Debian packaging and (possible) Eterm license violations
I'm an occasional Debian user and, while doing package reviews for
Fedora Extras, stumbled into the Eterm mix-of-source-licenses situation
The following email was sent to the Debian Eterm maintainer. I'm
forwarding it to this list because I've not (yet) received a response
and because I'm curious what "right thing to do" is within the Debian
packaging rules (or conventions or...?) for cases such as this one.
-------- Forwarded Message --------
> From: Ed Hill <email@example.com>
> To: firstname.lastname@example.org
> Subject: debian maintainer for Eterm -- license questions
> Date: Thu, 16 Mar 2006 22:55:32 -0500
> Hi Laurence,
> My name is Ed and I'm a volunteer in the Fedora project. Please pardon
> the personal email -- I located your name as the current debian packager
> of Eterm. Its come to my attention that various files within Eterm seem
> to have conflicting license terms as described at:
> which is a review for possible inclusion of Eterm within the Fedora
> Extras repository. In a nutshell, the various Eterm source files
> include the following licenses: BSD-like, LGPL, GPL, and at least one
> [src/netdisp.c] that essentially says "this code cannot be sold for
> profit" which violates the Debian Social Contract (DFSG #1).
> Were you aware of these conflicting licenses? Have any of them been
> re-licensed (hopefully to something that doesn't restrict for-profit
> sale!) by the original authors? Or, can the software be built and used
> without shipping these files?
> I'm asking because the main upstream author (Michael Jennings) seems to
> think that the Fedora Guidelines (which are in some ways quite similar
> to the much-older DSC) are "silly rules which discriminate against
> packages for no real reason":
> and has not been particularly helpful as we try to sort out the overall
> terms. Ultimately, we're hoping Eterm can be included in FE but its
> looking doubtful.
> Any help, insight, etc. that you can provide will be appreciated!
Edward H. Hill III, PhD
office: MIT Dept. of EAPS; Rm 54-1424; 77 Massachusetts Ave.
Cambridge, MA 02139-4307
emails: email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org
URLs: http://web.mit.edu/eh3/ http://eh3.com/