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Re: [GNU-linux-libre] question about GNU FSDG compliance process

From: bill-auger
Subject: Re: [GNU-linux-libre] question about GNU FSDG compliance process
Date: Tue, 19 Feb 2019 17:53:44 -0500

Giovanni -

the first thing i would wat to say is that no one wants to refer to
that list as a "Software blacklist"

a blacklist implies that something is to be shunned, and permanently
so - the main point of that list is not only to point out programs that
have known problems, but more importantly to offer known recipes for how
they can be liberated and used in freedom - so, i prefer to call it a
"rescue" list; rather than giving it the "wall of shame" treatment
that the original title suggests - chromium is an unfortunate example
of one that has no known liberation procedure - no one wants it to
remain that way

regarding how mandatory it is, i think thats mostly up in the air for
the moment - only the FSF could clarify that authoritatively

what is clear though is that the current wording of the review process
prevents any new distro from passing beyond the community review stage
if it distributes chromium; so it is at least, effectively mandatory for
new incoming distros - i think we would all want to see all FSDG rules
applied equally to all FSDG distros, present and future - it is very
unsettling, embarrassing even, if distros contradict each other
regarding what is FSDG-free and what is not - i do think this is among
the highest priorities for the group, especially now that this potential
for conflict has been instantiated with an example

as for the list itself, it is actually relatively short today compared
to what it could be, and is not as well curated as it could be - it has
been discussed how it could be refined and expanded to be a prime
resource to anyone who wishes to customize one of those programs - if
done well, there no reason why it should not be mandatory IMHO; but it
would need to be well maintained, to ensure the warnings and
prescriptions for each program remain relevant and useful

the bottom line is that all this work is done by volunteers, including
the review of new distros - in order to do a better job or to do more,
more volunteers are needed to review software, discuss issues, and
document the results

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