Subject: Re: want ms-ttf package on FTP
To: Jeremy C. Reed <firstname.lastname@example.org>
From: Greg Troxel <email@example.com>
Date: 04/12/2007 09:26:07
"Jeremy C. Reed" <firstname.lastname@example.org> writes:
> Please see the ms-ttf thread on tech-pkg in December 2004.
I did, but note that the langauge in the pkgsrc guide about what these
variables mean has been considerably tightened up since then.
I am boggled that Debian includes this package (presumably you meant in
main). It's not even close to Free.
> Some want ms-ttf package to be allowed on FTP for downloads.
Sure, everyone would like binary packages of everything, but TNF has to
follow copyright law.
> The license indicates that you can't modify the fonts. I don't see this a=
> a limitation to making it available especially since we don't already als=
> set NO_SRC_ON_FTP. So I want to remove NO_BIN_ON_FTP.
When having these sorts of conversations, it's important to have them in
terms of what licenses do permit. We're basically talking about
copyright law (US and Berne convention countries, which I believe is
most), so actions that are rights reserved to the copyright holder
(copying, creating derivative works) can be taken either under fair use,
or with permission of the copyright holder. I expect that you
understand this, but there's widespread confusion on this point out
Of course, licenses that say "you can do X, but only if not Y" end up
being a mix. My point is that it's important to keep in mind from where
we are starting.
What it actually says is:
1 * Reproduction and Distribution. You may reproduce and distribute an=
unlimited number of copies of the SOFTWARE PRODUCT; provided that=
each copy shall be a true and complete copy, including all=20=20=
copyright and trademark notices, and shall be accompanied by a cop=
of this EULA.=20=20=20=20=20=20=20=20=20=20=20=20=20=20=20=20=20=
2 * Restrictions on Alteration. You may not rename, edit or create any=
derivative works from the SOFTWARE PRODUCT, other than subsetting=
when embedding them in documents.=20=20=20=20=20=20=20=20=20=20=20=
So, it's a legal question (one I'm not competent to answer) of whether
unpacking the ttf files from the exe and making a tarball is a "true and
complete copy". On one hand, our repackaging could be argued to be
renaming and a derivative work. On the other, it's the minimal
transform intended to present exactly the same files with the same
content in the user's filesystem.
IANAL, and therefore I can't "approve" you removing NO_BIN_ON_FTP, but I
won't object if you do it.
> The license indicates you can't sell the fonts as part of another product=
> Since we have know that some CDs are sold, maybe this should continue to=
> use NO_BIN_ON_CDROM and NO_SRC_ON_CDROM.
The distinction between NO_*_ON_FTP and NO_*_ON_CDROM is exactly 'made
available at no charge' and 'made available, probably as part of a
collection, for a fee'. This is artificial -- there could of course be
paid FTP and free CDROMs -- but it's meant to encode the normal case.
In this case, the end of clause 1:
Copies of the SOFTWARE PRODUCT may not be distributed for
profit either on a standalone basis or included as part of your
is pretty clear, as a narrowing of permission to copy, so CDROM is right
> The pkgsrc Guide says if you use that, then RESTRICTED should be set too.
> But pkglint said "Restricted packages must have a LICENSE." But that mean=
> I must add it to ACCEPTABLE_LICENSES. According to the docs, this seems=20
> wrong since the LICENSE is for copyright issues and not redistribution=20
> issues. This is confusing. I want to remove the LICENSE (but I will still=
> install the license file).
I don't follow - redistribution issues are almost entirely copyright
issues, except where they are about patents, which this isn't.
The basic rule for LICENSE is that a package must have LICENSE set
unless the pacakges's license meets either the "Open Source" (OSI) or
"Free" (FSF) test. Clearly, this license meets neither.
If a license meets either the Open Source or Free test, then one could
make source and binaries available, even for a fee. This is the reason
behind the "if restricted, then needs license" - it's just the
contrapositive of "if no license, then must be unrestricted".
> Again, we don't already set NO_SRC_ON_FTP and I want to remove the=20
> NO_BIN_ON_FTP and LICENSE restrictions.
> Is this okay?
It's not ok to remove LICENSE because the license fails to meet the
There's a larger question, which is if the pkgsrc rules should be
different. My opinion is:
the NO_*_ON_* basically encode the edge of copyright law and there's
no good reason to change the definitions (although the documentation
of that may well need improving).
The LICENSE=3D rule is a sensible policy choice for pkgsrc. It allows
those using NetBSD -- and those building systems to sell -- to avoid
using non-Free software unless they make and express a conscious
If you want to propose changing the rules, then please do so (on
tech-pkg probably) separately, since that's about much more than this
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