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Re: Boilerplate License Revision Proposal

On Sun, Jul 30, 2000 at 04:14:30PM -0700, David Lawyer wrote:
> >A major defect of the existing policy is the case where a document is
> >not maintained, but prohibits modification without permission of the
> >author.  We wind up with obsolete documents that sometimes can't be
> >updated.  I think (in theory) that we need to change our policy of
> >what we will accept and from now on not accept documents that can't be
> >modified if the author fails to maintain them to reflect new software
> >(and new hardware in some cases).

On Sun, Jul 30, 2000 at 07:25:31PM -0700, Poet/Joshua Drake wrote:
> This is not a defect as when the document becomes unmaintained and/or
> obsolete it need to be "re-written" anyway. Therefore there would be no
> copyright issues.

In some cases where it is totally obsolete, yes.  But in other cases
only a relatively small percent needs to be changed to bring it
up-to-date.  It's a lot more work to do it all over again from

> It is possible, if one has the means to create a publishable quality
> document. If it is truly publishable quality, the fact that it is on the
> Net, will not effect it. It may actually help the sales of a printed book.
I think that for documents that are about rapidly changing technology,
many people would rather get them by electronic means.  Print becomes
obsolete too fast.  I think it would ultimately hurt sales if it's in
a easy-to-use format.

> Personally I like electronic documentation, but I don't like it when I
> have to wade through a 500 page PDF.


> >Thus I don't think Poet's proposal would bring authors much financial
> >benefit and it would go against our principles of free documentation.
> I can refute this in several ways. One of the reasons some of the LDP
> authors do not make money at their documentation is that it is not very
> good.

True, but this supports my argument that it wouldn't bring much
financial benefit.

                        David Lawyer

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