[karl@tug.org: tex live status]

Karl Berry karl@cs.umb.edu
Sun, 28 Mar 1999 15:29:56 -0500 (EST)

Date: Sun, 28 Mar 1999 15:05:40 -0500
From: karl@tug.org
To: tex-live@tug.org
Subject: tex live status

I've added myself to the tex live alias and read through the mail archive.

For the copyright, I see no alternative at this point to simply
disallowing for-profit copying, does anyone disagree?  I believe
not-for-profit copying is ok, isn't it?  Are there any known problems
besides the packages with no copyright notice at all?  (They make it
technically illegal, but we never worried about them in previous years
so I don't propose to start now.)

I see this:

    Some of the software requires that, if it is packaged with other
    publications, like books or journals, those things be freely

What software is this?  This seems extremely dubious, legally.  In GPL
terms, it's `mere aggregation'.

I think the copyright file should be named LICENSE or maybe LICENSE.TL4.

Sebastian, for TeX Live as a whole, do you wish to forbid people from
making a tar file of the CD image and putting it up for ftp?  Or put any
other conditions in it?

I see Art had a draft of the putative LICENSE file in the form of a
flyer to be sent to be sent to the lugs.  I had trouble understanding
it, so here is my proposal for what to put on the CD.

- I'm not sure if we should mention the catalogue?

- Kaja, I think we should link to the debian software and recommend free
  software in general on the tug web site somewhere.  Wdyt?

- Kaja, do you have time to reconcile tex-live.html with
  texlive/index.html?  I think they should be the same (the former
  should point to the latter), and probably updates are needed.

- Sebastian, I don't know if you want your name on this :).

- (the biggie) I don't know if it's really allowed to charge a nominal
  fee for redistribution of the CD.  (In fact, I don't think it is,
  technically.)  But since we've done it for three years without any
  repercussions, let's do it again.  Since *TUG* is charging a nominal
  fee, I think we must allow other organizations to do so also.  TUG
  does not have any special rights in regards to the stuff.

Copying conditions for TeX Live 4

You may copy, modify, or redistribute software from this CD only if you
comply with the requirements placed thereon by the owners of the
respective software packages.  To learn these requirements, you must
read the conditions for each individual package you wish to copy,
modify, or redistribute.  In general, there is no other way.  Sorry.

If you plan on redistributing the entire CD contents, you must not do so
for profit, as many of the packages here forbid that.  You are allowed
to charge only a (very) nominal fee, enough to recover your
administrative and media costs, no more.  And it is vastly preferable to
not charge at all, but simply make the CD a benefit of membership in
your organization (or the equivalent, such as for university departments).


We hope these conditions will be relaxed in future editions of TeX Live.
If you are a package author, you can help with this by ensuring your
copying conditions meet certain guidelines.  The Debian Free Software
Guidelines are the most coherent statement of these we have read; please
see http://www.debian.org/social_contract#guidelines.

It is usually best to use an existing license, such as the LaTeX Project
Public License, the GNU Public License, the GNU Library Public License,
the X Window System license, etc.  Please see
http://www.debian.org/intro/free for more discussion of this.


If you have any questions or comments, we urge you to contact us by
email at tex-live@tug.org.  We also maintain web pages about TeX live at

Thanks for your interest in TeX.

- Sebastian Rahtz, editor, for the TeX Live team