This result means that the Debian Lenny release can proceed as the release team has intended, with the kernel packages currently in the archive.
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I've been reminded that as Acting Secretary I should officially announce the
results of the recent vote. My apologies for the delay!
Details of the outcome and how various options were voted are available at
The winning option was number 5, “Assume blobs comply with GPL unless proven
otherwise”, the full text of which is appended below.
Since the election concluded, several developers have asked for some statement
from the DPL and/or Secretary as to what this result really means. Steve and
I have discussed it, and we think it's pretty clear. This result means that
the Debian Lenny release can proceed as the release team has intended, with
the kernel packages currently in the archive.
Assume blobs comply with GPL unless proven otherwise
1. We affirm that our Priorities are our users and the free software
community (Social Contract #4);
2. We acknowledge that there is a lot of progress in the kernel firmware
issue; most of the issues that were outstanding at the time of the
last stable release have been sorted out. However, new issues in the
kernel sources have cropped up fairly recently, and these new issues
have not yet been addressed;
3. We assure the community that there will be no regressions in the
progress made for freedom in the kernel distributed by Debian relative
to the Etch release in Lenny (to the best of our knowledge as of 1
4. We give priority to the timely release of Lenny over sorting every
bit out; for this reason, we will treat removal of sourceless firmware
as a best-effort process, and deliver firmware as part of Debian Lenny
as long as we are legally allowed to do so, and the firmware is
distributed upstream under a license that complies with the DFSG.
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