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Re: Non-free files in source packages?

Lewis Jardine <debian@catbox.co.uk> writes:

> Simon Josefsson wrote:
>> Don Armstrong <don@debian.org> writes:
>>>On Wed, 05 Jan 2005, Simon Josefsson wrote:
>>>>Otherwise, how do Debian handle the situation when the RFC is
>>>>parsed, and become part of the implementation?  In other words,
>>>>where the GPL require that you distribute the RFC because it is the
>>>>preferred "source code" to make modifications to.
>>>The above situation is one where the work is not distributable at all
>>>until the depenency on the RFC is removed, as the RFC itself cannot be
>>>distributed under the terms of the GPL.
>> That is a clear answer.  Alas, in some situations, it may be
>> difficult
>> to remove that dependency.  For example, Libidn derive data tables
>> from RFC 3454.
> In the case of data tables, in many jurisdictions, a mere collection of 
> facts is not copyrightable; the classic example is a telephone directory 
> (everything in it is an uncreative fact; that there are thousands of 
> them, which may have taken a lot of effort to gather, is immaterial).
> It may be the case that the data could be plucked from the RFC and 
> freely distributed, albeit only in places that don't allow 'sweat of the 
> brow' copyrights.

There may be a flaw in comparing the RFC 3454 tables with a telephone

The tables have been carefully composed, as a sub-set of the full
Unicode database.

The creative process may be the selection of characters that have
certain properties, which are to be handled as explained in the
document.  Finding the final tables took a long time.

I think it could be argued that these tables, composed they way they
were, have an artistic value, and hence copyrightable.


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