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Re: Is AGPLv3 DFSG-free?

"Arc Riley" <arcriley@gmail.com> wrote:
> I think at this point we're all clear on the terms of the license.  If there
> are remaining questions, they should be asked.

The following questions remain unanswered and are interesting to me.
Whenever these have been posted, the answers have been qualified to be
useless in general, or otherwise unsatisfactory.  There may be other
remaining questions, but others will have to post them.

Is there a generally-accepted statement that posting to a free VCS
solution is sufficient?

And, how can one do that and at the same time keep being anonymous
(dissident test)? [asked by Miry; I don't think that suggesting fraud
is an acceptable answer.]

How does that scale when a lot of users modify or customize the code?
[asked by Miry; previously dismissed as merely technical but seems
like a practical problem for the project.]

If the previously-available modified copy that you are using goes
offline, does one then have to post the source?

How can an application deny remote access to people without
interacting with them at all?

Is it a loophole in the GPL that I am not compelled to give Sarah my
modified Iceweasel's source code if I let her use my laptop's copy?

Do some advocate Affero because they find some non-free webapps like
Launchpad irresistable, wish they had the source to those and see
publishing more software with Affero clauses as a possible way of -
eventually - getting the source of those non-free webapps?  In short,
are they punishing the world because of their weakness?

> We've come to a point where our varying beliefs across a spectrum from
> anti-copyleft to strong copyleft are being voiced.  This is what I have
> written earlier in this thread in degrading into personal opinions rather
> than arguing DFSG-freeness.

Sure.  I think this is because the data is simply not available yet
and some participants have posted personal opinions in order to
improve their own AGPL'd software package's position, because the
sensible default position - reasonable prudence - would mean that
their package is non-free.

> The issue of whether the AGPLv3 should be used is moot here.  It is being
> used, it's popularity is growing, and Debian users are choosing to use
> AGPLv3 software regardless of whether it's packaged or how it's labeled.

Many of those users will be doing so because they are unaware of the
consequences of the AGPLv3 and the grey areas in whether the software
is free software.  I'd even bet that many of them are violating the
licence by not offering source, just like people misapplied the FDL
and the CCv2 until we started contacting them and requesting fixes.

> The only issue at hand is whether the Debian project is going to behave in a
> combative manner against these projects in labeling them as "non-free" or
> accept them as part of the body of free software.

No, there are other issues at hand, including why FSF keeps refusing
to answer questions about the licence from free software supporters,
while simultaneously blessing non-free-software licences and web
services and funding astroturf projects, but they're about as
off-topic and flamebait here as suggesting putting something in
non-free is a "combative" act. ;-)

My Opinion Only: see http://people.debian.org/~mjr/
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