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Re: A possible GFDL compromise: a proposal

Andreas Barth <aba@not.so.argh.org> a tapoté :

> * Mathieu Roy (yeupou@gnu.org) [030911 10:20]:
> > Anthony DeRobertis <asd@suespammers.org> a tapoté :
> > > On Tuesday, Sep 9, 2003, at 12:29 US/Eastern, Mathieu Roy wrote:
> > > > So a country were you are free to kill a girl without any legal risk
> > > > is a country DFSG compliant?
> > > Please cite the specific paragraph of the DFSG that has _anything_ to
> > > do with killing people.
> > None. Because DFSG is about free _software_. Not about any freedom you
> > can imagine.
> Why do you than say something about killing people here? If we use the
> word "free" or "freedom" here, we usually speak about "free(dom) in
> the sense of the DFSG". (That's called context. In my referenced mail
> I even said explicit what I mean by the words "free" and "non-free",
> as I defined them, in the hope that even you won't missunderstand them.)

It's basically not possible to discuss two phrases without having
along with them parts of the previous mail. It clearly puts the 
phrases out of their context and make them senseless. 

DFSG is about Free Software, we all agree about that. Debian is only
about Free Software. Like GNU.

But GNU delivers philosophical/political/historical text along with
software, to explain his position about Software.

And apparently, there's no problem to include these philosophical
texts in Debian as long as these text would be treated as Software,
ruled by the Free Software definition originated from GNU.

But GNU does not consider these philosophical/political/historical
texts like Software and so do not think interesting to make them ruled
by the Free Software definition.

        - Maybe GNU should consider the option to provide its manuals
        in two versions, one without philosophical/political/historical
        texts, one as the current manuals.
        It would enable GNU/Linux distributions to choose between 
        just delivering Free Software or delivering
        philosophical/historical/political texts explaining Free
        Software along with Free Software to contribute to the GNU
        ideals fame.

        There is a risk for GNU: most of the distros may choose to
        only contribute to Free Software by delivering and making Free
        But there's an obvious advantage: having GNU manuals that
        already contain mainly technical documentation that must
        follow rules likely similar to Free Software rules according
        to GNU (almost part of the software) still distributed in most
        GNU/Linux distro. Which is a goal of GNU, to make a complete
        OS, which usually includes documentation related to the
        software shipped.
        It would be annoying to work against the GNU project goals in
        order to promote the GNU project goals.

        - Maybe Debian should think about the fact that Debian does
        not only deliver Software. Yes, in the real world a political
        text is not a Software -- at all.
        The fact that even philosophical/political/historical texts
        should be ruled by the Free Software rules to be ethically 
        acceptable for a number of Debian Developers, in my humble
        opinion, shows a desire which is completely out of the scope
        of both Debian and GNU: extending the Free Software rules to
        almost any kind of work (music, literature).

        When following this goal, not stated by Debian, it's pretty
        logical to consider Richard Stallman as corrupted (someone
        used this word several time on the list about Richard),
        despite the fact he did not changed his position on Free
        It particulary makes sense to feel betrayed when the author of
        the GNU Manifesto tells you that it's only about Software,
        while you want to extends it to everything.

This implicit desire, present in many Debian Developers heart
(I bring no proof with me, I would take some time but that something
I'm able to do -- It's my real work in real life), makes, I think,
impossible to discuss the subject. 
Because when one tells he does not think important to be able to
modify a political text, the other one answer that it must be the case
for Debian -- while he is probably think it should be the case under
whatever circumstances. If he was not the case, it's likely that he
would answer that these texts do not belongs to Debian.  

And it's, I think, why this GFDL is so annoying for many people always
referring to practical issues (anti-DMCA clause, transparent copies
clause) when it's not possible to discuss what disturb them most (the
invariant section). 

So the only solution that would help both GNU and Debian is the risky
solution I mentioned in "- Maybe GNU should ...".

I'm sure it would be lot easier to find way to fix the practical
issues without the burden of the disagreement about how
political/historical/philosophical texts should be ruled. Which is
something off-topic for both GNU and Debian, theoretically.


Mathieu Roy
  Not a native english speaker: 

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