1. Common questions
1.1. Who are you? What are your tasks?
See http://wiki.debian.org/DebianMultimedia. If it doesn't answer your questions, please help us to improve that page
2. Getting new software in Debian
2.1. I have packaged new software. Can you upload it for me?
In general, we of course care for new multimedia packages. However we cannot sponsor packages on a regular basis. Please see DebianMentorsNet for a service aiming at this.
2.2. Ok, but not all team members of pkg-multimedia seem to be DDs. You still sponsor them, no?
Yes, we do. Please keep in mind that signing and uploading is the least work that needs to be done for sponsoring. It causes much more work to actually review, improve and fix packages. That's why we maintain our packages in git. See also PackagingWithGit and ../DevelopPackaging.
2.3. Fair enough. I have my package in git. Can you now sponsor it?
First get the package in a good state, and get a team member to review it. Only then, integrate your work in our team repository, so that later on, any team member can look at, improve and fix it if necessary. See ../DevelopPackaging for a more detailed procedure.
The rationale is that we need someone in the team as contact person in case some action is needed for the package.
2.4. Nobody in your team seems interested!
Well, either your package does not really fit the team member's interest, or (more likely) we are overworked and don't find time to integrate your package. Please consider joining the team.
2.5. There is 'Debian Multimedia Maintainers' and 'deb-multimedia.org'. So what's the difference?
'Debian Multimedia Maintainers' is the team behind the packaging of multimedia related packages distributed with Debian. In other words, 'Debian Multimedia Maintainers' is us.
'deb-multimedia.org' (aka 'dmo' or 'd-m.o', formerly 'debian-multimedia.org') is a site that offers a repository of multimedia packages as well. That site is maintained by an individual that is not part of this team.
A key difference between the 'deb-multimedia.org' and our team is that we strive to maintain packages that are considered DFSG free or get them to a state where they become DFSG free. Moreover, we aim at proper integration of programs into the Debian system. In contrast to official Debian packages, many packages from 'deb-multimedia.org' are licensed under non-free terms that limit their use and are not freely redistributable.
To distinguish between our official packages and packages from d-m.o, d-m.o adds an 'epoch' to the version number and uses a specific revision counter. This means that once you installed a version from d-m.o, package management software will always consider that version newer than the official package - even when the official package is in actual fact a newer version (but without the epoch).
2.6. Does the team coordinate package maintenance with dmo?
No. There is no such coordination with the team and anyone in dmo. There have been attempts to coordinate package maintenance with dmo, but the maintainer of dmo has consistently expressed no interest in coordinating package maintenance with anyone in the team.
2.7. Does the team provide any kind of support with using packages from dmo?
No. There is no attempt to provide support with using packages from dmo.
2.8. Well, isn't deb-multimedia.org an official part of Debian?
This is a common misconception in regards to what deb-multimedia.org is. Although dmo is run by a Debian Developer and used to make use of the word "Debian" and the Debian trademark, dmo is in fact not a part of Debian or affiliated with Debian in any way. The fund-raising that happens there does not go towards Debian. As far as we understand it, dmo is maintained by only two people, neither of whom are a part of this team.
3. Common issues
3.1. A recent upgrade of ffmpeg/libav-related library packages (e.g. libavcodec) has broken related software (e.g. Totem, MPlayer, VLC, Xine)
This is probably caused by unofficial packages from third-party repositories, e.g. 'deb-multimedia.org' (formerly 'debian-multimedia.org'). These packages are known to not integrate well with other software packages in Debian and cause breakage regularly.
It is highly recommended to remove these unofficial packages from your system and replace them with the official ones provided by Debian instead. Please use apt-cache madison libavcodec* or similar tools to determine the version of the libavcodec library package installed on your system and compare it with the one provided by the official Debian mirrors. Unofficial packages are often identified by package revision numbers like -dmo1 (formerly -0.1). You can list all the packages you have installed in your system from 'deb-multimeda.org' by running aptitude search '~S ~i ~O"Unofficial Multimedia Packages"'
Install the official package explicitely, e.g. via sudo apt-get install libavcodec53=4:0.7.2-1+b1. Usually, the official libavcodec package's dependency declarations should be sufficient to pull in the appropriate official packages for the other libraries as well. However, if needed, the aforementioned steps may be repeated to explicitely install the other library packages built from the official 'ffmpeg' or 'libav' source packages, respectively, too: libavformat, libavdevice, libavfilter, libavutil, libswscale, libpostproc.
Please do also consider to entirely remove unofficial third-party repositories from your /etc/apt/sources.list file. The few more features added to the packages provided there do often not compensate for the breakage they may cause.
3.2. Why is linuxsampler not packaged in Debian?
Linuxsampler comes with a license "GPL compatible + non-commercial exception" (See http://www.linuxsampler.org/downloads.html#exception and http://www.linuxsampler.org/faq.html) which unfortunately isn't fitting with the DFSG since you cannot be GPL and add a non-commercial exception (as this is explicitly forbidden in the GPL).
The linuxsampler team is very license sensitive and acknowledges the problem but considers it rather unlikely that they will come up with a satisfying solution (for inclusion in Debian) in that regard.
See those previous discussions for more information about this :