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Re: license requirements for a book to be in free section

Scripsit Barak Pearlmutter <bap@cs.unm.edu>

> One thing we could do is this:

>  - Get O'Rielly to send us, in writing, signed, a simple unambiguous
>    statement that assures us that their conditions for distribution of
>    this document conforms with the DFSG, and that any interpretation
>    of their written license terms, no matter how faithful to the text
>    they might seem, which disagrees with this, are incorrect.

Won't work. The DFSG themselves are far from unambiguous (they were
never meant to live up to the standard of unambigous clairty needed
for legally binding documents, and they don't), so no statement that
derives its meaning from an inclusion-by-reference of the DFSG will
necessarily be hopelessly ambiguous.

If your statement is modified to read "the DFSG as O'Reilly
understands them", we've gained nothing.

If it is instead modified to read "the DFSG as the (at any given time)
current consensus on debain-legal understands them", no sane business
executive is going to sign it.

If it instead reads "the DFSG as whatever court that has to make a
decision understands them", the court is probably going to trash the
DFSG as the unintelligibly vague piece of gibberish they are and
instead rule that O'Reilly's perfectly reasonable interest in
protecting their intellectual property should prevail. The "no sane BX
will sign this" goes here too, by the way.

Henning Makholm           "Larry wants to replicate all the time ... ah, no,
                   all I meant was that he likes to have a bang everywhere."

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