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Re: Another Non-Free Proposal

On Fri, Jan 09, 2004 at 11:58:46AM +1000, Anthony Towns wrote:
> On Thu, Jan 08, 2004 at 09:53:37AM -0600, John Goerzen wrote:
> > I don't expect anyone to want to set up a non-free archive until a
> > decision is reached to remove non-free.  Doing so would go a long way to
> > proving it is possible, and thus towards defeating their own preference.
> Huh? Why do you think the only people able to setup a non-free archive
> are ones that want to see it kept in Debian?

It's not a question of ability; it's a question of willingness.
Volunteers tend to work on things they're actually interested in.

> And if you think that "doing so would go a long way" toward getting
> non-free *out* of Debian, why don't *you* do it? Set it up, make sure
> it works, maintain it for a few months, then pass it on to people who
> care about it.

> Personally, I don't understand how people can, on the one hand, suggest
> nonfree.org as a reasonable way of helping our users, and on the other
> hand refuse to work on it claiming such behaviour would be unethical,

You appear to be putting words into people's mouths.  There are many
possible explanations why they wouldn't to work on it, the most likely
one to my mind being the primary dynamic of volunteer work.

"For the greater good" arguments can only do so much to compel people to
work on things that don't directly interest them.  For example,
experience would seem to tell us that resolving release-critical bugs
across the entire distribution isn't the sort of task that a large
number of our developers find innately fun, else we wouldn't hear
repeated and strident pleas for our Release Manager to work on that task
instead of others.

> even though it supports the arguments they're making and would aid in
> a goal they seem to think is desirable.

Likewise, the people who oppose the proposed GR are quite likely not to
do so, because it undermines the arguments they're making, and would aid
in a goal they don't think is desirable.

The setup of such a thing thus asks one group to overcome its
indifference, another to overcome its fear, and both to be more
altruistic than we might reasonably expect.

This seems to be like exactly the sort of difficult case that is best
handled with a General Resolution, and far from being a "whimsical"
issue, as Manoj has belittled it[1].

[1] http://lists.debian.org/debian-vote/2004/debian-vote-200401/msg00142.html

G. Branden Robinson                |    I just wanted to see what it looked
Debian GNU/Linux                   |    like in a spotlight.
branden@debian.org                 |    -- Jim Morrison
http://people.debian.org/~branden/ |

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