[Scribus] font management

Craig Ringer craig
Sun Apr 17 20:39:30 CEST 2005

On Sun, 2005-04-17 at 14:41 -0400, Marvin Dickens wrote:

> Unless the document is a text document (ie yourdoc.txt), the font is
> embedded into the document and is part of the document.

I'm not sure that's really true - most documents simply reference the
font, and can in fact have the font reference changed at will. It is
true that PDF documents typically embed a font though, as do DVI and
PostScript ... but really it's mostly result formats, not document

Of course, since it's the output formats that the document is created
for, and the same ideas about "referencing" apply as to the use of
libraries and headers, it doesn't really matter.

> Much like stdio.h (A common header file in C) is used in c source files and therefore,
> the resulting binary. Because the gpl is viral in it's design (which is a good 
> thing),

Well, it's a good thing if that's what the author intended. For
software, if the author wants that effect, then delivering it is good.
for a font ... how many people who release fonts under the GPL will
realise that this will be an effect of their license choice? I doubt
it'll be all or even most of them. Now, personally I think they should
probably find a license that's better suited to fonts, not use a
software license, but it's still not necessarily a flat-out good thing.

> This *exact* issue also plagues the gEDA project (Electronic design). The
> use of gpl'ed symbols and footprints makes any electronic design that uses
> them subject to the gpl. So, in this case, users of gEDA design and share
> their footprints and symbols under a "Free for use regardless of application" 
> license. However, expecting users of fonts to design really good fonts 
> because of this issue is crazy. So, IMHO, the gpl is going to have change 
> regarding font licensing.

Well, I think the best change the FSF could make to the GPL right now
would be a big header:

"Its applications to other works have not been extensively explored and
may be unexpected or undesirable. Please consider using a more
appropriate license for works such as multimedia creations, fonts, and
other non-software works."

(Yes, I know you can argue a font is software - that's not the point,
it's not for the same things - "using" a font is "linking" it).

I hate licensing. Argh.

Craig Ringer

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