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Re: The debate on Invariant sections (long)

Richard Stallman wrote:
Many examples have been given for why this is *false*, and they're pretty much all tied to the *non-removability* rather than the non-modifiability. Should we repeat them again?

I've looked at these reasons, and they did not convince me the first
time; repeating them won't convince me now.  Recently I have started
sending mail discussing the issue, explaining why this is too strict a
That's good. I think one of the things which most disturbed people was that these complaints have been brought up for over a year, and the apparent response from the FSF for most of that time was to ignore them, rather than to respond to them or rebut them.

This is the point on which Debian has consensus and cannot compromise.
You seem to be anticipating a decision which has not yet been made.  I
doubt I can convince you, but I hope I will convince other Debian
developers to reject this proposal

The decision really has been made, after well over a year of debate on debian-legal. (And incidentally, it's not a proposal, it's an evaluation of freeness.) If you are actually right, however, I am sure that many people will be convinced, and that it can be reversed.

I must inform you that over the course of the last year, many Debian developers who originally saw no problems with the GNU FDL have been convinced otherwise by the persuasive arguments given by Branden Robinson and others. Perhaps (although I doubt it) this is simply due to having no counter-arguments coming from the FSF, in which case your reasoned explanations and responses should help convince everyone.

I'm a big believer in the power of reasoned argument. If the GNU FDL really is free in the same sense as the GPL, you will be able to convince me that the GNU FDL, properly applied, is always a free license. It looks to me now as if it isn't. (Even if it is, it has the infuriating practical problem of GPL-incompatibility in both directions, but that's a secondary issue.)

Thanks for coming to the discussion.

--Nathanael Nerode

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