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Re: DRAFT: debian-legal summary of the QPL

Josh Triplett wrote:
> Matthew Garrett wrote:
>>Josh Triplett <josh.trip@verizon.net> wrote:
>>>"The opinions of debian-legal" consist of the opinions of all those
>>>developers and non-developers who participate on this list.  This is not
>>>a closed list.  If the opinions of some developers diverge from the
>>>opinions on debian-legal, then those developers should start
>>>participating on debian-legal and expressing their opinions.
>>Yes, in an ideal world that would be the case. In the world we live in,
>>people have been intimidated away from participating in debian-legal
>>because of the debating style and perceived extremism of certain
>>participants. Refusal to acknowledge that is likely to end up leading to
>>debian-legal having no influence whatsoever.
> That is unfortunate.  As far as I know, the only "debating style" on
> debian-legal is "be prepared to debate logically, and not just assert".
>  I certainly acknowledge that various members of debian-legal hold
> extreme positions on various issues, but I tend to believe that the
> collective consensus is more moderate, albeit biased by self-selection
> towards those who care about legalistic issues.

Actually, upon further consideration, I suspect the primary reason that
debian-legal can be perceived as unapproachable is the "case law"
approach, which means that decisions that occurred in on debian-legal
some time in the past are often dug up and referenced, and therefore new
participants have a steep learning curve to catch up with all the
"common knowlege, discussed a million times" issues.  The DFSG FAQ does
partially address this issue for the most widely-referenced issues, but
slightly less common issues often receive a "go read the archives"
response, which is sometimes harsher than necessary.

- Josh Triplett

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