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Bug#280485: Licence question for DocBook: The Definitive Guide


The Debian package of DocBook: The Definitive Guide is currently
orphaned and unmaintained. I'm considering maintaining it as I need to
consult it from time-to-time. While investigating the package I noticed
this release-critical bug against it:


This relates to the licencing of TDG and is an issue because a recent
general resolution of the Debian project ruled that works licenced under
the GFDL are free according to the standards of freedom Debian has set
for itself, provided they do not contain unmodifiable sections. We would
prefer to distribute TDG in the "free" section of the archive if
possible. The problem with unmodifiable sections is that they are
against the idea of free software (and free documentation) - that you
have the freedom to make any changes necessary or wanted and share them
with the world.


Would it be possible for Norman Walsh and O'Reilly & Associates, Inc. to
grant permission for "DocBook: The Definitive Guide" to be distributed
without the back cover text? The reason is that back cover texts are
unmodifiable and irremovable. A statement from both copyright holders
giving permission to distribute TDG under the GFDL with no invariant
sections, front cover texts or back cover texts should be sufficient.
Alternatively, removing the text "; with the Back-Cover Texts being Back
Cover Text" from the licence text of the upcoming release would suffice.


Thanks in advance for any assistance or clarifications you may be able
to offer.



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