong wrote:
>> The Secretary has the authority to adjudicate constitutional
>> disputes of interpretation under §7.1.2.[1] Since modifying the
>> Foundation Documents requires a modification to the constitution,
>> it seems reasonable that the secretary would adjudicate whether a
>> particular GR would require such a modification to remain
>> consistent.

> The authority to adjudicate constitutional disputes is not the same
> as the power to interpret the DFSG, which while a foundation
> document, is NOT the constitution. And therefore it is not the role
> of the Secretary to determine whether a license complies with the
> GFDL, and it is therefore NOT within his or her power to declare
> that a vote on such a question of interpretation requires a
> supermajority (because this would necessarily imply a prior judgment
> on the DFSG-freeness of the license in question).

        Since the ballot for this GR requires one to make a judgement
 call on the license, I would be remiss in my duties if I did not make
 a proper determination for the majority requirements for the
 amendment. As I see my duties, I _have_ to determine the proper
 procedure and ballot for this vote.

>> A stance has to be made one way or the other;

> The correct stance for the Secretary to adopt would be not to exceed
> his or her powers, and therefore let the vote occur without
> pre-judging it by imposing a supermajority requirement, and then
> accept the outcome of the vote regardless of personal opinion.

        It is my judgement that I am indeed not exceeding my powers.

> We have not had any GRs on the GFDL. That the status of the GFDL was
> in people's minds when debating recent GRs is immaterial. Nothing in
> the GRs refers to the GFDL, or to any other specific license.

        Quite true. Nothing is preventing that question from being
 posed to the developers as a GR. I note, however, the release team,
 as delegates, have already determined that GFDL licensed works are
 not free, and thus must be removed from Etch.

        The developers may chose to override their decision, as
 provided for in the constitution.

>> 1: Odly enough, it's not clear that the developers can override a
>> decision that the Secretary has made,[2] although I'd be surprised
>> if a Secretary would fail to heed a clear overriding vote.

> I'm not trying to override the Secretary in any formal
> constitutional manner. I'm simply trying to convince him not to
> overstep the bounds of his powers by making a decision which he is
> not entitled to make.

        If it is not already clear, you have failed to convince me
 that I am indeed overstepping my bounds.

Though many hands make light work, too many cooks spoil the broth.
Manoj Srivastava   <srivasta@debian.org>  <http://www.debian.org/%7Esrivasta/>
1024D/BF24424C print 4966 F272 D093 B493 410B  924B 21BA DABB BF24 424C

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