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Re: generated source files, GPL and DFSG

On Fri, Jul 22, 2005 at 11:47:09PM +0200, Florian Weimer wrote:
> > 2) Does a GPLed work have to include the preferred form of modification?
> >
> > Probably, and this may include the source code for the graphics.
> > However, this may also be affected by the copyright holder's
> > interpretation of the preferred form of modification and whether the
> > GPLed code is a derived work of the graphics or not. On the other hand,
> > if we accept my opinion on point (1), even if we need to include the
> > pov-ray models we are not required to build from them in order to
> > satisfy the DFSG. 
> I think it's not acceptable to yse pregenerated files to prevent
> software from entering contrib.  (Look at all the Java programs, for
> instance.)  If there's a povray dependency, the software cannot be
> included in main.

If you mean "images generated from povray are non-free because they can't
be built from source without a non-free component", I'd have to disagree
on the grounds that the conclusion is so patently absurd, the premises
must be flawed (whether or not I'm able to pinpoint that flaw).

Looking at it more closely, nothing in DFSG#2 requires that the source be
usable; only that it be source.  That is, if the source to a program is
written in an expensive, proprietary language, it's still source, and
satisfies DFSG#2.  That doesn't mean Debian has to accept it; meeting the
DFSG is a prerequisite, but not a guarantee of inclusion, and Debian is
free to refuse to include software for other reasons (such as "we can't
build this source").  I just can't agree that a freely-licensed work, with
source (such as an image with povray source) can be accurately branded non-
free because the tools to build that source are non-free.

Glenn Maynard

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