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Re: Removal of non-free

On Sat, May 24, 2003 at 10:52:08AM -0000, MJ Ray wrote:
> Joel Baker <fenton@debian.org> wrote:
> > [...] *this* is something that belongs in non-free as
> > a useful service.
> People could provide an RFC apt source as a useful service.

People could also provide everything else Debian does. That doesn't mean
it's any less a useful service, or less in the interests of Free Software
(after all, open standards are sort of crucial to interoperation...)

> [...policy vs users?...]
> > Isn't that more or less exactly what some folks have been accusing the FSF
> > of recently?
> I don't think so.

Then I guess we disagree.

> > Things shouldn't stay in non-free, no. [...]
> Would you support a "maximum length of stay" proposal for non-free?

I would support a maximum length before re-evaluating whether something was
worth keeping there. I think a lot of things persist well past the point
where it's reasonably justified; I think (though I wish it weren't true)
that some things like old RFCs are unlikely to be republished under a Free
license anytime soon (and some might never be, since the authors are dead;
Jon Postel, for example, is the author of many early RFCs).

However, I think that set is also small, relatively static, and that the
vast majority of non-free can and should be re-evaluated and re-justified
periodically (periodicity up for discussion).
Joel Baker <fenton@debian.org>

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