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Re: Bug#181493: SUN RPC code is DFSG-free

On Sat, Sep 06, 2003 at 05:49:36PM -0500, Manoj Srivastava wrote:
> On Sun, 7 Sep 2003 00:19:32 +0200, Wouter Verhelst <wouter@grep.be> said: 
> > On Sat, Sep 06, 2003 at 10:39:33PM +0100, Andrew Suffield wrote:
> >> On Sat, Sep 06, 2003 at 11:10:19PM +0200, Wouter Verhelst wrote:
> >> > Please, guys. He isn't saying he has final say in whether or not
> >> > the Sun RPC code is DFSG-free; he's just saying it shouldn't hold
> >> > up the release.
> >>
> >> When did we decide that release dates were more important than the
> >> DFSG?
> > We didn't. At least not officially. But to 'some' of us, it does
> > matter.
> >> /sarcastic>
> > In any case, the solution is easy (as I said in my mail, in the part
> > you conveniently snipped away): stop the bickering, get your hands
> > out of their sleeves, and write that RPC code. Free of bugs, and
> > standards-compliant, mind you.
> 	In other words, it is OK to ship non-free code in main, as
>  long as there is no free implementation.

No, that's not what I'm saying. I'm not saying whether or not this is
free; and I'm certainly not saying it's OK to ship non-free code in

What I *am* saying is that we *are* already shipping this way, and that
not removing the code would not intensify the problem. However,
postponing the release any further would certainly intensify the other
problem, namely, that we still don't have another release this long
after the release of woody.

Since our users and the DFSG are equally important, one should not
try to solve one of those problems *at the cost* of the other, and
*certainly* not if one is not willing to provide a solution.

>  If you want Dewbian to stop
>  shjipping non-free code, then you better write the free
>  implementation -- not just any free implementation, mind you -- Free
>  of bugs, and standards-compliant, too.

That, also, is not what I'm saying. Well, almost.

In this particular case, with code being so important to a major part of
our users, given that our users and the DFSG are, per the Social
Contract, equally important, and given that the piece of code in dispute
*is* already in stable, I'm saying we should not hold up the release to
write a replacement. However, if *you* are willing to write a
replacement, and are willing to hold up the release for that, I will
support you, but then you should make sure the code is at least as good
as the RPC code which *is* in glibc right now. Not doing so would be a
disservice to our users, and not worth the effort.

It would probably hold up the release for yet another year or two, but
who cares about such things anyway?

> 	Do you really think this is the stance of the project?

Not the way you put it, no.

> > If you're not willing to do that, then I suggest you shut the fuck
> > up.
> 	Right, how dare you imply that we care about shipping only
>  free code in main.

Again, that's not what I'm saying. For one thing, I'm not convinced the
code is non-free, but perhaps that's just me; I won't make any argument
about that. However, in this particular case, at this moment in time,
pulling the code out would, again, be a disservice to our users.

>  We are all about expedience, not about freedom.

Actually, we are about both (if I understand 'expedience' correct from
the context; don't have a dictionary nearby)

> >  We can't ship without RPC in glibc (that would be a severe
> > disservice to our users, as it would break NFS, parts of Gnome (FAM,
> > for instance, on which parts of Gnome depend, uses RPC), and most
> > likely some other major parts of our distribution as well; and per
> > the Social Contract, our users and the DFSG are equally important),
> > and the code is (at least) not GPL-incompatible (you should read the
> > first paragraph after section 2c of the GPL if you disagree).
> 	Indeed. Some non free code is too important not to ship.

That's not what I'm saying. Some code of which the freeness is being
challenged, is already being shipped.

>  Not
>  shipping such non free code would be a major disservice to our users,

Actually, pulling that code out would be a major disservice to our
users. It's already in there. Our users expect it to be there, or at
least, they expect a functionally equivalent part of code there.

>  and would lose Debian important market share, and we can't possibly
>  let scruples stand in the way of market share, can we?

I couldn't care less about market share. I do care about the social
contract, though, which says 'Our priorities are our users and free

Wouter Verhelst
Debian GNU/Linux -- http://www.debian.org
Nederlandstalige Linux-documentatie -- http://nl.linux.org
"Stop breathing down my neck." "My breathing is merely a simulation."
"So is my neck, stop it anyway!"
  -- Voyager's EMH versus the Prometheus' EMH, stardate 51462.

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