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Re: PROPOSED: interpretive guidelines regarding DFSG 3, modifiability, and invariant text

On Tue, Nov 27, 2001 at 06:59:57PM +0000, M. Drew Streib wrote:
> On Tue, Nov 27, 2001 at 01:37:53PM -0500, Branden Robinson wrote:
> > Or is the FSF's intent to permit people to use the GNU FDL to
> > protect a 3-page reference card for some program, accompanied by a
> > 100-page novella which begins, "It was a dark and stormy night..."?,
> > and mark the latter Invariant so that no one can remove it?
> The intent, although IMO abusable, is to give the author a chance to make
> a statement, but continue to allow derivative works of all the actual
> relevant material. This is seen in a small degree in the GPL itself,
> which requires a copy of itself to be included in GPL'd works, and itself
> includes a preamble of text that we might term 'invariant' by FDL terms.

Yes, I'm aware of that.  Given that it is fairly small, and I happen to
be philosophically sympathetic to it, I don't have a big problem with
such material.

> Debian is in a great position of being able to attach a policy to the
> use of a license as well, however. FDL + some policy, whether that
> be Branden's suggestion, or a specific set of guidelines on what may
> or may not be in the invariant sections, seems a good way to go. We should
> be at least a little cognizant of the work that has gone into the FDL,
> from both a legal and philosophical standpoint.

I'm cognizant of the work that has gone into it.  I'm just not convinced
that it is as militantly defensive of the user's right to share
documentation as GNU GPL is for software.

G. Branden Robinson                |      "To be is to do"   -- Plato
Debian GNU/Linux                   |      "To do is to be"   -- Aristotle
branden@debian.org                 |      "Do be do be do"   -- Sinatra
http://people.debian.org/~branden/ |

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