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Re: Interpreting the GFDL GR

Henning Makholm wrote:
> Scripsit MJ Ray <mjr@phonecoop.coop>
>> I assert that their arguments are not part of the position statement
>> (= not part of what was approved by vote) and that trying to interpret
>> hidden meanings of the position statement is daft.
> As far as I can see our choices are: (1) Ignoring the GR, which would
> mean that our advice would not say anything about how the Debian
> Project feels about licences. (2) Accepting the GR as a statement
> about the literal meaning of the GFDL, which is simply untrue. (3)
> Trying to find some way of understanding the GR that is neither false
> nor self-contradictory.
> If you have a fourth option that I have overlooked, I would love to
> hear about it.

(4) Not interpreting the GR to specify any particular interpretation of
either the GFDL or the DFSG, and simply taking it at face value as a
statement that the GFDL should be considered DFSG-free without affecting
the interpretation of any other license.

This position is not self-contradictory.  We don't get to "interpret"
the GFDL.  It isn't a set of guidelines; it's a license, and what it
literally says is what it means.  However, this doesn't mean that the GR
said the particular clauses in the GFDL are free; the GR just *defined*
the GFDL *as a whole* to be free.  It would thus not contradict the GR
at all if we continued to interpret any identical clause in another
license as non-free.

- Josh Triplett

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