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Re: Subject: Proposal - keep non-free, but commit to actively encouraging making individual packages obsolet

On Mon, Jan 12, 2004 at 02:52:54AM +0100, Michael Banck wrote:
> On Sun, Jan 11, 2004 at 07:14:14PM +0100, Sven Luther wrote:
> > +Still, we will actively encourage users of non-free software to migrate to
> > +free alternatives when they are available, and either encourage the upstream
> > +authors to modify their licence to a DFSG-free one and/or encourage the
> > +development of free alternatives to a point where they can replace the
> > +non-free software when they are not.
> I don't see why this should be necessary. I'd expect every DD who
> maintains a package in non-free to have done exactly this for years now,
> why should we put it into the Social Contract again (after saying that
> our priorities are Free Software [and our users])? 

The point is that this is a bit more than just providing non-free, in
this way the Debian project clearly state the temporary nature of (not
the non-free area but) the packages in the non-free archive, and we
engage ourselves to inform the user of non-free software about the state
of possible alternatives, make open and easily reachable the discussion
with upstream about licence changes, and orient developers to
development sites of free alternative. This could even be listed in the
help debian page or something.

This way, we reaffirm our commitment to free software, despite the
presence of non-free, and it is a step in the direction of those worried
over debian distributing non-free software, while i doubt the remove
non-free biggots will be moved by it.

> Another point to note is that adding five more lines to the fifth clause
> would make that non-free clause take up around 40% of the Social
> Contract. After reading it, that non-free bit might have settled in the
> mind of the casual user as a major point (as he read it at the end).

Ok, makes sense, but we can worry over cosmetical changes later on, and
i think we are going with Raul's proposal anyway.


Sven Luther

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