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Bug#388141: Ask contributors a permission to relicense

Le 09/01/2012 17:39, Francesco Poli a écrit :
> On Sun, 8 Jan 2012 23:17:02 +0100 Stefano Zacchiroli wrote:
>> On Sun, Jan 08, 2012 at 10:40:35PM +0100, Francesco Poli wrote:
>>> I think that this is exactly what people opposing to copyright
>>> assignment want to avoid: giving permission to re-license under yet
>>> unknown terms.
>> I don't think you should make absolute statements for *all* the people
>> opposing copyright assignments, while being yourself only one of them.
> I didn't intend to make *absolute* statements.
> I acknowledge that I should have written "what *some* people opposing",
> but unfortunately that "some" failed to come out of my keyboard...
> Sorry about that.
> Anyway, I am under the impression that the number of those "some
> people" is significant.
> [...]
>> I'm under the *impression* that an important amount of people objecting
>> copyright assignments do so to avoid the risk that their contributions
>> get re-licensed under terms that go against their moral beliefs about
>> software freedom. That is why I won't sign a copyright assignment to a
>> for-profit entity.

Instead of continuing our discussion based on impressions, we just
issued a quick poll [P.-S.]: it confirms that not everyone will agree
with a copyright reassignment, but almost all contributors will likely
give us a blanket permission to relicense their contributions under any
DFSG-free license.

Going this way (asking for a blanket permission to re-license under any
DFSG-free license) would allow us to work on this issue right now: no
need to wait for #238245 to be solved, the discussion about the chosen
license can continue while we address the “ask for relicensing
permission” task to every current contributor (addressing the current
and future side of this issue).

Since the “web team” is not a clearly defined entity, I propose, for
legal purpose, that the license choice stays ours but we mandate the
Debian project leader to publicly announce it once we have decided the
accurate license(s) (thus there is another safeguard: the “web team”
won't choose a silly license without a formal acknowledgement of the
Debian project by the voice of its leader).


Subject: Permission to relicense my work on the Debian website

  I hereby give permission to relicense my work — which consist of
  edition or translation of portions of text from one human language to
  another human language, that I have provided to the Debian website or
  that I will provide in the future — to any DFSG compatible license as
  chosen by the web team, and announced by the Debian project leader.


Once agreed on the wording, I propose to ask every contributors to send
us back this relicense permission (and ask them to forward this request
to every contributor they commit the work for, as it can be done in
translation teams for example).

Please note that Andrei found it “a bit harsh” [1] (well, it was about
copyright reassignment, since we will only ask for a relicensing
permission, maybe his remark won't stand) if we remove commit access to
people who won't give their agreement. Hopefully, none of us will really
disagree, and we'll only temporarily remove commit access to temporarily
unavailable contributors. Anyway, we'll report the result of the
relicensing campaign before taking action.

  1: http://lists.debian.org/debian-www/2012/01/msg00057.html



P.-S.: we contacted directly the 28 currently most active contributors
(we simply drawn this subjective line to people who did at least 50
commits in the past 2 years), and Alexander Reichle-Schmehl forwarded
this little poll [2] to people who committed to the publicity repository
(since he usually commits in behalf of the publicity and press teams).

Six days after the initial call, we already received 14 answers, and
thanks to Alexander initiative, 15 more answers five days after his call.

Only 20 persons would agree with a copyright reassignment.

28 persons (out of 29) would agree to give a blanket permission to the
Debian Web Team to relicense the Website under any DFSG free license
(only one person answered “maybe”, so it's not even a strong opposition).

  2: http://lists.debian.org/debian-publicity/2012/01/msg00042.html

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