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Re: RFD: informal proposal

On Sun, Nov 17, 2002 at 01:19:21PM -0500, Raul Miller wrote:
> On Mon, Nov 18, 2002 at 03:56:45AM +1000, Anthony Towns wrote:
> > > Does anyone see any significant strategies for inconsistency with this
> > > kind of mechanism?
> > It has the problem that it's much easier for a non-supermajority option to
> > win.
> As opposed to the 17 Nov draft which in some cases allows a supermajority
> option to win if it defeats the default option by 1 vote?

No, as opposed to the drafts we've been discussing up until today.

> > If you have:
> > 	A - remove non-free (2:1 supermajority required, say)
> > 	B - handwave about the issue, don't really do anything
> > 	D - further discussion
> > you might get results something like:
> > 	60 A B D
> > 	30 B A D
> > 	10 D B A
> > with the groups being {A} and {B,D}. B defeats D by 90:10, so next we
> > work with {A,B} scaling A down, ending up with B defeats A 40:30, in
> > spite of a majority of developers wanting to remove non-free entirely.
> Sure -- in that context you're proposing that we have a supermajority
> requirement, and a majority is not necessarily a supermajority.

Nononononono. Please, not this again.

There are two issues here. One is to work out direction most people want
to go in. The other is to make sure we don't make fundamental changes
to ourselves with signficant dissent.

The issues are utterly separate. Just because people mildly prefer one
direction over another doesn't mean they're actually unhappy with that
other direction.

> > Alternatively you could possibly end up with something like:
> > 	60 S T D 
> > 	50 T D S
> > where S and T both have a 2:1 supermajority requirement, and D
> > doesn't. The result is S beats T, 60:50, and D beats S 50:30, and
> > D wins. Given T was unanimously preferred to D, that seems like a
> > significant loss.
> I'm not sure I agree.  In this case, D would have been the default option:
> further discussion.  I imagine that, if this situation were to arise,
> further discussion would be a good idea.  [Why do so many people prefer
> who prefer T over D also prefer D over S when so many other people prefer
> S over T?]

Because S is highly controversial, whereas T is generally acceptable.

For example, ten years from now non-free is utterly useless: no one gives
away software that's not DFSG-free, not even Dan Bernstein, and copyright
lengths have shortened so much that even the old unmaintained non-free
software we have now is in the public domain and thus DFSG-free too. OTOH
we're under increasing pressure from governments and law enforcement to
crack down on evil warezers, to the point of having to shut down some
mirrors in the US and parts of Europe if we don't Do Something. We have
a vote and the options are:

	S -- change point (5) of the social contract to read:

		"Programs That Don't Meet Our Free-Software Standards

		 As significant amounts of software is distributed under
		 non-free licenses, in order to protect our users from
		 contamination, we will distribute monitoring tools that
		 will analyse non-packaged code and data on their system
		 and report suspected license violations to the sysadmin
		 and appropriate copyright holders."

	T -- remove non-free from the archive, social contract, etc

	D -- further discussion

The outcome's as above.


Anthony Towns <aj@humbug.org.au> <http://azure.humbug.org.au/~aj/>
I don't speak for anyone save myself. GPG signed mail preferred.

 ``If you don't do it now, you'll be one year older when you do.''

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