Günter Bechly : Open Letter to the KDE ProjectJun 06, 2000, 15:50 (19 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Günter Bechly)
[ Thanks to Günter Bechly for this announcement: ]
Dear KDE team,
Many discussions in the past have lead to nothing but frustration on both sides, because none of the involved parties was able to agree on a compromise.
It is possible that the licence issue could be partly resolved by Debian by the simple assumption that all KDE authors who have released their code under GPL have implicitly agreed to link their GPLed code to the QPLed Qt toolkit. However, Debian will not make this assumption, since it would weaken their stance on licence issues, and since it would also not resolve the conflict with third party GPLed code that was used by the KDE project.
Thus, there is only one realistic solution to the problem: All GPLed code in KDE2 has to include a licence that amends the GPL with the following exception clause: "This program is distributed under the GNU GPL v2, with the additional permission that it may be linked against all versions of Troll Tech's Qt library that are distributed under the QPL, and is distributed without the GPL applying to Qt".
Of course changing all licences accordingly and contacting all referring authors of the code involves a lot of boring work that is not very attractive for dedicated coders, which might be the reason that the KDE project did not perform this rather simple solution yet. Therefore, I would like to stipulate the appropriate actions by offering a private donation of 3.000,- US-$ to the KDE project, in case (and only in case) that the licence of the official release of KDE2 (all official packages incl. koffice) will be modified in the mentioned way, so that KDE2 can be included in Debian-Woody at last. The Debian project has already stated in the past that they would of course include KDE as soon as the licence conflicts are resolved. Since the Debian maintainer Ivan E. Moore II has already made inofficial Debian packages of KDE1.x and KDE2beta for the KDE Packaging Project at http://kde.tdyc.com, he could likely become the maintainer of the future official packages.
I hope that my offer could contribute to a prospering common future of KDE and Debian for the benefit of the Linux community.
It would be nice if I could receive something like an "official" answer by the KDE project concerning my offer. If KDE should agree, I will send a signed contract that guarantees that my donation will be immediately made as soon as KDE2 is released with the Debian compatible licence changes. It is up to the KDE project how my donation would be used; it could be used for any purpose of the KDE project, or even as a personal reward ("salary") for the referring KDE persons that will make the work of the licence changes.