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Re: Rejected Package - Licence question

Andreas Fester <Andreas.Fester@gmx.de> wrote:

> An earlier version of the package is already in Debian
> and it also contains the file Manual.texi with the same
> copyright information, but the file was only in the
> source package while the new version now contains a
> -doc package which allows to install the manual.

In other words, the non-free license was just overlooked in the old

> How can I modify the package to allow it to go in main?
> - Do I have to repackage the orig.tar.gz file to get completely
>   rid of the problematic file?
> - Is it sufficient to remove the Manual from the -doc package?

No, you have to remove it from the orig.tar.gz, or...

> - Anything else?

have it relicensed.

> Also, I already contacted the upstream author, and it was not
> really intended to make the Manual non-free by this copyright
> statement; any hints how to make the manual DFSG-compliant
> in the future are welcome (I suppose a valid solution is to
> simply remove the copyright statement from the file).

Err, no, that would make it undistributable even in non-free.  

The best option would be to license the manual under the same license as
the software.  In principle, it's also possible to use a different
license, but that only gives people trouble when making a derivative
work.  If upstream insists that the documentation needs a license that's
specifically designed for documentation (not programs), try to persuade
him of the opposite, using the arguments found in -legal archive.  

If you fail, well, I fear there is currently no license for
documentation that has been approved by -legal.  There were rumors about
some "BSD documentation license", but I never saw it.  Some of the CC
licenses will probably be DFSG free from their next release on, but we
don't know when that's going to happen.  Finally there's the GFDL, which
is a *bad* license, but DFSG-free by GR if the document does not include
any of the GFDL's invariant section options (for the details, read the

Regards, Frank
Frank Küster
Single Molecule Spectroscopy, Protein Folding @ Inst. f. Biochemie, Univ. Zürich
Debian Developer (teTeX)

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