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Re: Bug#380128: info: Incorrect (?) (unclear) copyright statement

From: Helge Kreutzmann
Subject: Re: Bug#380128: info: Incorrect (?) (unclear) copyright statement
Date: Tue, 8 Aug 2006 20:37:19 +0200
User-agent: Mutt/1.5.9i

On Tue, Aug 08, 2006 at 12:55:49PM -0500, Karl Berry wrote:
>     > Also here the "version 2 or (at your option) any later version" is
>     > missing. Thats what caused me to open this bug: both the man page *and*
>     > the program claim only GPL (which implies version 1).
> I'm not sure if making that inference is 100% necessary :).

Especially in the context of the new GPL I think more and more people
will look at the version of the GPL (e.g. think about the Linux
kernel). And it is unclear for me that a pure "GPL" refers to version

> The thing is, that text for --version comes straight from the GNU coding
> standards.  I wouldn't want to change it without consulting rms (and
> changing standards.texi).  Sigh.  Is it worth it?

This is up to Debian to decide how to treat this ambiguity. I
personally would prefer the programm to be precise, i.e. knowing the
license without downloading the source. For Debian, the inclusion of
COPYING (or a clear reference to the Debian version of it, i.e. the
already shipped GPL) could be a workaround for the moment, together
with debian/copyright this would clear the issue. But Debian might
also decide that *only* debian/copyright is relevant to the end user,
then this bug would become wishlist from my side.

> By the way, virtually every GNU package seems to do --version a slightly
> different way, and I haven't found any that explicitly say GPL v2; many
> don't even mention the GPL at all.  I expect the situation is even more
> chaotic for non-GNU packages.  So changing Texinfo is just the tip of
> the iceberg ...

Then this topic should be discussed in an appropriate form at some
time, so that a consensus can be found how to treat this problem (both
in upstream as well as within Debian).

Thanks for your analysis.


      Dr. Helge Kreutzmann                     address@hidden
           Dipl.-Phys.                   http://www.helgefjell.de/debian.php
        64bit GNU powered                     gpg signed mail preferred
           Help keep free software "libre": http://www.ffii.de/

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