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Re: Critique of draft GNU Free Documentation License v1.0
- Subject: Re: Critique of draft GNU Free Documentation License v1.0
- From: Kim Lester <>
- Date: Wed, 12 Jan 2000 12:15:40 +0000
- Organization: Datafusion Systems Pty Ltd
- Resent-Cc: recipient list not shown: ;
- Resent-Date: 12 Jan 2000 12:17:56 -0000
- Resent-Message-ID: <RvXQND.A.WiG.zDHf4@murphy>
This is outside my domain and perhaps I should just keep quiet but...
The more rules and requirements that must be adhered to comply
with a "free/open" etc document license the less appealing and
useful it is.
With specific regards to the proposed clauses for derivation of
works I have these comments:
Placing the burden of contact on someone trying to derive a work
from a "free" published text makes it just too hard. People
change email addresses/move states/countries etc. Some don't have
access to email. This rule hobbles those who might most benefit
from using the documents. Impractical clauses are worse than
(And of course there are those who would ignore such requirements
anyway because they were too hard and copy/edit anyway)
My suggestion (and I admit I'm not a lawyer, just practical) would
be to specify that each document require the author and every
subsequent editor to be listed (name, date, possibly email, and a
one line summary of changes and/or % changed)
That way the pedigree of a doucument is kept. The original author
receives the credit for creating it. At the same time the list of
editors shows that the document may have undergone significant
changes which might be attributable to any of those listed.
Most editors would be eager to add their name to the
edited-by list on the document rather than avoid it so the pedigree
would remain far more accurate than other legal requirements.
[From LDP-DISCUSS group]
> > IMHO it should be a requirement for someone to notify me if they
> > want to modify and distribute my document.
> I'm definitely against that requirement, and I already explained why
> on this list. I'll repeat.
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