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Re: Validity of DFSG #10

On Sun, Jan 06, 2013 at 05:46:44PM +0000, Bart Martens wrote:
> I agree that it would be nice to have an authoritative and maintained list of
> verified DFSG-free licenses.
> But we should keep the DFSG and the list strictly separate.  If not, we would
> need a 3:1 majority on every change of the list, or we would be giving the list
> maintainers the authority to in fact change the DFSG without 3:1 majority.  In
> my opinion the DFSG should not even mention the existence of the list (so no
> "pointer"),

That's fine, I've no strong opinion on that, either way. My main point
is that dropping DFSG §10 is at best an aesthetic issue. The important
related issue is that we're not particularly good at documenting which
licenses we consider DFSG-free and which we don't.

> How would you organize setting up an authoritative and maintained list of
> verified DFSG-free licenses ? Which formal steps would need to be completed
> before an additional license or license version would be added to the list ?
> How to deal with mistakes on the list ? Do we have sufficient volunteers with
> sufficient legal knowledge to maintain such list ? Maybe this part should be
> dealt with further on debian-legal.

Hold on :-) All you're discussing here already exists. FTP masters vet
software that enters the archive, de facto deciding whether the
associated licenses are DFSG free or not. I didn't want to imply that we
should change anything of that. We should rather consolidate the work
they do and index licenses, decisions, and rationales for such decisions
in a central place that people can look at.

I haven't asked, but I suspect FTP masters have already enough on their
plates to be interested in doing the publishing/indexing work too. But
it's something that anyone can pick up, possibly agreeing on FTP masters
on a way of being notified of new decisions.

Stefano Zacchiroli  . . . . . . .  zack@upsilon.cc . . . . o . . . o . o
Maître de conférences . . . . . http://upsilon.cc/zack . . . o . . . o o
Debian Project Leader . . . . . . @zack on identi.ca . . o o o . . . o .
« the first rule of tautology club is the first rule of tautology club »

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