Re: Revised LaTeX Project Public License (LPPL)
> > Something like this:
> > You must not cause files to misrepresent themselves as approved by
> > the official LaTeX maintenance group, or to misrepresent
> > themselves as perfectly compatible with such files (according to
> > compatibility criteria established by the official LaTeX
> > maintenance group).
> does this ban
> % This is not actually standard LaTeX, but we do this for ease of use:
> The LaTeX people [...] want a ban on something which
> programmatically interfaces in certain ways with Standard LaTeX.
> The DFSG will accept a ban on making false claims of authorship to
> humans, but not a ban on making such false claims to a program.
Well, under the "misrepresentation" clause above, this would in fact
be banned ... if its effect were to misrepresent the file as standard
LaTeX, and the comment were just a subterfuge. Whether this is the
case would depend on the context. But if something like that ended up
fooling people about whether it was standard, then it certainly would
be a misrepresentation!
On the other hand, my impression is that the LaTeX people would be
okay with such a file if (in context) there was care being taken to
not fool anyone (accidentally or deliberately) into thinking that what
was running was standard LaTeX, and the line of code were the just a
technical means to get something to run, eg with some modified
non-standard proprietary engine.
In other words, I suspect that what is really going on is a question
of INTENT, and subsequent effect. In this light, maybe the reason the
LaTeX people are having such problems crafting a clear simple license
is that at root they want to ban something based on intent, but (being
computer programmers) they're trying to implement this by writing more
and more complicated rules related to mechanism, and getting more and
more specific to their particular implementation.
I've CC'ed this to a LaTeX person - any comments from the LaTeX crowd?