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Re: [PROPOSAL] Full text of GPL must be included

csurchi@debian.org (Christian Surchi) writes:

> I'm wondering about the meaning of "distribution". *Our* distribution
> is the whole distro or a single package? What do we distribute? And
> if we distribute a single package too, can we distribute GPL text in
> the same place (more or less) and in the same way (mirror or cd for
> example)? Or should GPL mean that GPL is *inside* the package?

> Am I clear?

We distribute Debian in its entirety.  We distribute a *complete*
system, which is why we work so hard to ensure that everything fits
together.  Just as each package can assume that an essential component
is available for use (say, bash or perl) by its binaries, each package
should be able to assume that a copy of the GPL has been placed on the
system.  It is the *same* assumption.

For third party packages, I agree that RMS has a point.  For example,
a company producing a GPL software product (and thereby being a good
citizen of the free software community) and wishing to distribute its
software in deb form, should include a copy of the GPL in the package,
since it is an independent product from Debian proper.

Our packages, however, are designed to be used on our distribution, and
are distributed as such.  Therefore, one copy of the GPL per
distribution (i.e., as an essential part of the distribution) should be

- Brian

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