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Re: ldp-es_20002103-7_i386.changes REJECTED

On Tue, Oct 29, 2002 at 12:36:28PM +0100, Javier Fernández-Sanguino Peña wrote:
> 	May I remark the phrase "The copyright in such work is
> independent of (...)  any copyright protection in the preexisting
> material."

"Independent of" doesn't mean "supersedes".  It means "coexists with".

> "Article 2
> (3) Translations, adaptations, arrangements of music and other alterations
> of a literary or artistic work shall be protected as original works without
> prejudice to the copyright in the original work."
> This means that they have their own copyright but do not change the
> original work's copyright.

Exactly.  The original copyright still applies.

> Of course (article 8 of the WIPO treaty) the original authors have a
> right to make and authorise translations.

So the two copyrights exist together on the translated work.

> I cannot, of course, demostrate that the translations were authorised. Nor
> is there a document (in all of them) stating that fact for all documents.
> And in the case there is, it's not digitally signed so it's value is moot.

We don't need a digital signature, just reasonable grounds for a
good-faith belief.

An utter absence of evidence for authorization is not, in general,
reasonable grounds for a good-faith belief.

> If we are going to be nitpicky about this, take into account that *for each
> translation* in Debian (including manpages, GNOME/KDE help documentation or
> whatever) we *need* a document stating that a given translation is
> authorised *even* if the document is DFSG-free (GPLed or whatever) since
> the copyright *cannot* remove the "right of translation" from any given
> author.

Any DFSG-free license will grant license to produce translations, since
translation is a form of modification.

> My question is ¿are we doing that for each and every document translated in
> Debian?

Perhaps, perhaps not.  But we should be.

Sometimes people find non-DFSG-free documentation in Debian, they file
bugs, and the package maintainer tells them to "stop wasting their

> ¿Do we have unrefutable proof that the translation was authorised?

We don't need irrefutable proof.  We need reasonable grounds for a
good-faith belief that the translation was authorized.

A license explicitly authorizing everyone to make and distribute
modificaied versions of the document would be one way to establish those
reasonable grounds.

> Please don't ask for a package what you don't do for others. Either do it
> for all or don't.

I have not heard anyone proposing that ldp-es receive discriminatory
treatment.  If other translations of the ldp package, and/or the ldp
package itself, have licensing problems, then they require our

That ldp-es was previously allowed into main despite licensing problems
was probably an accidental oversight.  The archive administrators aren't
perfect, and years ago Debian wasn't as rigorous and careful about
licensing issues as it is today.  Lawsuits, both real and threatened,
against Free Software developers from large software companies and
speech-suppressing laws like the DMCA are largely responsible for the
increased level of scrutiny that licensing issues receive, not just in
Debian but in the Free Software community in general.

[1] http://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/bugreport.cgi?bug=92810&repeatmerged=yes

G. Branden Robinson                |    Somebody once asked me if I thought
Debian GNU/Linux                   |    sex was dirty.  I said, "It is if
branden@debian.org                 |    you're doing it right."
http://people.debian.org/~branden/ |    -- Woody Allen

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