[Rd] legitimate use of :::

Stephen Milborrow milbo at sonic.net
Fri Aug 23 12:32:47 CEST 2013

>> To avoid the NOTEs (which often triggers a 'pls fix' upon submission to
>> CRAN), I simply copied/pasted these functions to my package, but this
>> seems wasteful.

An issue is how one acknowledges the author of the cut and pasted code.

Assume that for one reason or another the original function can't easily be
made available via NAMESPACEs and so to avoid CRAN submission complaints you
are forced into cut and copying.  If the copied code is somewhat substantial
a short acknowledgment on a man page is insufficient.  As far as I know the
only alternative to list the author of the copied code in the Author field
of your DESCRIPTION file.  This makes the Author field ungainly (especially
if the copied-from package has itself a lengthy Author field) and gives
disproportionate credit to the author of the copied code over those in

It would be good if there was a better mechanism in the DESCRIPTION file for
acknowledging authors you copied code from.  Tricky,  lots of grey areas.
On balance I think I'm in the camp of those who say ::: should allowed.

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