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Re: TeX Licenses & teTeX (Was: Re: forwarded message from Jeff Licquia)



On Mon, Aug 05, 2002 at 12:01:09PM +0200, Frank Mittelbach wrote:
> Even here on the list I noted that several people (which I presume to  to be
> debian-legal regulars) used "public domain" in different senses.

There is only one sense.

>  > Someday, Professor Knuth should be contacted and asked to remove the
>  > statement "I have put these systems into the public domain" because it
>  > is clearly not true.
> 
> I think that would be a very good idea.
> 
> well, the "individual files" Claire is referring to are files like cmr10.mf
> which states
> 
> % THIS IS THE OFFICIAL COMPUTER MODERN SOURCE FILE cmr10.mf BY D E KNUTH.
> % IT MUST NOT BE MODIFIED IN ANY WAY UNLESS THE FILE NAME IS CHANGED!
> 
> I too think that the TeX system doesn't violate the DSFG but it does come back
> to accepting that it is not a violation of DSFG to require that individual
> files of a work can only be distributed in changed form when their filenames
> are changed.

Nice try, but the contention is that Knuth's licensing elsewhere
supersedes the terms expressed within the file itself.  Have you never
heard of dual-licensing?

If you disagree, or if this understanding is not clear and unambiguous
-- if the copyright license files that Knuth wrote cannot clearly be
interpreted to apply to each and every file in TeX, METAFONT, and
Computer Modern, respectively -- then the Computer Modern fonts are NOT
DFSG-free.

Is it your assertion that Knuth's license doesn't in fact apply to all
of TeX, METAFONT, and Computer Modern?  If so, to which files does it
apply, and what method are you using to make this determination?  If I
write a program and license it to you under the LPPL, but the program's
source code happens to have the phrase "All Rights Reserved" in it, does
that render your license null and void?  Can I then take you to court
for infringing my copyright if you distribute my program under the terms
of the LPPL that I extended to you?

I repeat: the file renaming requirement is not DFSG-free, and you
wanting it to be so will not make it so.  DFSG 4 does not permit it.

So, please, cut it out with the sophistry.  A file renaming requirement
is not DFSG-free and never will be unless the DFSG is amended to make it
thus.

-- 
G. Branden Robinson                |
Debian GNU/Linux                   |    Yeah, that's what Jesus would do.
branden@debian.org                 |    Jesus would bomb Afghanistan. Yeah.
http://people.debian.org/~branden/ |

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