[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: A radical approach to rewriting the DFSG

Scripsit Lewis Jardine <lewisjardine@tiscali.co.uk>

> Maybe an explicit statement of this point would be a useful addition,
> possibly in the introduction?

I think you're right in general, but I'm not happy with your exact

> Note that the /license/ is the terms of the /license text/ as
> interpreted by the author, _not_ the terms of the /license text/ as
> interpreted by any third-party. Any /license text/, even if free
> when interpreted in the most common manner, may be interpreted by
> the author in such a way as to make the /license/ non-free. "

I think it would be bad idea to entrench the "the author is always
right" rule of thumb in the DFSG itself. We *usually* respect the
author's wishes, but in a tentacles-of-evil situation we may need to
explicitly disagree with a strange license-text interpretation that
the author acquires *after* the Debian system has become dependent on
his work.

Instead, I have written:

    If the author has granted rights by stating that a specific
    <b>license text</b> applies to the work, the word <b>license</b>
    refers to the <em>meaning</em> of the license text in the specific
    context of the particular work.

    <i>Thus, even if the same license <em>text</em> applies to two
    different works, one work can be free and the other non-free,
    because of differences in the way the authors apply a generic
    license text, or because the meaning of the licence text
    explicitly depends on inherent properties of the licensed work.</i>

Henning Makholm          "*Tak* for de ord. *Nu* vinker nobelprisen forude."

Reply to: