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Re: Knuth statement on renaming cm files and Licence violation.

On Wed, 2002-09-04 at 18:40, Russ Allbery wrote:
> Thomas Bushnell, BSG <tb@becket.net> writes:
> > Russ Allbery <rra@stanford.edu> writes:
> >> Thomas Bushnell, BSG <tb@becket.net> writes:
> >>> And note that it begins with "I decided to put these fonts into the
> >>> public domain; all I have asked is that ..."
> >>> Note that if this means *anything* at all, the request is a mere
> >>> request and not legally binding.
> >> Surely you're not arguing that makes any difference.  Surely you're not
> >> claiming that Debian should ignore a very reasonable request by Donald
> >> Knuth because you think you've found a legal loophole in his statement.
> >> Surely you're just saying this to make an obscure pedantic point, not
> >> to indicate that it should have anything whatsoever to do with what
> >> Debian does.
> > I fear that you have lost track of the context of the (rather complex)
> > discussion.
> Perhaps in part, but your line of reasoning above makes me extremely
> uncomfortable.  When the author of a package has clearly stated their
> expectations and requirements for redistribution, it seems like that
> should be treated as the license, even if they didn't cross the
> appropriate legal "t".  To do anything else seems... well, extremely
> rude.  Even if Debian is not violating the intended license directly, to
> base a stance on the viewpoint that the license is legally uninforcable
> and therefore irrelevant seems rather disconcerting.

To repeat, there's a lot of context you're missing.

Debian distributes TeX in main.  When we distribute something in main,
we are saying to our users, "You may do these things with TeX and not
worry about violating the law."  Is it wrong to ask ourselves if this
statement is accurate?

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