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Re: Bug#316487: debian-installer-manual: Missing copyright credit: Karsten M. Self for section C.4

(It's all well and good to say one's dropping a thread, but so much
harder to stick to.  Trying, trying ...)

On Sat, Jul 02, 2005 at 03:20:31AM +0100, Matthew Garrett wrote:
> Really. Listen to yourself. Are you honestly claiming that someone
> asking that we acknowledge his (involuntary) contribution to Debian is
> an unreasonable act? Are you honestly claiming that choosing to rewrite
> that text instead of giving due credit is not petty?

I've never claimed that asking for acknowledgement is unreasonable;
merely that removing the work is a legitimate alternative.  I don't
care if rewriting the text is "petty"; there can be valid reasons for
doing so, and the task of weighing those reasons should be the

> > In my viewpoint, (a) is not wrong in any ethical or moral way
> > (legally, I don't know and would prefer not to guess); coercing Debian
> > maintainers to include a work in future releases against their will and
> > judgement is.
> You think it's ethical to rewrite a perfectly good section of text
> rather than give appropriate credit to the original author? I think
> you're mad.

It's clear that Joey had reasons for wanting to do so, if he was going
to offer his own, personal time to do the rewriting.  The fact that he
was prepared to do so is proof enough, to me, that there were reasons
more compelling than "not wanting to give acknowledgement".  (I really
don't care what those reasons were.)

For example, I've rewritten small source files because the license text
was over fifty lines long with many dozens of contributors listed,
and there was no way to determine which of those contributors actually
had a hand in that code.  So, I rewrote a perfectly good bit of code
rather than give credit to the original authors, because giving credit
took nearly a whole page of text in the manual.  There are perfectly
legitimate reasons (besides being "mad") to rewrite to avoid crediting--and
if you or the author of the code/text being rewritten don't agree with
those reasons, d-legal isn't the place to dispute them.

(Of course, one or the other does need to be done, both in unstable and
in existing stable releases--either credit the author, or stop using it;
nobody is claiming that doing nothing is an acceptable option.)

Glenn Maynard

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