Free Music License?

Jeroen Dekkers jeroen at
Wed Aug 17 14:41:37 UTC 2005

At Wed, 17 Aug 2005 15:56:53 +0200,
Alfred M. Szmidt wrote:
>    If they are not part of the main document, I should be able to
>    simply remove them. But that's not the case, the invariant sections
>    are a very strong part of the document. So strong that you can't
>    even remove them. It's even more important than other sections of
>    the documents, because those sections can just be removed.
> Is it the non-removal bit that you object to now, or is it the
> verbatim bit? Or both?  You keep jumping from one topic to another.

I was talking about modification. Removing a section is
modification. Changing text is also modification. So it's both well
within the topic.

But if you were able to remove the invariant sections, the problem
would go away for the biggest part: you can just remove all invariant
sections and get a free document.
>    So that they aren't part of the document is just nonsense.
> I didn't say that, I said the _main_ document.

So what is this main document? Do you normally start reading a book at
page 125 or so? I normally start at page 1, and all the pages are
considered part of the book by me. When I'm talking about a book, or a
document, I'm talking about the whole thing, not about some arbitrary
part of it.

>    It's like saying you can edit a whole program, except two source
>    files which do something different than the rest of the program.
> Now you changed the topic, once again.  Either we are talking about
> source code, or documentation.  We cannot speak about both, since they
> are different.  There is no point in not being allowed to change
> source code, hence why you should have the right to change it.

I suggest you pick a dictionary and search for the word
"analogy". Wikipedia might have some information about it too.

And why is there no point in not being allowed to modify source code
and is there a point in being disallowed to modify documentation?
> There is a perfectly valid reason in not changing a non-functional
> work, like my memoirs, or your toughts about how much you love
> butterflies.  You shouldn't be able to change what I or you thought
> about an issue.

What is this valid reason?
> There is also a perfectly valid reason in having invariant sections in
> a document, I might have written a document about how you twiddle
> frobs in a black box, and wish to give a note to everyone that my
> (non-existent) wife baked me cookies when I wrote the book and how
> much it helped me, and include a recipe for these cookies.  I also
> don't want to have someone modify the recipe to produce something
> horrible so that everyone will think that my wife can't cook.

So how is your non-existant wife baking cookies more important than my
> I also might want to make this note to my wife non-removable, since
> the book would not have been possible without her support.
> For documentation, all this makes sense, for source code it does not.

> One can agree that not being able to remove the invariant sections can
> be a bit troublesome if you have 1000 people who add such sections,
> each adding their own anecdote about how much they loved (or hated) my
> wife's cookies.

Yes. Certainly so when people are going to add religous and political
text. So what are the reasons for having all these potential
troublesome things?

> To me the GFDL has other problems, namely, it being a overall complex
> document, far to complex to be grasped in the same way that the GNU
> GPL can be grasped.  If the GFDL has invariant sections, or not, is
> frankly a side issue which everyone seems to miss.

No, because I think my freedom is more important than the complexity
of a document. If a license is complex but grants everybody enough
freedom, that is far smaller problem than if a license takes away
necessary freedoms.
>    There is just no reason to accept such a restriction.
> Just because you cannot see the need for such a `restriction' doesn't
> mean that there are good reasons to protect ones freedom to have it.

What are these good reasons? I still haven't heard this reason for
taking away my freedom.

Jeroen Dekkers

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