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

Re: Revised LaTeX Project Public License (LPPL)

Scripsit Brian T. Sniffen
> Henning Makholm <henning@makholm.net> writes:
> > Scripsit Walter Landry <wlandry@ucsd.edu>

> >> That's good, but only if you're able to modify the Base Format.  It is
> >> easy to imagine scenarios where you are able to modify individual
> >> files, but not the validation mechanism.

> > Could you please imagine one?

> Sure: I take the Base Format and make a functional change to it,
> removing the option to turn off validation.  Now I distribute this
> under your draft LPPL.

But does that possibility make the original software non-free? Your
argument seems to be that it is possible to make a derived version
that is not free - but that possiblity exists for, say, the BSD
license as well.

> The freeness of a license should be as divorced as possible from
> accidents of implementation.

Remember that our actual business on debian-legal is not to decide
whether *licenses* are free, but whether actual pieces of *software*
are free. As I said, I agree that it is possible to apply the LPPL
draft in such a way that it results in non-freedom. However, I also
believe that it is possible to apply it in a free way. The situation
is not basically that much different from that of the GFDL.

You and I can easily agree that it would be better, all other things
being equal, to have licenses that could only be applied in ways that
make the software they apply to free. However, it seems to be
prohibitively complicated to word such a license such that it stays
within the intersection of "what the LaTeX people can live with" and
"what is DFSG-free (at least according to my and Jeff's gut

Henning Makholm                "He who joyfully eats soup has already earned
                            my contempt. He has been given teeth by mistake,
                          since for him the intestines would fully suffice."

Reply to: