[Sugar-devel] Full Licence field

David Malcolm dmalcolm at redhat.com
Wed Mar 18 16:44:10 EDT 2009

On Wed, 2009-03-18 at 16:00 -0400, Tom "spot" Callaway wrote:
> On 03/18/2009 03:45 PM, Kevin Kofler wrote:
> > Simon Schampijer wrote:
> >> Yes. So the main question is now if Fedora would be willing to ship
> >> general licenses under /usr/share/common-licenses, I think.
> I really don't want to do this. Here's why:
> A) Many copyright holders make minor modifications to the licensing
> terms. These modifications usually do not affect the rights granted by
> the license (which is why we do not mark them as distinct and individual
> licenses), but it would be incorrect to have these packages pointing to
> general license texts when those do not apply.
> B) Many licenses require that any distribution include the license text.
> Red Hat Legal was very uncomfortable with us using a rpm dependency to
> meet that requirement.
> What I do think we were looking at doing is having rpm mark %license
> texts in a unique way that is different from %doc. This would permit rpm
> --excludedocs but retain the license texts.
Thinking aloud, a couple of other approaches:
  (i) Embed the SHA256 checksum of each license into the path e.g.:
then have each file's identical implementation of those bytes overwrite
each other, and you might have many packages owning that path on the
installed system.  Slight modifications thus lead to different paths.

That way you still have duplicates in the .rpm files, but an installed
system has just one copy of each, and each rpm does indeed ship the
precise license it's required to.

I suspect that the arguments from crypto and from the legal side will
"pass through one another like angry ghosts", though (and legal thus

  (ii) Compress the licenses?

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