Re: inserting gfdl
- From: Sanjoy Mahajan <sanjoy@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: 24 May 2006 01:43:59 +0100
why? most people make do with a standardised reference to a
published licence, and some of them include a copy rather than point
to a web site where the licence is available.
The GFDL has many provisions of doubtful value, such as requiring the
'executable' (e.g. printed copy) to contain the GFDL. Here is its
section 4(h): "Include an unaltered copy of this License." Which is a
bit miserable if you want to distribute one page from a GFDL work and
have to include 7 pages of GFDL text.
I understand why they require it: 50 years from now, there may be no
URL's or FSF to serve as the repository of the GFDL. But requiring
that the license text be present in the source code is close enough,
since the source is already required to be available (it's called the
Transparent form in the GFDL).
Then there are the issues of invariant sections and front- and
back-cover texts, plus careless drafting. From section 2: "You may
not use technical measures to obstruct or control the reading or
further copying of the copies you MAKE OR DISTRIBUTE [my emphasis]."
Which likely means that you cannot prevent people (e.g. with unix
protections) from reading copies you make on your own file system (the
"or" should have been "and").
To the original poster: Why not use the GPL? That works well as long
as you're not planning on distributing, or having downstream people
distribute printed copies. For printed copies with the GPL, you'd
have to distribute source in a physical media along with the hardcopy,
which is a pain; so you might want another license then (an issue I'm
thinking about a lot for my physics textbook).
`Never underestimate the evil of which men of power are capable.'
--Bertrand Russell, _War Crimes in Vietnam_, chapter 1.