[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: Bug#207932: Consequences of moving Emacs Manuals to non-free

Jérôme Marant wrote:
Quoting "Davide G. M. Salvetti" <salve-evlas@debian.org>:

I do not share your statement about newbies not using Emacs.  However,
based on your above considerations, what exactly would be the problem
for newbies and/or experienced users with emacs21 and emacs-snapshot
being moved into contrib?

Because Emacs is technically able to work without its info manual,
so there is no reason for a strong dependency on its documentation.

Maybe it is time to look what the Policy Manual says about dependencies:

          This declares a strong, but not absolute, dependency.

          The `Recommends' field should list packages that would be found
          together with this one in all but unusual installations.

          This is used to declare that one package may be more useful with
          one or more others.  Using this field tells the packaging system
          and the user that the listed packages are related to this one and
          can perhaps enhance its usefulness, but that installing this one
          without them is perfectly reasonable.

It is certainly true that Emacs is "technically able to work without its
info manual", but "technically able" and "perfectly reasonable" are quite
different things.

Imagine that the manual were already in separate package, but considered
free by Debian.  Would you `recommend' to install it together with Emacs?
Probably, since Emacs without its info manual would then qualify as an
"unusual installation".

Of course, having the manual in non-free changes the situation; the
die-hard freedom advocate who says: "I will never install anything from the
non-free section, and nobody should do that!" may be willing to use a
hampered Emacs and not find that unusual.  But is it really perfectly

You (and Rob, of course) decide.  In any case, I find Miles' statement

In practice I guess it's just going to mean that most people end up
putting non-free in their sources.list, weakening the effect of having a
separation between "free" and "non-free" in the first place, and more
users end up confused because lack of hard dependencies will mean the
doc packages don't get installed.

That hits the nail on the head.  The whole effect of these anti-GFDL
efforts is to actually undermine Debian's position as a 100% free OS.

Reply to: