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Re: The draft Position statement on the GFDL

On Tue, May 11, 2004 at 05:23:21PM +0100, Henning Makholm wrote:
> Nothing prevents them from doing so. That, however, does not affect
> the *fact* that, for whatever reasons, they do not *actually* do
> so. Hence a claim that they do is *factually incorrect*.

I'm very dubious about this concept.

It's generally true that not a lot of money is made off of hypothetical
projects.  It's also generally true that when people talk about making
money, they are talking about making money over a period of time, not at
some instant in time.  Also, making money involves more than just sales
(it involves promotion, and production, and so on).

You've proposed a license for a work [which I've never seen, so have
not examined] makes some claim about making money, and that you have a
hypothetical derivative work where that claim would be false.

Even if I grant that a particular work might have this flaw, it seems
to me that this is a flaw in that work.  Also, a patches only license
can put us in exactly the same state of factual incorrectness.

That said, for the cases I can imagine involving such work -- if I
cared about it at all -- it would be easy enough to add a statement of
the form "while the free software foundation made money from earlier
editions to this work, I don't think they will be making any money from
this edition for some time."  Your hypothetical "factual incorrectness"
is purely contextual, and it's probably possible to fix the context that
the statement is no longer incorrect.

Then again, if your primary concern is not "presenting the facts clearly",
but "expressing righteous indignation", I can see why you wouldn't like
this approach.


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