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Re: Documentation licenses (GFDL discussion on debian-legal)

Please don't CC me on list mail.

On Wed, 2002-12-04 at 21:01, David Turner wrote:
> On Wed, 2002-12-04 at 21:49, Joe Wreschnig wrote:
> > Licensing aside, why would (and should) Debian distribute famous novels?
> > An installer for famous novels (c.f. gutenbook), sure, but why the
> > novels themselves?
> Because people might want them.  Because apt-get install
> alice-in-wonderland would be cool.  Better: why not?  

It clogs up the archive with a million packages. Can you imagine how
much crappy fanfiction is going to end up there? ;) I use Debian to get
software and media associated with software. I don't expect it to
deliver my recreational reading material, favorite music, or porn

Seriously, the way to solve this issue is to do what
int-fiction-installer does - provide an installer that's free software,
and downloads the programs from a 3rd party repository as requested.
Several such programs already exist for Project Gutenberg.

I'm getting offtopic though. The "why not" at hand now is because
certain texts (I don't think Alice is among them) don't provide users
with the basic freedoms that Debian guarantees them. As it stands,
Debian can do one of two things.

- Apply the DFSG to documentation. This is the current practice, and I
think it works extremely well (it would work better if the GNU project
stopped distributing non-free documentation).

- Write a DFDG and apply it to documentation. This requires a GR,
probably modifying the social contract. This is the *only* way to get
documentation that fails the DFSG into Debian. If you want to try it go
ahead, but search through the archives for the numerous (IMO unsolvable)
problems that will arise trying to create such guidelines.

> > > - the licenses under /usr/share/common-licenses
> > 
> > Licensing texts are immutable because they are a legal contract.
> The GPL isn't a contract.  It's a license.  

Erm, yeah. Sorry about that, I actually do know the difference. You're
right. On the other hand, the point remains. Licenses shouldn't be
- Joe Wreschnig <piman@debian.org>    -    http://www.sacredchao.net
  "What I did was justified because I had a policy of my own... It's
   okay to be different, to not conform to society."
                                   -- Chen Kenichi, Iron Chef Chinese

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