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Re: Public domain and DSFGness

Specifically? I'm trying to produce a CP/M clone distribution which is DSFG-enough to ship with emulators (and also to run on real hardware should people wish). The original Digital Research source has a nasty clause in it which, AFAICT accidentally, means it can't be redistributed, so I'm finding open source alternatives and bundling them together. What this is involving is trawling through the archives trying to find free or public domain pieces and piecing them together.

Example: the command shell I'm using (the CCP in CP/M terminology) is an enhanced command shell alternative called ZCPR. The first version of this, ZCPR1, which contains no copyright notice, and which was released in 1982 to the SIG/M public domain distribution group. I found the release announcement (https://github.com/davidgiven/cpmish/blob/master/third_party/zcpr1/Announcement.pdf) which contains a passing reference to it being released into the public domain. Is this good enough?

I was lucky there in that I found the announcement; there's plenty of source which has nothing at all, not even a copyright notice. For example, everything I've seen printed in Dr. Dobbs' Journal...

On Wed, 12 Jun 2019 at 23:56, Ben Finney <bignose@debian.org> wrote:
David Given <dg@cowlark.com> writes:

> I'm doing some historical data preservation work […] I'm hoping to be
> able to produce a Debian package containing this stuff eventually for
> use in emulators.

Thank you for promoting the preservation and spread of free software.

> Back then people were really slack about licensing. Typically
> So: from Debian's perspective, what's the degree of proof I need to
> provide in order to demonstrate DSFG-ness of works such as this?

This is difficult to discuss in the abstract, because it so often
depends on peculiarities of the specific works and the documentation
surrounding them.

We try to keep these discussions to specific works that are actually
proposed to enter Debian.

Is there a specific work we can examine that you are working to package
for Debian?

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Ben Finney

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