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Re: AGPL and Debian

"Bernhard R. Link" <brlink@debian.org> writes:

> * Simon Josefsson <simon@josefsson.org> [081129 13:34]:
>> > Current hosting services usually only have one project for a specific
>> > piece of software with a limited set of people allowed to change it.
>> > I don't see how "I do not want to maintain this software, I just need
>> > this patch with a minor hard-coded modification hosted somewhere
>> > so that I can run the software" gives you access to any hosting
>> > services.
>> I won't point to specific projects to avoid embarrassment, but I have
>> published some projects on Google Code which is a fork of an existing
>> free software project plus some "ugly patches".  I had to rename the
>> project, but that's easy.
> And you think that once there will be hundreds of such renamed projects
> of the same program which only have some patches that are not very
> usefull for most people because of having to specific solutions and no
> activity but some "please do not delete the project, I need the source
> hosted to be able to run it" the hosting providers will just let this
> go and not actively prune those pseudo-orphaned projects?

Yes, I believe they will, until it becomes a noticeable problem.  When
this becomes a significant problem for people to think about doing
something about it, technical solutions to solve it will be developed.
For example, http://repo.or.cz/ provides a anonymous-writable branch of
registered projects.

>> Basically, I don't understand the cost argument.  Free software doesn't
>> need to have an total-cost-of-ownership of 0 USD to be free software.
>> Free software often costs much in reality.
> So if I write some software that will usually only used in a way that
> one has to pay huge amounts for the servers and the connections it runs
> on anyway to make some sense, then a license requiring the user of the
> software to "donate" $100 per copy to some free software charity would
> be acceptable for main?

I don't follow what you mean, but I believe a license that requires
anyone to donate $100 per copy would fail DFSG #1.

A program that requires CPU cycles from 100.000 machines to start would
prevent many from using the program, but technically I don't see that by
itself as a reason it couldn't be included in Debian.

Of course, I don't speak for the Debian project about what can and
cannot be included in the Debian OS.


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