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Re: DFSG violations in Lenny: Summarizing the choices

On Sun, Nov 9, 2008 at 8:33 PM, Sam Morris <sam@robots.org.uk> wrote:

> Here's an interesting problem with DFSG-free firmware such as those
> created by the FreeMAC project (for prism54 cards): if they never get FCC-
> certified, is it legal for Debian to distribute them?

That would be something for a lawyer to answer (such as SPI counsel).

> They seem to fall into the category of DFSG-free-but-illegal software
> such as dvdcss or the patented software that we refuse to distribute.
> So unless the project bends a little here, users are never going to get
> working hardware no matter what happens.

I doubt it would be a good idea for the ftpmasters to expose
themselves and Debian/SPI to legal risk by allowing distribution of
illegal software.

Solutions to these problems might include;

Moving ftp-master to sealand (or similar) and implementing a system to
prevent the mirrors from distributing packages illegal in their
jurisdictions; this is unlikely to happen any time soon and would
probably be prohibitively impractical.

A separate ftp-master and mirror system for such packages; already
implemented as debian-multimedia.org and debian-unofficial.org)

Fix the jurisdictions to be more sane; this is something to work on
outside of Debian.



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