Defining Free Software Business

Yavor Doganov yavor at
Wed Jun 28 07:56:11 UTC 2006

On Tue, 27 Jun 2006 23:35:29 +0100, MJ Ray wrote:

> It can't be proved because it's not true, which is another reason
> that amendment shouldn't win.  Others use those options, such as

Thanks for these links, I wasn't aware of their existence.  I consider
this one as an abuse of the GFDL -- the invariant sections should
contain information that the author considers *important*.  In this
case the author thinks that he's very important, so I won't use his
manual.  A more serious flaw is the title "Secure programming for
Linux".  Obviously he thinks that Linux is an operating system, which
is a delusion.

> Some even abuse them to make the whole document uneditable, like

Another abuse of the GFDL.  Note that during the debate we (the
proponents of the "GFDL is free") pointed out several times that in
some cases manuals under this licence may be non-free -- if I include
a section about pornography, or drug abuse, for example.  In this
particular case some may consider the above manual free, some may not.
In a similar way, if I include patented algorithms in my GPL'ed
program, it won't be free in some countries.

> or even some GNU maintainers until debian developers noticed
> like

This is clearly a mistake which RMS has acknowledged.  The invariant
sections may be only "secondary".

> is interesting.  Another FDL-misuse repaired with debian's
> help in

This a most prominent abuse of the licence.

> Personally, I think FSF got extra-friendly treatment, with
> years spent trying to negotiate before that vote was taken.

This is an interesting view :-)

>> Debian just wanted to
>> do this anyway, it was not campaign for freedom -- otherwise you could
>> have started by removing the *really* non-free bits. 
> You may have noticed, we tried to do that before voting on FDL.

Not hard enough, unfortunately.

Look, let's not repeat the whole GFDL debate.  Fortunately only a few
people (the DDs that voted for it) have such perverted logic.  If you
think that the GNU Manifesto is adware, I can only say that there is a
huge precipice between us.  If you think that you can impose your (the
project's) view to other distributions to make that decision more
legitimate, it's not going to happen.  You have no idea how
ridiculous it looks -- a priest teaching us about the foundations of
Christianity while at the same time committing serial murders (yes,
for a Free Software activist, I consider distributing non-free
software the same as drug dealing or a crime of similar magnitude).

I'll still continue to licence my manuals under GNU FDL, a free
licence, acknowledged as free by the majority of the Free Community.

JID: doganov at

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