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Re: AT&T source code agreement

I'll only address points that I think I can safely argue myself without
having to ask a lawyer...

On Wed, Mar 22, 2000 at 01:35:06PM -0500, Stephen C. North wrote:
> 2) The clause about feeding patches back to AT&T is interesting.  Why does
> it
> conflict with this statement in the Debian social contract:
>     "We will feed back bug-fixes, improvements, user requests, etc. to the
> "upstream"
>     authors of software included in our system"
> Is the point that you think this is a good idea, but don't want to be held
> to it?

It would be contrary to the DFSG to force our users to do the same; Debian
maintainers try to do so, but are not _required_ to do so. A user needs to
be able to modify the software, period, without having to take any other
action to enable them to perform that action legally.

Lots of things end up in non-free for similar reasons - we could comply
with the license agreements, but they restrict people's actions once they
get the software from us.

> A non-binding remark on staying abreast of current patent law is elegant;
> I'll see if it's
> possible to adopt this as an alternative.

This definitely causes less headache. Laws are binding, period, to those to
whom they apply - putting them in the license is redundant and can be a
potential problem, though I don't know if the ones in the AT&T license are
problematic or not.

Elie Rosenblum                 That is not dead which can eternal lie,
http://www.cosanostra.net   And with strange aeons even death may die.
Admin / Mercenary / System Programmer             - _The Necronomicon_

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