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Re: Adding advisory notification for non-ELPA package.el downloads

From: Paul Rankin
Subject: Re: Adding advisory notification for non-ELPA package.el downloads
Date: Thu, 20 Jul 2017 22:29:28 +1000

> The goal here is to avoid having packages end up in the situation
> Magit is in now.

I think there has already been plenty of discussion of your
characterisation of Magit as a bad situation as being off-base.

> They get into that situation because developers accept contributions
> without thinking of legal papers.  They get contributions from one
> person, then another, then another 50 people, then another 50.
> The way to avoid this is by showing people what the situation is like
> and how they can avoid it.  We need to educate the whole Emacs Lisp
> development community.

All of this is based on the assumption that people *want* to assign
their copyright to FSF. This is not the case. I develop a couple of
packages and I would never assign my copyright. Copyright isn't just
some legal nuisance, to many people it's something pretty sacred. It's a
stamp that says "I made this, I contributed this to the world." The
notion that I should be "reminded" or "educated" that in developing
Emacs packages that my goal should be to assign my copyright to FSF is
beyond insulting.

>From my perspective, the only situation that needs attention is the
FSF's position that any code with any real value should be assigned to
the FSF, and that everyone who doesn't do this is making problems.

> Here's an idea that might be better targeted.
> The idea is to display a notice when the user edits a file in Emacs
> Lisp mode (other than .emacs).  The code could avoid displaying the
> notice more than once per week -- using a timestamp for the last time
> it was displayed.
> To avoid these problems is important.  By comparison, this occasional
> small annoyance is a small matter.

These are only problems from the FSF's perspective. Most other people
don't care, so your plan would just annoy people.

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