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Re: Sun Java available from non-free

On Tue, Jun 06, 2006 at 11:34:10PM +0100, MJ Ray wrote:
> Anthony Towns <aj@azure.humbug.org.au> [...]
> > And people are welcome to hold that opinion and speak about it all they
> > like, but the way Debian makes the actual call on whether a license
> > is suitable for distribution in non-free isn't based on who shouts the
> > loudest on a mailing list, it's on the views of the archive maintainers.
> The package maintainer did not ask debian-legal (serious bug) 

That's mistaken. debian-legal is a useful source of advice, not a
decision making body. That's precisely as it should be, since there
is absolutely no accountability for anyone on debian-legal -- anyone,
developer or not, who agrees with the social contract or not, can reply
to queries raised on this list with their own opinion. If people have
weighed the costs and benefits of contacting -legal and decided not to,
that's entirely their choice.

> and I'm
> really surprised that the archive maintainers felt no need to consult
> developers about this licence, in public or private, or SPI, before
> agreeing to indemnify Sun so broadly.

We do not indemnify Sun for any actions Sun takes.

> I know that you are confident in distributing the software under those
> terms, but it looks to me like most of -legal would have picked a third
> way: keep negotiating and wait for terms in which they are confident.

As far as I've seen most of -legal would have taken the same attitude
you have -- "there's already working java in main", "I don't use non-free
anyway", found a few token problems and stopped helping Sun at all.

Fortunately, that's fine, since -legal is only a useful place to consult,
not the only way Debian can deal with people who want to make their
software available to Debian users.

> So, I don't think any reasonable person would prefer Sun's FAQ or emails
> when they aren't clearly explaining particular terms in an obvious way.

If you want to dismiss the people who disagree with you, including
myself, as unreasonable, then there's not really any point having this

> Is there even any dispute that the DLJ indemnity seeks to overturn all
> the "no warranty" statements in debian and leave the licensee liable
> for the effects of everything in our operating system?

If you're actually claiming that's what it does, then I guess there is.


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