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Re: LaTeX Public Project License, Version 1.3 (DRAFT)

"C.M. Connelly" <cmc@debian.org> wrote:
> Frank Mittelbach asks that reviews be done of the draft of version
> 1.3 of the LaTeX Public Project License rather than of the current
> version (1.2).

After reading this new license, I really get the feeling that the
Latex people are trying very hard to prevent any changes to Latex,
without actually making it non-free.  This license seems to try to
obey the letter of the DFSG without concurring with the spirit.  I
think that this is the source of the "vague rumors that ``Debian
people don't like the LPPL''".

In particular, in being so particular about modified files, it relies
on DFSG #4: Integrity of The Author's Source Code.  Debian is not so
happy with people using that clause (some might call it a loophole),
but they allow it.

In any case, the only part where I could find a specific violation of
the DFSG is in the additional conditions.

> Additional Conditions on LaTeX Software Files
> ---------------------------------------------
> If a file of The Program is intended to be used with LaTeX (that is,
> if it is a LaTeX software file), then the following additional
> conditions, which supplement and/or supersede the conditions
> above, apply to the file according to its filename extension:
>   - You may not modify any file with filename extension `.ins' since
>     these are installation files containing the legal notices that are
>     placed in the files they generate.

This part is probably not ok.  It must be possible to delete or rename
any file.  For example, someone might want to change how installation
works, and that could easily involve moving, consolidating, and/or
modifying installation files.

Walter Landry

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