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Re: A possible GFDL compromise: a proposal


On Mon, Sep 15, 2003 at 07:08:25PM -0400, Richard Stallman wrote:
> To the readers of this message: if you are a Debian developer and you
> do, or perhaps might, support including manuals covered by the GFDL
> (without expecting it to change) in Debian, please write to me and
> tell me.  (I am not subscribed to debian-legal and could not handle
> the volume of mail.)  But before you send it, please see if I have
> sent a further message to debian-legal saying "enough!"

A week or so ago I would have said I was still making up my mind.  Now I
not supporting the GFDL in Debian, but I never consider any position I
take fixed.  A good argument will force me to reconsider.

But I would also hope that if we can convince you that there are problems
with the current form of the GFDL then you will concider changing it.

To that end I would like you thoughts on the following:

A Mr. Foo Bar makes a technical change to the GNU C Compiler that is
so powerful that it both reduces the compile size and execution time of
any source compiled agaisnt it.  In essence it is a must have patch
(like including the GNU C Compiler is a must for any Linux distro).

As part of the change Mr. Bar updates the GCC documentation to describe
the changes he has made, and how they work.  It containts detailed
mathematicly research on how the improvements were made, details which
are not evident in the source and therefore reverse engineering of the
documentation from just the source is not possible.  Included in his
update to the documentation is an Invariant Section in which he advocates
the "Open Source" model as given better freedom to the community than the
FSF model.  A position I am sure you disagree with even though you
support his freedom to make such a claim.

Please tackle this from the position of a distributor of GCC trying to
provide the best free software available.

As I understand it the Front Cover Text (being invariant) must be "A
GNU Manual".  Any distrobutor of this derived work must therefore present
it like any other "offical" GNU document.  How do you feel about an
imporant technical document being used to spread propaganda to which 
you and the FSF do not subscribe?

Thanks for your time
Finagle's Seventh Law:
	The perversity of the universe tends toward a maximum.

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