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License of wget.texi: suggest removal of invariant sections

Summary: The issue with wget.texi is that the GNU GPL is an Invariant
Section; since the GNU GPL cannot be modified anyway, this just forces
gpl.texi to always be distributed with wget.texi, even when you're
just distributing the manual.

The solution is to change "with the Invariant Sections being ``GNU
General Public License'' and ``GNU Free Documentation License''" to
"with no Invariant Sections"; nothing changes as far as the GFDL is
concerned, since it has to be included anyway, and the GPL gets
included only when it needs to be included.

On Thu, 18 May 2006, Noèl Köthe wrote:
> Am Mittwoch, den 17.05.2006, 19:04 +0200 schrieb Francesco Poli:
> > I don't agree that GR-2006-001 outcome makes this a non-bug.
> > AFAICS from the bug log, it seems that wget documentation
> > includes invariant sections: hence GR-2006-001 restates
> > its non-freeness.
> Don explain the problem of this part of wget-1.10.2/doc/wget.texi to
> me, so its not a problem of the GFDL license itself on the
> documentation but the problem of this text in the file:
> "Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this
> document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License,
> Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software
> Foundation; with the Invariant Sections being ``GNU General Public
> License'' and ``GNU Free Documentation License'', with no
> Front-Cover Texts, and with no Back-Cover Texts. A copy of the
> license is included in the section entitled ``GNU Free Documentation
> License''." (its twice in the file)

The reason why this poses a problem for Debian is because it requires
the GNU GPL to always be included with wget.texi, even when nothing
which is actually GPLed is being distributed along with wget.texi.
Debian requires that everything that we distribute in main to be
modifiable; that is, so modified that it can actually be deleted.

The only exception to this is for copyright notices and licenses when
they are acting as licenses, since neither of them can be modified.
However, the moment that a license stops acting as a license (as the
GPL would in the wget.texi case when wget.texi is distributed alone)
our users should be able to remove the GPL from their distribution of

We'd like very much for wget's excellent documentation to be
distributed with Debian and the hundreds of Debian derived
distributions. However, we must satisfy our contract with our users
and only distribute works in main that satisfy the DFSG.

If you have any questions for me that I can answer to help you
understand our position more completely in regards to the GFDL, please
don't hesitate to ask.

Don Armstrong

Nothing is as inevitable as a mistake whose time has come.
 -- Tussman's Law

http://www.donarmstrong.com              http://rzlab.ucr.edu

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