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Re: Summary? (Or: my vote is for sale!)

On Mon, 02 Oct 2006, Kevin B. McCarty wrote:
> Regarding the specific ballot on 2006/004, can anyone tell me how
> passing it would change ANYTHING of import, other than annoying one
> of the RMs [1]? Points B and D are "recommends" and "requests" so
> aside from Debian taking a public stand on the issue, they are
> no-ops. Point C is already in the social contract. The statement
> made in Point A has been the case ever since GR 2004/003 changed the
> social contract from covering "software" to "works" (indeed, this is
> recognized in the ballot by calling point A a RE-affirmation).

The entire point of that proposal is to clarify what DFSG §2 says so
that it is clear what our goals are in regards to source code for
things that we distribute. It does not establish exceptions for etch
or anything else, because exceptions were out of scope of the original
proposal that it was an amendment of.[1]

> By shipping sourceless firmware in main, we are either already
> violating the social contract or we are not. (My money is on the
> former, but that's irrelevant to my point.) In either case, as
> stated above the entire GR is a no-op. And if we are already
> violating the social contract, why would passing a GR against this
> practice make us stop doing so?

I had always understood DFSG §2 to be read in exactly the way the
proposal clarifies its meaning. However, the original proposal made it
clear to me that this was not a universal understanding, and it fell
to me (or someone else) to draft language to offer another
interpretation of our understanding of DFSG §2. If you agree with the
proposal being a no-op (that is, it says what you felt DFSG §2 always
said), then you are in agreement with the entire point of the

Finally, as far as etch is concerned, it is my understanding that we
MUST pass an exception to DFSG §2 in order to do what we are currently
doing; this proposal just makes it abundantly clear that that is the

Don Armstrong

1: Amendments to proposals have to be drafted such that they deal with
the narrow range of issues raised by the original proposal; the
failure to do this properly (and specifically amend a proposal) is one
of the reasons why the ballot for the etch exception is still unclear.
Hopefully some of the proposals will combine themselves or ammend
themselves to include verbatim the text of other proposals that they
find superior.
CNN/Reuters: News reports have filtered out early this morning that US
forces have swooped on an Iraqi Primary School and detained 6th Grade 
teacher Mohammed Al-Hazar. Sources indicate that, when arrested,
Al-Hazar was in possession of a ruler, a protractor, a set square and
a calculator. US President George W Bush argued that this was clear
and overwhelming evidence that Iraq indeed possessed weapons of maths 

http://www.donarmstrong.com              http://rzlab.ucr.edu

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