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Re: Latex Project Public License

On Feb 19, Alexei Kaminski wrote:
> I am the current maintainer for the package revtex, which is a collection of 
> LaTeX style files to be used in manuscripts submitted for publication in the 
> journals published by the American Physical Society. The license of the 
> upstream version 3.1, which makes the current revtex package, prohibits 
> taking money for the distribution or use of the files except for a nominal 
> charge for copying, etc. It makes the upstream version 3.1 inelegible for 
> debian/main.
> Recently, version 4 of the upstream product has been released, under the 
> Latex Project Public License (http://www.latex-project.org/lppl.html). 
> My question for debian-legal is: Does the Latex Project Public License satisfy
> the Debian Free Software Guidelines?
> My understanding is that in general it does not, due to the clause
> "You may not modify in any way a file of The Program that bears a legal 
> notice forbidding modification of that file," but revtex's upstream version 4 
> can still be considered as free since none of its files bears such a notice.

I believe that interpretation is correct; in the same vein, other
licenses (the OPL, for example) have optional clauses that, when not
invoked, pass the DFSG.

Chris Lawrence <cnlawren@phy.olemiss.edu> - http://www.lordsutch.com/chris/

Computer Systems Manager, Physics and Astronomy, Univ. of Mississippi
125B Lewis Hall - 662-915-5765

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