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Re: Adobe open source license -- is this licence free?

On Thu, Jan 26, 2006 at 10:16:10AM +0100, Bas Zoetekouw wrote:
Bas> Hi Yorick!

Hello Bas!

Bas> You wrote:
Bas> > <quote>
Bas> > 1.  Debian will remain 100% free
Bas> > I agree it doesn't say "we promise to distribute each and every piece
Bas> > of software that could fall into the guidelines' reach", 
Bas> Exactly.  It says: "we won't distribute stuff that doesn't adhere to the
Bas> guidelines".  If, according to debian-legal and the ftp masters, choice
Bas> of venue clauses are a violation of the guidelines, we can therefore not
Bas> distribute them.

Well I obviously agree. My point was that the proposed interpretation
was drifting so far from the DFSG that it wasn't arguable that it
wasn't an addition and not a mere interpretation. Anyway, we agree on
this principle.

Bas> So, how, according to you, does such a clause _not_ violate DFSG

The main argument to which I adhere, is flatly that such clauses don't
discriminate against people at all. Let's see, what does
discriminating mean? " To make distinctions on the basis of class or
category" according to
http://dictionary.reference.com/search?q=discriminate . Well, to me a
clause that says that everyone, disregarding any kind of distinction,
is submitted to exactly the same rule, is the very opposite of
discriminating. The fact that the result of that rule is more or less
comfortable depending on to whom it is applied does not change the
fact that everyone is treated in the very same manner.

To consider that licenses with choice of venue clauses discriminate
against people would actually imply that licenses without them are
even more discriminating. Why? Because the argument is based on the
fact that different people suffer a different degree of inconvenience
because of it. Well, the same goes for licenses without such
clauses. Depending on the country in which a complaint based on that
license is filed in, the competent forum will be different. This means
that people for whom application of private international law leads to
being only summoned to court in their home country are advantaged over
those to whom application of private international law would imply
being tried in a foreign country. Some people would have it easier
than others and this would be without any justification. At least with
forum clauses, it is clear for all where you shall be summoned, if at all.

As I have already said, the main problem here is that geography will
always favor some people over others. There is no way out of it, so
let's not pretend some solutions are better than others. They aren't.


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