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Re: A possible GFDL compromise: a proposal

Mathieu Roy, 2003-09-21 16:00:20 +0200 :

> Roland Mas <lolando@debian.org> a tapoté :
>> Mathieu Roy, 2003-09-21 12:30:21 +0200 :


>> > If the Debian project does not follow the rules that the Debian
>> > project wrote itself for the Debian OS, the Debian project is
>> > somehow inconsistent.
>>   The DFSG are for the Debian OS.  Not for the Debian project.
>> Please stop mixing these two notions, they are not identical.
> You failed to convince me. But if it helps you to see things that
> way, feel free to do it...

  In the same way as you failed to convince anyone that software and
documentation are different.  Please feel free to keep on making that
difference, though.  In the context of Debian, where the consensus is
that we do not make it, your arguments won't have much weight.

>> > Way more inconsistent than the GNU project that always follows
>> > its rules, for Software (Program) and Documentation.
>>   I'm not sure the GNU project is more consistent than the Debian
>> project is: its major goal is to provide freedom to the users, yet
>> it publishes non-free documentation
> This is a mistake.  It publishes free documentation according to
> GNU, non-free according to Debian.

  In the context of the discussion (inclusion of GFDL documentation in
Debian), I'd assume the Debian standards would be the ones applied.

> Please pay attention to the fact that different definitions exists
> of some concepts.

  I do.  I still maintain that there is no ambiguity in what is
allowed by the DFSG and what is not, and that what is not allowed goes
against the idea of free software even as advertised by the FSF.  Of
course, it does not go against the idea of free documentation as
advertised by the FSF, by some schizophrenia I'm not comfortable

>> > If the Debian project rules cannot be always followed by Debian
>> > Developers when they are working to achieve the Debian goal (the
>> > Debian OS) and are not doing any harm to this goal (the Debian
>> > OS), these rules are flawed.
>>   Do you realise that the Debian project has more than one goal
>> maybe?  The Debian OS may be the main one, but it is not the only
>> one.
> Which other goals?

  "Our priorities are our users and free software."  Our users, by the
crafting of a good operating system.  Free software, by a more general
attitude of working on free software, even the software not directly
related to Debian.  Also by a more general attitude of fighting
against proposed laws that would go against free software authors.

>>   It's not playing on words.  It's just how things are.  When you
>> buy a car from brand X, you don't get any rights on the trademark
>> X, or on the X logo.
> Yes, and I do not claim that the logo Renault on my car is not part
> of my car.

  So you accept the idea of getting a car (and the right to use it)
from Renault and not being allowed to use the logo, but reject the
idea of getting an OS (and the right to modify) from Debian and not
being allowed to modify the logo?

>>   That's a bit far-fetched, isn't it?  Or are you also implying
>> that the Debian project members shouldn't ever be allowed near
>> non-free software either, even for their daily job?
> If their daily job is paid by Debian and for Debian (excluding
> non-free and contrib, which are not in any sense par of Debian) , I
> think they should not be using proprietary software.

  I am not aware of anyone paid by Debian.  I'm not sure I would like
that to happen.  But anyway, that's not the point.  We're discussing
"normal" volunteer Debian project members.

>> > And if you are not able to follow your own principles, you have
>> > to review these principles that apparently does not fit for you,
>> > despite your goodwill.
>>   And that's how the FSF and the GNU project produce non-free
>> documentation, is it?  Oh, sorry, I forgot, the freedom criteria
>> only applies to software released as software, not software
>> embedded in documentation.
> Yes, you forgot that there are several definitions of freedom
> around.

  And software, it seems.  For the sake of this discussion, could we
please stick to the Debian definition of both freedom and software?

>> Submit bugs where our policies are not being followed, yes.  Tell
>> us they are inconsistent, no.  Not before the GFDL problem is
>> fixed.
> Your policies are also mine, as I'm a Debian applicant and a Debian
> user. And at this point I think that some parts of the policy are
> not as clear one may think at start.

  If by that you mean we should add an explicit "We define software as
everything non-hardware" clause to our policy, then I'll agree with
you.  If by that you're trying to get another definition in that
clause, then that's not making policy clearer, that's changing it.
I'm not agaist changing policy per se, but in that particular case I
would disagree :-)

Roland Mas

The best definition of an immortal is someone who hasn't died yet.
  -- in Ye Gods! (Tom Holt)

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