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Re: revenue sharing agreement with DuckDuckGo

On Thu, Mar 29, 2012 at 11:04:16AM +0800, Paul Wise wrote:
> No. Whether or not browsers should identify the OS they are running on
> is not part of my point (I think they should not).

FWIW, at present in Debian that choice is up to browser maintainers.
What we're discussing here will not change in anything that aspect, nor
I would want to.

> My point is that where the money goes should be a choice of the user,
> with the default suggested to the user determined by upstream. Debian
> should exert no influence over that choice, except maybe asking
> upstream to add us to the choices available to the user.

This is a very interesting aspect of this discussion. In fact it is the
tip of a much more general discussion we could have, although I suspect
it could go on for a long while... I don't think Debian as a Project has
a position on that matter, at least not yet. What happens now is that,
once more, the choice is up to the individual package maintainers, as
per Debian default governance model.

I'm sure DDG is contacting all _distributors_ of web browsers proposing
similar arrangements, because it is distributors who get the browsers to
the users that will do web searches.

As upstream authors also act as distributors, I'm sure DDG is also
contacting them. And if there will ever be a conflict (e.g. upstream has
t=upstream and we have an agreement for t=debian), I'm all for
contacting upstream and let them decide what they want to do with the t=
thingie in Debian. I surely would do that if I were the maintainer.

But at present, that t= thingie does not seem to exist upstream, or at
least I can't see it in iceweasel configuration on my sid machine. The
potential DDG donations that could benefit Free Software --- either at
Debian or at some of our upstreams --- simply get lost. I think that is
worse than driving those donations to Debian.

All in all, as a project we should simply see the agreement as something
like "for every web browser in Debian who decides to use t=something,
Debian will receive donations". If, due to the usual way we maintain
packages, including upstream relationships, that set will shrink to
nothing, too bad. The agreement will simply allow the set to exist, it
will not magically fill it with browsers that implement t=something.

Stefano Zacchiroli     zack@{upsilon.cc,pps.jussieu.fr,debian.org} . o .
Maître de conférences   ......   http://upsilon.cc/zack   ......   . . o
Debian Project Leader    .......   @zack on identi.ca   .......    o o o
« the first rule of tautology club is the first rule of tautology club »

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