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Re: Affero General Public License

<quote who="Steve Langasek" date="Mon, Feb 06, 2006 at 06:20:25PM -0800">
> On Tue, Feb 07, 2006 at 02:00:03AM +0000, Kai Hendry wrote:
> > There is a python library I want to package (#349763) that uses the
> > Affero General Public License (AGPL).
> > http://www.affero.org/oagpl.html
> > I thought I should just check with you guys if the license is OK for
> > Debian.
> No, it is not.  The requirement of source redistribution to third
> parties that you are not distributing binaries to is incompatible with
> the DFSG.

I don't think that issue is a closed one. As you and others have
mentioned in other threads, the GPLv3 will probably have a Affero-type
clause. Several people, at least, have spoken up in favor of this sort
of clause being both in the spirit of the GPL and the DFSG.

Even if there was some sort of rough consensus on the AGPL in the past,
I think that we need to *at least* discuss this a bit more and and a bit
more widely before we risk writing off some large future subset of GPL
works as being non-free.

As it turns out, I tend to be of the opinion that it is important enough
that users be able to have access to the source code of the programs
they use that we can probably sustain a strictly targetted and flexibly
defined limit on modification that serves only to protect this freedom.
We did something similar both for copyleft in general and for
GPLv2(2)(c) in particular.

I would love to see web.py in Debian. I suspect that, one way or
another, the this issue will be resolved in the GPLv3 process. :)


Benjamin Mako Hill

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