Re: Yearless copyrights: what do people think?
On February 22, 2023 9:38:48 PM UTC, Sam Hartman <email@example.com> wrote:
>>>>>> "Peter" == Peter Pentchev <firstname.lastname@example.org> writes:
> Peter> 3. Now, what about the `Files: debian/*` section of the
> Peter> debian/copyright file? The common wisdom seems to be that, if
> Peter> only to make it easier to submit patches to the upstream
> Peter> project, the debian/* files ought to be licensed under the
> Peter> same terms as the upstream source. Now I know that licensing
> Peter> and copyright are different things :) So would the Debian
> Peter> Project consider it okay for a Debian package to have a
> Peter> `Files: debian/*` section in its copyright file that does not
> Peter> mention any years? This question is both from a DFSG point of
> Peter> view and from a "what would be best for our users" one. And
> Peter> does the answer depend on whether the upstream project's
> Peter> copyright notices include years or not? (as in, should we
> Peter> follow upstream's lead in that, too)
> Peter> Note that none of that comes from any "it's so difficult"
> Peter> positions; I am actually one of the people who would include
> Peter> file-by-file stanzas in the debian/copyright files for
> Peter> upstream files with different copyright years :)
>I think it is acceptable, but would urge you to include the years
>because it is better for our users.
>I think two things apply.
>1) it helps our users know when something goes out of copyright.
>2) As Russ points out, while your copyright is valid in the US even
>without notice, certain damage provisions only apply if you have valid
>notice including years.
>Neither of these are huge deals.
>I'd say years should be recommended but not required.
>I don't think parity with upstream matters.
>I don't think you would have any trouble submitting patches if the only
>difference is one notice included years and one did not.
I would add, that it's absolutely a requirement for license compliance in some cases. For those cases, please continue to include it. I don't think Debian should have a view that failing to comply with a license is okay if we think we can get away with it.