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User-Agent: Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 6.0; Windows NT 5.0; .NET CLR
Description of problem:
rh8 comes without mp3, dvd, divx support, because of licensing issues.
it's possible to download the needed programs, however many users try rh8, but
then switch to other distro (usually mandrake). probably they don't know where
to download mp3 players, or they just don't understand why there isn't an mp3
or divx player in the three cds of the rh8 setup (users really don't care about
mp3 licensing issues).
while i agree with redhat about potential licensing issues i think you should
find a solution to this problem.
here's what i suggest:
after the setup is about to finish, on one of the last steps, you offer the
user to download additional multimedia players from a redhat site. you clearly
state that the programs are "unsupported", and warn the user about licensing
issues, and explain why redhat hasn't included these programs in the setup cds.
this way you avoid legal problems because the multimedia players aren't
included in the distro, and at the same time you give the users the option to
easily install these programs. please remember that newbies may know where to
download an mp3 player for windows, but usually don't know where to find one
for linux. this way you let the users know that such programs exists for linux
too, and that's easy to obtain them.
Version-Release number of selected component (if applicable):
Steps to Reproduce:
Priority == enhancement.
The philosophy behind this is "good" in intentions but poor with respect to what
you are describing. For example - this translates to:
We don't give a piece of software for free because the people who own it want
money for it. But, you can pick it up for free (even though the people who own
it, and the rights thereof, want money) at the following URL. Or, we can
provide the conduit by which you can install this software that is not free FOR
free in our distribution.
This is not a good idea. Mind you, Red Hat Linux is geared with professionalism
in mind - open-source is their target in the distribution sector. It is nice,
to me, for instance to know that Red Hat stands out from the crowd on the stance
that "open source is the way to go". Source code released under licenses which
accrue restrictions (i.e. monetary, availability, etc.) is what Red Hat has
seemingly tried to move away from. Newbies alike can simply search on the web
for alternatives to adding "multimedia" support without the backing of a
corporate sponsor (ever perused comp.os.linux.misc?)
Adhering to the law and to the spirit of the law is a good pat on the back to
Red Hat, IMHO.
No. Sending people to potentially untrusted third-party sites for software is a
Really Bad Idea(tm).