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Re: Poll results: User views on the FDL issue

--- Glenn Maynard <glenn@zewt.org> wrote:
> On Wed, Apr 20, 2005 at 12:21:38AM -0400, Marty wrote:
> > By protecting the authors' rights, same as the GPL.  You must have 
> > missed by main point.
> You seem to be confused.  The GPL is not primarily designed to
> protect
> the author's rights.  It's designed to protect *user's* rights, which
> always come first.  A complete prohibition of modification does not
> protect user's rights; on the contrary, it abolishes them.

Sometimes having invariant sections protects a user's right to see the
author's work as the author intended it to be seen, which is a point I
made before that you seem to be sidestepping. Is it inconvenient for
you to consider it?

> (Your argument would seem to mean that Qmail is free, because its
> complete prohibition of modification protects its author's rights.)
> > I'll be disappointed is nobody has come up with a better argument
> that 
> > off-topic invariant sections can restrict "freedom."
> I'm quite confused as to how anyone can possibly claim that something
> which can't be modified at all is "free".

Dude, that's not true. You are making a straw man out of GFDL by saying
stuff licensed under it "can't be modified at all." The real GFDL is
not like that. The real GFDL allows for the preservation of the
integrity of certain important but unrelated special sections of the
document that have some sort of political importance or benefit to Free
Software as a whole. It does not cause something to be put into a state
where it "can't be modified at all."

> The onus is always on the person placing restrictions on users to
> show
> that the restriction does not impede freedom.  Restrictions are not
> Free by default; they must be proven, and the few people claiming
> invariant sections are "free" have so far utterly failed to do so.

Two points:

1) Just because you keep saying this, does not make it true. It's just
your opinion.

2) We have shown how invariant sections can prevent the supression of
unpopular views or opinions that the software or documentation's author
finds are important for users to see. This really should not be
construed as utter failure to prove that there is potential merit to
allowing the use of these restrictions in some fashion, so please quit
saying we failed when we really haven't.

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