Re: Draft vote on constitutional issues
Thomas Bushnell BSG wrote:
On Wed, 2009-05-13 at 10:53 +0200, Giacomo A. Catenazzi wrote:
DFSG is a guideline and a target: we must no go far as the nearest point
we reached, but it still a guideline.
- we never had a full DFSG Debian (also when DFSG was written)
- we have "RC" also on stable releases. What should we do in such cases?
Block all dDbian website, all mirrors, etc. because it is clearly against
our foundations? No.
The Social Contract does not leave vague how we use the DFSG. It could
say that we take the DFSG as a guideline, or as a target, but it does
"We provide the guidelines that we use to determine (...)"
DFSG is that guideline. "Guideline" indicates direction.
(note that it is in the sentence, not as acronym)
"We promise (...) will be free". *will* indicate a future intention.
we must not add more non-free software (but by errors), and we should
try to remove non-free (the target).
It does not say that we try to abide by it, or that we weigh it
against other things; it says that we *do* abide by it, 100%. I wonder,
how could it be written even more strongly?
So, I think the actual social contract is not so strong.
"Debian releases only distributions that contain only softwares, documentations
and art-works that is free according to DFSG" would be stronger.
But it is very dangerous to have to strict rules:
if we found a non-free software (outside the exceptions) in potato o in lenny,
do we annihilate because we don't follow the guidelines?
As you wrote, there will always bugs, and also wrong attributed code,
unchecked licenses, ...; so I would not like to have a stronger statement.
I have the feeling that if
it said "we will never intentionally include non-free software in
Debian, no matter what the circumstances" you would still start telling
us that this is a mere statement of goals and intentions, but not
anything actually binding.
Of *course* there will be bugs. We cannot promise not to make mistakes.
The argument is *not* about whether non-free things get in
unintentionally. We can't make a promise never to make a mistake. But
we can promise not to intentionally include non-free software, and it is
this promise which we have now broken twice.
We I joined debian, I read that we (DD) was never obliged to do things
(but with a kind request to retire gracefully if we cannot
improve debian). But I don't find anymore such document.
I cannot work on Debian kernel: I've no time and capabilities, so
I cannot help reducing such non-free code, but I'm helping in
So what we should do?
Never release, because we have no man-power on some complex tasks?
But so we throw the other works, where we removed non-free software,
and improved freedom.
I try to do most as I can do, to have a 100% free Debian,
on my packages, and on other packages, but you are telling me
that I go to every RC bug and try harder to resolve bugs?
[I can do it, but I'm sure it is a waste of time]