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Re: Final text of GPL v3

This one time, at band camp, Francesco Poli said:
> On Sun, 1 Jul 2007 15:41:49 -0700 Steve Langasek wrote:
> > On Sun, Jul 01, 2007 at 12:22:08PM +0200, Francesco Poli wrote:
> > "Border-line" implies that it could go either direction.  This is
> > not true. Regardless of how you feel about this clause, the GPLv2 is
> > recognized as a free license under the DFSG.
> In this sense, it's "border-line": it could be or not be enough to
> make the license non-free.  Upon careful analysis, it turns out to be
> close to the DFSG-freeness boundary, but fortunately on the free side.
> This is my own view on clause 2c.  IANADD, TINASOTODP (This Is Not A
> Statement Of The Official Debian Position).

You continually miss the point that the GPL is explicitly noted as a
free license, which means that anything in the GPL is DFSG free.  That it
doesn't meet your personal standards means that your personal standards
are not in line with the DFSG, not that there is a problem with the

> > > Compare with the obnoxious advertising clause of the 4-clause BSD
> > > license: it's an inconvenience close to fail the DFSG, IMO.  But
> > > we accept it as DFSG-free.  However, I would *not* be happy to see
> > > a license that *extends* this restriction to a wider scenario.
> > 
> > The 4-clause BSD is also not "close to failing the DFSG".

See above.  If you don't believe this to hold for the 4 clause BSD, in
the grand tradition of -legal, I refer you to the archives.

> [...]
> > to call something "close to non-free" is just an expression of your
> > dislike for it, masquerading as an objective judgement.
> Well, it seems that even DFSG-freeness judgements are not always so
> objective, or otherwise we would not be discussing about them all the
> time on this list...

Or that some people like to deliberately misinterpret the DFSG in order
to grandstand on this list ....

> [...]
> > > Clause 2c of GPLv2 is close to fail the DFSG, but passes.  Clause
> > > 5d of GPLv3 is worse (since it's more restrictive, being extended
> > > to more cases), and hence it's even closer to fail the DFSG.
> > 
> > There is no qualitative difference between the two clauses.  We have
> > *never* treated quantitative differences between licenses as
> > relevant to freeness. Would you claim that the GPLv2's "make the
> > source available for three years" requirement is ok, but a clause
> > saying "make the source available for six years" is not?
> I think you are talking about clause 3b of GPLv2, aren't you?
> Maybe you picked the wrong example, because clause 3b *is* a non-free
> restriction.  Fortunately there's another alternative option,
> represented by clause 3a, which is DFSG-free, and consequently GPLv2
> is acceptable.

No, again you have misread the DFSG.  3b is DFSG free, because the DFSG
says the GPL v2 is free.  Debian currently uses 3a because it is much
less effort, but that doesn't mean that 3b is non free.
|   ,''`.                                            Stephen Gran |
|  : :' :                                        sgran@debian.org |
|  `. `'                        Debian user, admin, and developer |
|    `-                                     http://www.debian.org |

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