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Re: working with FSF on Debian Free-ness assessment

On Wed, Dec 25, 2013 at 07:49:37PM +0100, Dominik George wrote:
> Just out of curiosity: What's their definition of freedom anyway?
> Forcing the user to not use non-free software takes away their freedom,
> but probably the FSF does not get that, or they wouldn't be pushing the
> GPL so badly.

You're looking at the issue the wrong way - you're looking at it from
the "Free Software is good because it helps programmers" lens, not the
"Free software is good because it helps users" lens.

Free Software is meaningless without having free users, users that
aren't able to take control of their software are not free users,
they're slaves to the creators of the software. Permissive licensing is
good for *programmers*, since it gives *corperations* and *people* the
freedom to do stuff with the code, not the *user*. The GPL asserts that
the *users* have the freedom.

I say this as someone who licenses most of his work under the MIT/Expat

> But is there any real reason behind that, apart from the religious ones?


And for the record - Debian's guidelines are *more* strict than the
FSF's in some places, and *less* in others.

For instance, we have no issue with pointing users to non-free software,
whereas the FSF would have a huge issue with this.

We have a huge issue with the GFDL's invariant clause, the FSF clearly

Don't write this off as "religious" without understanding where we as a
project stand - we're plenty "religious" ourselves.


 .''`.  Paul Tagliamonte <paultag@debian.org>  |   Proud Debian Developer
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