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Re: handling Mozilla with kid gloves [was: GUADEC report]

On Mon, Jul 12, 2004 at 02:46:13AM -0500, Branden Robinson wrote:
> In any case, the attitude that "kicking Mozilla to non-free is a scary
> thought" strikes me as ignorant and short-sighted.  The Mozilla Project
> went open-source because they wanted to be part of the community, and our
> response is to elevate them to godhood by refusing to study and question
> their licensing decisions?

It's good that we study and question their licensing decisions. However,
I think that in order for releases to be possible the release manager
must have the freedom to decide "this is still an improvement over what
we used to have" and release anyway while the discussion is pending, in
cases where the debate is over what Debian finds acceptable and not over
licence violations. Otherwise debian-legal has the entire project over a
barrel: we must be in a situation where every important component is
simultaneously not in question, and the mere existence of question in
any important component is sufficient to stop us releasing, even when we
haven't regressed. (Compare the policy on fails-to-build-from-source
bugs: if it hasn't built on that architecture before, i.e. hasn't
regressed, then it isn't release-critical.)

The perfect is the enemy of the good.

The flames that issue forth every time someone dares to downgrade or
suggest temporarily ignoring a "foo is non-free" bug that came from
-legal speak for themselves.

> We do collectively understand that there are Free, full-featured graphical
> browsers *other* than Netscape, right?

You're seriously suggesting that Debian wouldn't be laughed out of the
park for releasing without Mozilla at the moment? If you aren't
suggesting this, then that comment is irrelevant.


Colin Watson                                  [cjwatson@flatline.org.uk]

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