Re: Hacking License
Hi Xavier actually, before writing to the debian-legal list, I
compared the license against the three tests
(I've found the "The tentacle of evil test" on the Wikipedia page
about DFSG, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Debian_Free_Software_Guidelines#debian-legal_tests_for_DFSG_compliance).
Il giorno mar 4 dic 2018 alle ore 10:41 Xavier <firstname.lastname@example.org> ha scritto:
> Le 04/12/2018 à 10:07, Giacomo Tesio a écrit :
> > If, on the other hand, no new copyleft license is allowed to enter
> > Debian, I'm fine with it, but I think this should be clearly stated
> > somewhere in the social contract.
> No Debian accepts any license that are DFSG compliant (DFSG is just a
> guidelines). You may use the 3 tests to understand what may be wrong :
> * https://wiki.debian.org/DesertIslandTest
The Hacking License only requires to distribute sources of Derived
Works to the users of such Derived Work, so it passes this test.
> * https://wiki.debian.org/DissidentTest
Same as above.
> * The tentacle of evil test (not found in wiki, why ?):
> "Imagine that the author is hired by a large evil corporation and,
> now in their thrall, attempts to do the worst to the users of the
> program: to make their lives miserable, to make them stop using the
> program, to expose them to legal liability, to make the program non-
> free, to discover their secrets, etc. The same can happen to a
> corporation bought out by a larger corporation bent on destroying
> free software in order to maintain its monopoly and extend its evil
> empire. To be free, the license cannot allow even the author to take
> away the required freedoms."
To be honest this puzzled me a bit: is "the author" here
1. the author of the software or
2. the author of the license?
In case of 1, if the authors of the software violates the right of
users, his grants on any patch they received terminate, including the
copyright assignment that let them update the license.
In case of 2, if the author of the Hacking License get hired by a
large evil corporation (trust me, very unlikely in practice...
compared to me, Linus has been such a kind guy all these years... :-D)
I cannot change the license of any software licensed under the Hacking
To be honest, to my untrained eye the tentacle of evil test might be a
case against GNU License common use of "or (at your option) any later
version." because if a project moves to an _apparently_ good new
version of GPL and accept patches under it, and then turns out that
the upgrade had issues, they might have huge troubles to go back at a
But... you know... IANAL... ;-)