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Re: GR proposal: the AGPL does not meet the DFSG

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Bill Allombert <Bill.Allombert@math.u-bordeaux1.fr> wrote:
> - - - - - - -
> General Resolution made in accordance with Debian Constitution 4.1.5:
> The Debian project resolves that softwares licensed under the GNU Affero
> Public License are not free according to the Debian Free Software Guideline.
> - - - - - - -

I second the above Resolution, although I note it is missing the world
"General" before "Public".  My personal rationale is three-fold:

firstly, the uncertainty about whether we have to ensure availability
of the whole software or only our modifications (in other words,
whether our app should go offline if savannah, debian or whatever
upstream hosting service goes offline to our users) could be a
significant cost of use (this is broadly Bill Allombert's point 2.2);

secondly, the AGPL contradicts the freedom to distribute "when you
wish" which I always thought was a fundamental part of free software.
It has often been mentioned by RMS and others, in speeches such as
and some forced-publication licences (such as Reciprocal Public License)
have been listed on

finally, the AGPL is grounded in the self-contradicting idea of being
"specifically designed to ensure cooperation" as described in its
preamble (which also differs from the GNU GPL).  I believe cooperation
is necessarily voluntary (and I am not alone in that - see
http://www.ica.coop/coop/principles.html#1) and that "ensured
cooperation" is coercion, not freedom.  This is broadly in line with
debian's constitutional idea that "A person who does not want to do a
task which has been delegated or assigned to them does not need to do

I hope that others will support this debian and co-op view.

- -- 
My Opinion Only: see http://people.debian.org/~mjr/
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