Re: non-free and users?
On Sun, Jan 18, 2004 at 05:05:37PM -0500, Anthony DeRobertis wrote:
> Apologies for the butchered attribution. Not sure what caused it, but I
> can't make sense of the attribution in Raul's post. I think the
> double-quoted text below is me, and I'm sure the single-quoted text is
Yes, that text you quoted is Raul [who is going to try to cut back on
posting for a while -- messing up quotes is a sure sign of carelesness,
even if nearly 200 posts from me this month isn't a sign of too much].
> >> I think he used XP as an example. Substitute in "X" if you prefer:
> >> If I don't have X, it will be ethical to reject a request to
> >> distribute X, since I do not have X.
> >> HTH.
> > Except that statement doesn't make sense in the context of the current
> > discussion for arbitrary X.
> I don't see why not.
> How about:
> If neither I nor my friends have X, it will be ethical to reject
> a request to distribute X, since we do not have X.
> If that's still a true statement, then why does changing 'neither I nor
> my friends' to 'Debian does not' change that?
There's at least two problem's here.
One is oversimplification [for example: "Sorry, I just deleted that
package a second ago, sorry, I can't give it to you" is very different
from "I don't have that package because it's never existed"].
Another is determinism. [for example, "I'm sorry, you can't download the
ADSL support package from the archive because nobody is allowed to put it
there" is very different "I'm sorry, you can't download the ADSL support
package from the archive because nobody has cared to put it there."]
In general, we do not distribute non-free packages because someone else
forbids us from doing so -- that's why we call it "non-free". However,
there are a few non-free packages which we are allowed to distribute --
if Debian forbids the distribution of those packages [in the context
of Debian], we're making the same mistake that the authors of the more
non-free packages are making.
It's true that, since we're not the authors of those packages, our mistake
doesn't have the same impact as when the author makes that mistake.
But it's still a mistake.
Thats' all I'm going to post till tomorrow -- have fun.