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Re: copyright precision

On Mon, 15 Aug 2016 at 18:17:52 +0200, Stefano Zacchiroli wrote:
> The problem we're having here is clearly about *tooling*. If we had a
> good toolchain to compile and audit machine-readable debian/copyright
> files without sweating, nobody would complain.

I have three slightly devil's-advocate responses to that:

* If we had a good toolchain to compile and audit this stuff, people
  and companies who want to know the copyright holders could just use
  that to inspect the upstream source code and cut out the middle-man.

* Our copyright files are only correct inasmuch as upstream's copyright
  attribution is correct. I would guess that a large majority of patch
  submitters, even implementors of somewhat major features that are
  certainly copyrightable, don't actually add a copyright notice to the
  files they touched. I certainly don't do that 100% consistently for my
  own contributions; I'm careful to preserve *other people's* copyright
  notices and license grants if I incorporate someone else's code into a
  project, but I think I can confidently say that not all upstreams
  are even that conscientious.

* I will continue to complain as long as my "source" packages are
  expected to contain 87kB monsters like
  which is fairly clearly not anyone's preferred form for modification,
  and if we're being honest probably not really anyone's preferred form for
  consumption either. (That file is actually generated, by the slightly
  less offensive 11kB
  because I really didn't want to insert the CC licenses by hand; but
  Policy and ftp-master practice require the generated file to be part
  of the source upload. See also <https://bugs.debian.org/768292>.)


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