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Re: A possible GFDL compromise: a proposal

Matthew Palmer <mpalmer@debian.org> a tapoté :

> On Mon, Sep 08, 2003 at 10:24:00PM +0200, Mathieu Roy wrote:
> > As Debian provides links, for apt-get, to non-free software, which are
> > distributed by debian but 'not considered as part of debian', would it
> > be acceptable for debian to provides links, for apt-get, to 'non-DFSG
> > documentation', which would be distributed by GNU and 'not considered as
> > part of Debian'? 
> That would be fine - until we pass the GR to get rid of non-free once and
> for all (partially at RMS' behest, I will add).  I don't see why, if we're
> cleaning up our act in distributing items non-compliant with our social
> contract, we'd keep one part and throw out another.

Sure. But I'm not sure the deletion of non-free for Debian servers
will happen soon. So my proposal can be a temporary solution, like
non-free inclusion.

Another one would be from GNU maintainers to release two versions of
their manuals: 
        - the complete GFDLed one
        - a GPLed one where the invariant section are removed
But I see many reasons against this solution. If this kind of solution
can be accepted, it will probably take some time.

Another one would be from Debian to make a difference between non-free
software and non-DFSG compliant documentation. It means that debian
would be providing in main manuals DFSG compliant and in another place
documentation less-free according to the DFSG but still mostly free.
(if it's possible to argue that the GNU FDL is not DFSG-compliant,
it's a bit hard to claims it's proprietary documentation).

There's no way out if the two sides stands strictly on their
position. And the affected ones will be users at first (lacking good
documentation because of an invariant section that is maybe not
something they consider as non-free), the debian developers (forced to
write from scratch new documentation), the GNU developers (losting
an user base for their documentation).

> > It would allow users (something that Debian cares about) that do
> > not want 'non-free software' at all but accept 'free-documentation
> > as defined by the GNU project' to be able to use apt-get easily,
> > easier than if 'free-documentation as defined by the GNU project'
> > was mixed with 'non-free software'.
> The GNU project is free to set up it's own apt-get repository to distribute
> items which it feels should be in the Debian archive but which we can't
> distribute.  You'll have to work out some way to publicise it to users,
> since, as you have to understand, we can't have any part in recommending
> non-free software to our users[1].

I agree with your first phrase. Unfortunately I cannot agree with the
last one: Debian already recommends non-free software to users by
provide apt-get links to these softwares, even if in theory non-free
is not part of Debian.

And it leads me to another question for the list: when thinking about
the GFDL, the answer from the list is 'the GFDL is not
DFSG-compliant', but should we consider that GFDLed documentation is
equal to non-free software, by disregarding the license itself which
provide freedoms that no non-free software provides? It's a bit
strange to study line by line a license text to find reasons of
DFSG-non compliance and suddenly, because of one potential problem
(you're not forced to use invariant options!), concluding that this
license is completely non-free, isn't it?

Mathieu Roy
  Not a native english speaker: 

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