[Dev] Parabola stance on game assets

pribib pribib at bluehome.net
Fri Sep 28 02:02:47 GMT 2018

On 28/09/18 01:52, bill-auger wrote:
> all i can say is that there is no freedom bug report for 'openra' - this
> is the first i have heard of it - if it does what you say then it
> should probably be removed - do open that bug report and someone will
> look into it
I would love to make a bug report but it would also appear that even you 
yourself do not have a clear understanding of Parabola's free cultural 
rule. You state here that it is perfectly fine for such programs to 
exist within the repos because Parabola is not distributing them, yet 
now say it should probably be removed.

"parabola is not distributing them so there is probably no freedom issue 

Even if the stance on free cultural works has changed within the past 5 
months since that statement was made, there are still no clearly 
definitions anywhere.

> regarding "what parabola wants to" that was codified in the mission
> statement - i was not party to the discussion or voting that led to its
> terms but from what i see it was quite extensive - im quite sure that
> nothing was omitted due to lack of foresight - any glaring omission
> was probably intentional - in the end what you are really suggesting is
> to re-open the discussion to modify the "parabola social contract" -
> that's not a terrible idea but IMHO the thing i would want to change
> most is the title; because it can only realistically be no more than a
> "promise" to do our best - to that end, the body of it is pretty good
> already
The questions I have raised should not be considered to be suggestive of 
a particular viewpoint and are merely a result of my inability to find 
anything clearly stated so far. I am requesting some referable examples 
(using real packages like the ones mentioned) of the extent to which 
Parabola chooses to implement its endorsement of free cultural works 
only. The social contract links to https://freedomdefined.org/Definition 
and from what I can gather there does not appear to be anything on this 
page referencing endorsing the ability to import non-free artwork, this 
seems to be something certain developers Parabola have decided on its 
own based upon emulation of the FSDG.

I would think that if it were already clearly defined then it would be 
trivial to say, "OpenRA applies because of x, see link:... OpenMW does 
not apply because of y, see link:..." but this does not appear to be the 

> your suggestion is essentially to apply the full scope of the
> FSDG to all data files; not only to avoid distributing them but to
> avoid any mention or assistance finding and installing them - as i
> said, the implications of that go well beyond some game art - that would
> entail removing pip, rubygems, npm, docker and countless other such
> third-party package managers - i am not saying i am against that idea;
> but it is not to be taken so lightly as a removing handful of games
 From what I can understand that appears to be your suggestion, not 
mine. My discussion of drawing the line at FSDG emulation and applying 
it to all data files in an effort to avoid mention and assistance in 
finding them is based upon the opinion you stated here "i would draw the 
line between programs that actively index and/or lead you directly to 
non-free software or media and those that merely allow them to be used 
if users acquires them on their own"

Referring to the social contract might seem to be enough, but as is 
evident by the specific removal of the ability to import assets into 
OpenMW, there are certain developers within Parabola who are/have been 
drawing the line differently to the definition on that site and instead 
using FSDG.

At present we only have the opinion of bill-auger as a dev which is why 
I strongly urge other developers to make their opinions known as to 
where the line should be drawn.
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