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Re: A WDL.

On Fri, Sep 12, 2003 at 02:05:19PM -0500, Branden Robinson wrote:
> On Thu, Sep 11, 2003 at 12:26:07PM +0200, Wouter Verhelst wrote:
> > As I tried to point out in the recent discussions about the GFDL (not
> > sure whether that point has come through, but anyway), although the GFDL
> > is crafted in a way which makes it not DFSG-free, IMHO there is nothing
> > wrong with the spirit, the intention, of the GFDL.
> Well, I personally have had a lot of trouble eliciting information about
> what precisely the GNU FDL's intent *is*, at least when it comes to
> particular properties that distinguish it from other licenses.

I think that in the course of crafting an alternative license, we should
be able to come up with that.

> I think a more fruitful approach for developing a documentation license
> might be to enumerate our intentions before constructing the license.

I have considered that alternative too, but dismissed it because I think
it's easer to modify an existing text than it is to agree what you want
to modify, followed by the actual modification.

> > As such, I've taken the GFDL, and modified it in a way that retains the
> > spirit of the GFDL, but results in a license which is, IMO, DFSG-free.
> > I'm assuming the text of the GFDL is copyrighted in the same way as the
> > GPL is, so I renamed it to the "WDL", for "Wouter's Documentation
> > License" -- that's just until I find a more suitable name for it.
> I do not have the strength of will to perform an analysis at this point,
> and commenting on parts that happen to be similar or identical to the
> GNU FDL would, in my opinion, run afoul of the self-censorship on the
> subject that Bruce Perens has asked me to practice.[1]

Sure. No problem.

> I will make a couple of meta-observations, however:
> > Wouter's Documentation License
> > 
> > Version 1.0-DRAFT
> > Copyright (C) 2003, Wouter Verhelst
> Since you frankly admit that this document is derived from the GNU FDL,
> surely they retain their copyright in it?

Obviously. I started writing it with the intention of creating something
that would be, in letter, completely different, but ended up copying
large blocks of text for which I didn't see a need to change. I forgot
to change that statement. Fixed now, thanks.

> If so, then it might be a good idea to ask the FSF for permission to
> make a derived license.

Uh, right. Will do.

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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