[tex-live] TeX Live 2011 License Audit - Non Free Items [01/02]

Karl Berry karl at freefriends.org
Sat Dec 17 01:15:56 CET 2011

Hi Tom,

Re floatflt.

    The real problem is that the license is poorly written, because while it
    could be interpreted the way you suggest, it states:

    "You may not make any changes to the files floatflt.dtx or floatflt.ins."

It seems very bizarre to me to take one sentence out of context, clearly
contrary to the authors' intent, and declare that it makes the license
nonfree.  Since your lawyers have rendered their opinion, I guess you
will or have removed it from Fedora, but I don't accept it as a valid
argument, so this will have to remain a discrepancy between us for now.

Of course, it would be much better if floatflt used the LPPL (or any
other known-ok license for that matter).  I have never had any luck
contacting the author, having tried a few times over the years.  If
anyone else would like to give it a try, please do.

(Robin: merely being prohibited from editing a file "in place" is
clearly not grounds for being non-free, since that's the story with
plain.tex, hyphen.tex, etc.  Hence my recommendation to you that it be
labeled other-free.)

More on other items another time.


More information about the tex-live mailing list