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Re: [GNU-linux-libre] MAME

From: J.B. Nicholson
Subject: Re: [GNU-linux-libre] MAME
Date: Thu, 31 Mar 2016 11:01:47 -0500
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64; rv:38.0) Gecko/20100101 Icedove/38.7.0

Julian Marchant wrote:
As far as I know, all Flash objects are non-libre.

How do you figure this?

This is the error in your reasoning: even if it's true that there is no
libre software at all available for any of the systems MAME emulates,
that doesn't necessarily mean that MAME requires proprietary software to
work. From our perspective, that case is no different from if no
software at all existed for the systems. That would make MAME useless
today, but not unethical.

I don't see how that addresses the inducement criteria listed in the FSF's free distro guidelines and that isn't the situation with MAME. If the only software one can run with MAME is nonfree then a distro distributing MAME encourages the user to find that nonfree software. As far as I can tell from the two mentions of inducing the user to run nonfree software in the FSF's free distro guidelines (once in the licensing section, another in the firmware section) inducement to run nonfree software is important to avoid. This tells me MAME ought not be a part of an FSF-approved free distro. Users who want MAME will have a minor inconvenience of getting MAME another way.

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