Non-free programs

The request below was received from RMS and I would like to act upon it.
How to act should be determined by the GNOME Foundation, so I am
requesting that the Foundation take an official stance regarding the
promotion of non-Free software in places like the Software Map, GNOME
Summaries, and Gnotices.

I know this is a difficult decision to make, but judging from the weekly
Foundation meeting minutes, it appears that GNOME's stance with regards
to the FSF have already been in discussion.

My opinion is that the GNOME libraries were LGPL'ed for a reason, yet
visitors to the domain should be made very clear which
software is not Free Software. Therefore, I propose that when we
reference non-Free software on the domain, we append a
parenthesized phrase such as "This is not Free Software" after the
reference. I would be willing to implement this for the GNOME Software
Map so that it is done automatically, but Gnotices and GNOME Summary
story authors would need to be aware of this policy.

Please help me reach a consensus on this issue. Thanks.

-----Forwarded Message-----

> From: Richard Stallman <rms gnu org>
> To: webmaster gnome org
> Cc: gleblanc linuxweasel com
> Subject: Re: Non-free programs
> Date: 03 Jun 2002 05:41:42 -0600
> The ggobi license has several unacceptable restrictions.  It turns out
> that other programs from AT&T use variants of the same license, so we
> now list the AT&T Public License in license-list.html as a
> non-free-software license.
> I recently spoke with the developer of graphviz (another AT&T program
> using this license) about the same issue, and from what he said, it
> seems that the AT&T lawyers are not going to agree to any free
> software license.  It seems unlikely that I would get anywhere with
> changing the license of ggobi either, but I'm willing to try if
> you tell me his email address.
> In the mean time, would you please remove ggobi from the GNOME
> software catalogue?  The presence of a non-free program in that
> catalogue is a serious problem: it recommends the non-free program,
> and that grants legitimacy to the use of a non-free program.
> After talking with the developer of ggobi, if I don't succeed in
> convincing them to change the license, I will make a special effort to
> recruit people to develop a free replacement for ggobi.  All I know
> about it is that it is a "data visualization program".  Could you send
> me a paragraph or two that describes the job it does?

Steve Fox

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