Re: Constitutional, Parliamentary Issues (was Re: CFV: on-freearchive removal)
>>"Clay" == Clay Crouch <firstname.lastname@example.org> writes:
Clay> On Mon, 17 Jul 2000, Jules Bean wrote:
>> Perhaps this concept could be generalised to mention 'Foundational
>> Documents' or similar? The extra generality may just be a waste of
>> legalese, but these could include the social contract, the DFSG and
>> the constitution, and a new document could be voted into this class at
>> the same majority.
I think we should be careful about the documents that we
afford the same deree of protection from changes. While I think that
there are indeed documents that should be afforded this protection,
it may not be a bad idea to require a 3:1 super majority to add to
this set. Frivolous additions to this document set may also be
detrimental to the project, and limit our ability to adapt.
We should be very sure that the documents in this list are
indeed ``Foundation'' documents, changing which may well change the
nature of the project.
Clay> I am in agreement here.
Clay> If we ammend the Constitution, we should avoid specifically naming
Clay> individual documents. If we name specific documents, we disallow the
Clay> future issuance of additional "Foundational Documents". Or, at least
Clay> we force ourselves to ammend the Constitution again to afford the
Clay> new document(s) the same protections....
I think I would rather mention the SC and the DFSG
specifically, while retaining the the possibility of adding to the
set of documents that consitute the the foundation set.
However, that is not really the issue. As in most things,
there is a trade-off involved here. There certainly is a value in
protecting core documents from the fad-of-the-day style of changes;
but there is also a danger of being too indiscriminate with labelling
documents as being of the foundation class.
Indeed, I would say that the list of Documents in called the
"Foundational Documents" also deserves protection; and thus a
constitutional amendment to change the list is not an unreasonable
mode. However, in case peoples aesthetics are offended, how about
this, this may help separate changing the list of foundation
documents from a constitutional amendment:
4. The Developers by way of General Resolution or election
Together, the Developers may:
1. Appoint or recall the Project Leader.
2. Amend this constitution, provided they agree with a 3:1 majority.
3. Override any decision by the Project Leader or a Delegate.
4. Override any decision by the Technical Committee, provided they
agree with a 2:1 majority.
- 5. Issue nontechnical policy documents and statements.
- These include documents describing the goals of the project, its
- relationship with other free software entities, and nontechnical
- policies such as the free software licence terms that Debian
- software must meet.
- They may also include position statements about issues of the day.
+ 5. Issue and modify nontechnical policy documents and statements.
+ These include documents describing the goals of the project, its
+ relationship with other free software entities, and nontechnical
+ policies such as the free software licence terms that Debian
+ software must meet. A special clause applies to the documents
+ labelled as "Foundation Documents". These documents are those
+ that are deemed to be critical to the core of the project,
+ they tend to define what the project is, and lay the
+ foundations of its structure. The developers may
+ modify a foundation document provided they agree with a 3:1
+ majority. Initially, the list of foundation Documents consists
+ of this document, The Debian Constitution, as well as the
+ documents known as the Debian GNU/Linux Social Contract and the
+ Debian Free Software Guidelines. The list of the documents
+ that are deemed to be "Foundation Documents" may be changed
+ by the developers provided they agree with a 3:1 majority.
+ They may also include position statements about issues of the day.
6. Together with the Project Leader and SPI, make decisions about
property held in trust for purposes related to Debian. (See
This list may be provided separately from the constitution;
and a constitutional amendment may not be needed to amend the list
(though changes to the list would still require convincing 3/4 of the
People think my friend George is weird because he wears
sideburns...behind his ears. I think he's weird because he wears
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Manoj Srivastava <email@example.com> <http://www.debian.org/%7Esrivasta/>
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