[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: [Discussioni] OSD && DFSG convergence

On 27-Jan-03, 23:49 (CST), Russell Nelson <nelson@crynwr.com> wrote: 
> Undoubtedly you pointed to the
> DFSG or to case law, or else you made a new precedent.  But when you
> make a new precedent, you have to say exactly why, and justify it.
> Well... what is wrong with amending the DFSG so it incorporates the
> case law?  

For the same reason that US Federal law is not amended and made more
detailed every time a federal court makes a decision: because it would
shortly become (even more) unwieldy and unreadable. Previous court
decisions are published and are used every day to guide and influence
decisions to made. That the whole point of case law. Our case law is the
archive of debian-legal.

Now, sometimes the case law is unclear, and there are ongoing problems
related to the lack of clarity, and then laws are added, amended,
or repealed to make clear the will and intent of the lawmakers and
society[1]. So far, that hasn't happened with the DFSG. Maybe it
should. But I don't think that copying the OSD and saying "here's your
checklist" is going to work for us. A lot of what the DFSG is about is
"in the spirit of freedom" guidelines, because we want the freedom (you
would say "arbitrariness") to reject licenses that meet the letter of
the document but grossly violate the spirit of it. This whole discussion
comes down to the fact that you think this idea is a problem, and we[2]


[1] Or corporations and lobbyists, depending on your level of cynicism.

[2] "We", many of the Debian developers, but almost certainly not all.

Steve Greenland

    The irony is that Bill Gates claims to be making a stable operating
    system and Linus Torvalds claims to be trying to take over the
    world.       -- seen on the net

Reply to: