Free Digital Artwork Guidelines
Hi, debian legal list!
In these days, there was a discussion about free fonts on this
list, so I guess this fits here:
I would like to start a free music project, and therefore maybe
adopt the DFSG as a point to start from. The only problem I see
is that in some cases, the enforcement of source code
redistribution can be harassing.
Please tell me what you think about it.
- - - - -
| The Debian Free Software Guidelines (DFSG)
concerning free digital artwork, maybe for the purpose of creating
"Free Digital Artwork Guidelines"
| 1. Free Redistribution
| The license of a Debian component may not restrict any party
| from selling or giving away the software as a component of an
| aggregate software distribution containing programs from several
| different sources. The license may not require a royalty or
| other fee for such sale.
This is obviously the most important point.
| 2. Source Code
| The program must include source code, and must allow
| distribution in source code as well as compiled form.
With audio recordings and pixel graphics, the problem is that the
source code, the uncompressed multi track recording or multi
layer image is several times larger than the compiled and
compressed form. Imagine, anyone who shares MP3 files would be
required also to provide two data CDs source code for each MP3.
Today, this would be unenforcable.
However, providing the source code of artwork is always a nice
The size problem mentioned above does not apply to any kind of
art (e.g. not to fonts or music scores), so in these cases,
source code must be provided.
| 3. Derived Works
| The license must allow modifications and derived works, and must
| allow them to be distributed under the same terms as the license
| of the original software.
| 4. Integrity of The Author's Source Code
| The license may restrict source-code from being distributed in
| modified form _only_ if the license allows the distribution of
| "patch files" with the source code for the purpose of modifying
| the program at build time. The license must explicitly permit
| distribution of software built from modified source code. The
| license may require derived works to carry a different name or
| version number from the original software. (This is a
| compromise. The Debian group encourages all authors not to
| restrict any files, source or binary, from being modified.)
Naming rules are ugly, because they create license incompatiblity.
A better way to achieve integrity, as shown in the GFDL, is to
add a non free, but easily removable endorsement, that a version
is "official" or authorized by the author. The endorsement must
be removed in changed versions.
| 5. No Discrimination Against Persons or Groups
| The license must not discriminate against any person or group of
| 6. No Discrimination Against Fields of Endeavor
| The license must not restrict anyone from making use of the
| program in a specific field of endeavor. For example, it may not
| restrict the program from being used in a business, or from
| being used for genetic research.
Violations(3) to these points(2) can easily occur with politically
motivated stuff(1). To avoid that(->3), the author should take the
"official"-label technique into concideration.
| 7. Distribution of License
| The rights attached to the program must apply to all to whom the
| program is redistributed without the need for execution of an
| additional license by those parties.
| 8. License Must Not Be Specific to Debian
| The rights attached to the program must not depend on the
| program's being part of a Debian system. If the program is
| extracted from Debian and used or distributed without Debian but
| otherwise within the terms of the program's license, all parties
| to whom the program is redistributed should have the same rights
| as those that are granted in conjunction with the Debian system.
(I think this point is ambigous, because of point 1, 5, 6 and 7.)
| 9. License Must Not Contaminate Other Software
| The license must not place restrictions on other software that
| is distributed along with the licensed software. For example,
| the license must not insist that all other programs distributed
| on the same medium must be free software.
This can be annoying for the user, because he has to read through
any file. To have free and non free stuff on the same media, can be a
technical neccessety, but why should a free license not demand that
there is no non free data in the same directory, file or audio
| 10. Example Licenses
| The "GPL", "BSD", and "Artistic" licenses are examples of
| licenses that we consider "free".
With the source code size problem mentioned above, there maybe is no
acceptable free art license, yet.