Debian Documentation Policy (DEPRECATED and OLD DRAFT)


Note that there is currently disagreement regarding whether or not documentation can be asked to be free in the DFSG sense. Arguably, the DFSG does not really apply to documentation since they are free software guidelines. Some other people think there is not really any distinction between documentation and software. The debate on this have not finished yet but it may be worthwhile reading the thread at debian-legal Proposed: Debian's Five Freedoms for Free Works.


For more information refer to this thread on the debian-doc mailing list.


This has been an issue discussed many times on the debian-legal and debian-doc mailing list. Relevant discussions (sorted chronologically, updated as of September 2003) include:


There is a workgroup to try to make the license version 3.0 compatible with the DFSG, as reported in debian-legal.


Some people think that some sections, such as IV.2, IV.4 and IV.5 might be too restrictive, and IV.3 might be more specific than needed. However, this license was discussed in the debian-legal mailing list in october 2001, january 2000, and november 1999 (old draft discussion).


The reasons for using of debiandoc-sgml is, among others, historical. When the DDP started producing documentation for Debian there was no SGML DTD that fit the needs of the documentation team. Linuxdoc-sgml, the DTD used by the Linux Documentation Project at the time, lacked some features, and the documentation team decided to create it's own DTD.


This has also been chosen by The Linux Documentation Project as its main format as described in the LDP Author Guide.


Note that there currently is no stylesheet made by the DDP to build documents in the right way (tm). Volunteers for this task should contact the debian-doc mailing list.


Which will unfortunately include usually also a lot of spam due to his name being published in many places and making it a target for mail harvesters :-(


This makes it easier for the maintainer to apply the patch in case the document has changes a lot since the reader read it and reported the bug with a patch. Many documents are moving targets and might change quite a lot from one reader to another

Debian Documentation Policy (DEPRECATED and OLD DRAFT)

CVS, Sun, 06 Feb 2011 16:44:38 +0000

Debian Documentation Project
Authors, Section A.1