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Re: Clarifying the mandatory contents of the Debian copyright file.

Russ Allbery <rra@debian.org> writes:

>> Note that "Copyright (C) 2008 Peter Miller" is different than "Copyright
>> (C) 2011 Peter Miller" is different than "Copyright (C) 1991, 2012 Peter
>> Miller", so the cross product is going to be substantial for long lived
>> projects, even when the number of contributors is small.
> I am absolutely certain that this is not the intention of DEP-5, and I
> would be in favor of modifying it to make that clear if you could identify
> the places where you got that mistaken impression.

I would support making this clearer by adding the example above to DEP5.
When I have written DEP5 copyright files, I have been uncertain about
this aspect too, but I can't point to anything directly in the document
that gave me this impression (nor to anything that would have given me
the reversed impression).  An example would probably have helped.

Thinking even further, maybe there should be a tutorial at the end of
DEP5 on how to convert an existing compliant debian/copyright file into
a DEP5-compliant debian/copyright file.  As far as I understand from
this discussion, it would be sufficient to merely make it syntactically
conform to the DEP5 file format, typically by folding the old data under
a 'Files: *' header.  If this is the case, and there is an example on
how to do it, this could trigger more DEP5 adoption.


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