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

Re: How long is it acceptable to leave *undistributable* files in the kernel package?

@ 18/06/2004 05:45 : wrote Andreas Barth :

 * Josh Triplett (josh.trip@verizon.net) [040617 23:55]:

> Matthew Wilcox wrote:
>> You speak as if this has no negative effects. In fact, it does.
>> By removing, let's say, the tg3 driver, you make Debian unusable
>> for a large percentage of users. Those users turn to other
>> distributions
> Usefulness is not an excuse for distributing non-free sofware, or
> for violating the GPL or any other license; at one point, many
> people "needed" netscape, but that doesn't mean netscape should
> have been in main. In any case, the tg3 driver works fine without
> the firmware on most cards it supports; the firmware is only
> needed in a few cases.

 Please seperate two issues: 1. Are we distributing undistributalbe

1.a. Yes. Some of the firmware are there without a proper redistributable license.

1.b. But not in the case where the firmware is there with a redistributable albeit non-free license. In this case, the file *is* *distributable* because _nor_ is the firmware derivative of the kernel _nor_ /vice-versa/.

1.c. The question is still open where the firmware is there, properly GPL-licensed by its copyright owner but without source. Flamewars^WEnlightening discussions follow if it's the preferred form for modification or not.

 2. Are we distributing non-free files in main?

In the cases b and c above? Yes.

 This discussion was about 1., not about 2.

 Cheers, Andi


Reply to: