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Re: Respect for Upstream Authors and Snippets of Interest

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On Sunday 28 September 2003 20:22, Barak Pearlmutter wrote:
> Jan Schumacher <uzs5p3@uni-bonn.de> writes:
> > > > Fair enough. However, all of these statements are removable, and
> > > > their modification is probably not prohibited by the license.
> > >
> > > The flow of the argument was: one example of Debian's respect for
> > > upstream authors is not removing these requests and offers.  If they
> > > were unremovable, this would have made a poor example.
> >
> > If they are also modifiable, then they are most likely also DFSG-free by
> > the strictest interpretation. I don't think anyone has argued to remove
> > such texts.
> You seem to be having trouble following this.

In the paragraph I am answering to above you talked about a GPLed program and 
statements in a README it included. If you want these to be unmodifiable, you 
will need to give it or both a different license. My point was that if these 
snippets are distributed under the GPL, which I thought you were saying, 
there is no controversy. 

> Again, I was referring to unmodifiable but removable snippets.

Ok, that is a different point.

>  Like a
> copy of the heart-rending email from his cancer-stricken sister that
> inspired an upstream author to study molecular biology, work on
> colon-cancer oncogenes, and write a biosequence-processing program,
> which is being packaged for Debian.  Stuff like that.  Stuff that is
> not modifiable, of interest, reasonable to include, not code, not
> documentation, not technical in nature, not part of the program but
> merely accompanying it, and small compared to the technical thing it
> accompanies.  Stuff whose removal would often impoverish our
> understanding of the circumstances of a work's creation.
> De-facto, we allow such snippets in Debian.  It would be reasonable to
> discuss whether this informal but longstanding policy should be
> changed.  But that would be new separate topic, which (if we choose to
> discuss it) should be divorced from attempts to resolve the GFDL
> question.

If there is interest in discussing this, let this be discussed in a different 
thread. But the GNU manifesto is hardly just a little snippet, and that and 
other political essays were what was being talked about in the GFDL thread.

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