[aur-general] sancho-gtk removal from [community]: discussion thread

Alessio Bolognino themolok.ml at gmail.com
Tue Jul 15 15:39:00 EDT 2008

On Tue 2008-07-15 21:09, bardo wrote:
> Hi fellow TUs, devs and archers!
> I'm writing this long e-mail to discuss the current situation about
> sancho-gtk, a [community] package I'm maintaining.
> I inherited sancho-gtk, a front-end for mldonkey, when mOLOk resigned
> from his TU position, and some time ago I checked if everything was ok
> with it. In the PKGBUILD I found an ugly hack to download the
> software, which is hosted on Sourceforge but isn't available at the
> traditional download location. It is rather distributed through a
> direct link in its homepage (http://sancho-gui.sourceforge.net/), but
> that link changes every few minutes: because of this came the ugly
> hack. The whole thing, I discovered, was done on purpose by its
> author, whom I contacted for explainations.
> He pointed out that the download page page states "no
> redist/pkging/mirrors pls". I don't like forwarding private e-mails,
> so here's a summary of what I found out and some of my assumptions.
>  * The author doesn't like his software to be repackaged because he
> doesn't want users complaining upstream for distribution-level bugs.
>  * He doesn't really care if his user base drops to near-zero because
> his software isn't easily available and integrated in linux
> distributions.
>  * I wasn't able to find the application's source code (the GTK
> version, at least) on his site, so I assume it is a closed source app.
> When the author was asked to clarify his position, include a license
> and, in case of a free one, the corresponding source code, he didn't
> answer.
>  * The author thinks software inclusion in a linux distro is "opt-in"
> (his words), and states he never asked for it. When I pointed out that
> free software has nothing to do with opt-in, he stopped answering my
> e-mails.
>  * The author never clearly stated (even though I asked) if we are
> infringing any license by redistributing the software.
>  * An important phrase I think i just have to report is "I don't think
> a license has ever written any software", referring to his preference
> of distributing his software only through the homepage.
> I want to drop this software from our repos. Not because he asked for
> it, but because it looks like this person doesn't really understand
> what free software and a community are, and that we are persons, too,
> with our rights. He's not the kind of person I want to deal with. I
> also think he is in violation of Sourceforge terms, since he's
> maintaining what looks like proprietary software on their servers.
> What do you think about the whole thing?
> I already decided to drop both sancho-gtk and mldonkey (its
> development seems to be stalled), but there are more questions. Should
> I notify him to Sourceforge in case he is infringing? Should I drop
> the package to [unsupported]? Should I delete it? Should I hand it to
> another maintainer?
> I wouldn't want to see another ion3, but I don't think it's very
> different. Should we try to define special policies for cases like
> these?

As Corrado stated, I was the former maintainer; I'm quite sure
sancho-gui *was* licensed under GPL, that's why I moved it [community].
I never understood why the author was trying to make difficult for third
party to package his software, but since it was licensed under GPL, I
pretty much didn't bother to ask explanations.
Since the author explicitly said he doesn't want people packaging his
software, I would drop it and inform SourceForge.

MLDonkey on the other hand seems to be still developed:
maybe some other TU could adopt it.


Alessio (molok) Bolognino

Please send personal email to themolok at gmail.com
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