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Re: REVISED PROPOSAL regarding DFSG 3 and 4, licenses, and modifiable text

On Sun, Dec 09, 2001 at 10:44:21PM -0500, Branden Robinson wrote:
> > or are we trying to make emacs non-free,
> No, but it is also not my intent to author some decree that specific
> works shall never be regarded as non-free.  

No one's talking about how the DFSG might change later, it's how it might
change now that's being discussed.

Are you trying to make emacs20 non-free?

Do you think emacs20 should be considered non-free?

If we're trying for minimal changes, then deciding emacs20 as packaged
right now is non-free is out of scope (since the minimal changes would be
to let FDL stuff be considered free, and not make anything we currently
consider DFSG-free non-free).

> The DFSG should be blind as
> to the identity of the works whose licenses it measures.

Weren't you just exhorting the benefits of relating the proposal to existing
packages a minute ago?

> I should note that truly minimalist changes to answer the "GPL itself is
> non-free!" FAQ will increase, not decrease, the likelihood that Emacs
> (its manual, anyway) will be regarded as non-free.

Only if you consider that no change at all (the minimum change) would
declare emacs20 non-free; and since we don't consider emacs20 non-free
that's not correct.

> So lose the false alternative and work towards a goal that accomplishes
> the former without necessitating or generating a flamewar about the
> latter. 

Again: "A small amount of unmodifiable, non-technical, text will not
make an otherwise DFSG-free package non-free."

If you don't like the hint on "small" I gave last time, please give a
better run down of the packages this applies to so that we can come up
with one. Evidently you have better examples to work with than than the
one you originally cited, so please tell us about them.

> Granting exceptions to DFSG 3 and 4 for copyright notices and
> license texts seems uncontroversial.  The problem is that we need more
> exceptions than that if some of the present contents of main are not to
> come under review.


Adding exceptions for some things encourages people to think we
should review main for any other subtle exceptions. These things are
*guidelines*, they're not pedantically correct rules: adding some explicit
exceptions *weakens* their utility, it doesn't improve it.

If the present contents of main comes under review because of these
changes, then they're *bad* changes to make, in that they have a wider
effect than they should (which is, again, aiui, just to clarify our
stance on licenses, and allow FDL-licensed stuff to enter main in the
usual case).


Anthony Towns <aj@humbug.org.au> <http://azure.humbug.org.au/~aj/>
I don't speak for anyone save myself. GPG signed mail preferred.

 "Security here. Yes, maam. Yes. Groucho glasses. Yes, we're on it.
   C'mon, guys. Somebody gave an aardvark a nose-cut: somebody who
    can't deal with deconstructionist humor. Code Blue."
		-- Mike Hoye,
		      see http://azure.humbug.org.au/~aj/armadillos.txt

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