Lionel Elie Mamane <firstname.lastname@example.org> writes:
> I have recently become the Debian package maintainer of scsh. I have
> already updated it to 0.6.4 and fixed some nasty packaging bugs, but
> in the course of checking if everything is OK, I have found some
> non-free copyright licenses in some files.
> I was kinda hoping that these were outdated licenses that should have
> been replaced by a reference to the top-level COPYING file during the
> relicensing that happened between 0.5.1 and 0.5.2, but I have to
> check. So, could someone please tell me with certainty whether the
> respective copyright owners of the following files did, back in
> 1997/1999, agree to a relicensing under the terms of the top-level
> COPYING file? If yes, could you please point me to evidence of it
> (emails of them, for example), so that I can show it to the relevant
> Debian authorities? Thank you very much.
I'm pretty sure such a relicensing did not happen. We could ask Olin,
but he won't answer. I'd be glad if somebody would take care of this
issue. I do not have the time to sort this out.
> If we cannot confirm that these non-free licenses are not in effect
> any more, scsh will have to be pulled out of Debian. Packages might
> still be distributed through the Debian mirror network, with a
> "non-free" shame mark, though.
> Here are the "problem files" we found:
> scsh-0.6.4/scheme/big/sort.scm :
> ;;; 2. Users of this software agree to make their best efforts (a) to return
> ;;; to the T Project at Yale any improvements or extensions that they make,
> ;;; so that these may be included in future releases; and (b) to inform
> ;;; the T Project of noteworthy uses of this software.
> ;;; 3. All materials developed as a consequence of the use of this software
> ;;; shall duly acknowledge such use, in accordance with the usual standards
> ;;; of acknowledging credit in academic research.
As far as I know, there is no longer a T project at yale so I guess we
would have to ask all the authors.
> srfi/srfi-13.scm and srfi-14.scm contain similar stuff, with the MIT
> scheme project instead of T Project at Yale.
How do other scheme implementations such as guile deal with this
issue? Did they reimplement the whole reference implementation of the SRFIs?
> infix/pratt.scm :
> ; * COPYRIGHT (c) 1988-1994 BY *
> ; * PARADIGM ASSOCIATES INCORPORATED, CAMBRIDGE, MASSACHUSETTS. *
> ; * ALL RIGHTS RESERVED *
> ;Permission to use, copy, modify, distribute and sell this software
> ;and its documentation for any purpose and without fee is hereby
> ;granted, provided that the above copyright notice appear in all copies
We would have to try to contact the author somehow.
> srfi/srfi-19.scm :
> ;; However, this document itself may not be modified in any way
> Urgh... This suggests one is totally forbidden to change this file!
> But I have some doubts that this is really the copyright notice of the
> SRFI implemented there, not of the implementation itself. But why is
> this copyright notice there, in the implementation?
Because it's the original reference implementation. However, the full
sentence you quoted is
;; However, this document itself may not be modified in any way, such as by
;; removing the copyright notice or references to the Scheme Request For
;; Implementation process or editors, except as needed for the purpose of
;; developing SRFIs in which case the procedures for copyrights defined in the
;; process must be followed, or as required to translate it into languages other
;; than English.
which I read as the usual "the copyright needs to remain intact".
Again, how do other scheme implementations deal with this?
> scsh/db.scm, dbm.scm and glob.scm :
> ;;; This code is freely available for use by anyone for any purpose,
> ;;; so long as you don't charge money for it,
Here the authors are Olin itself and David Albertz, one of his
students. I guess we could simply ask David whether he agrees to the
relicensing if we figure out his email address.