Even if their servers won't run ubuntu 11.04+ (or something with the same library paths), their development environments will.
They can also patch the Python releases themselves, or use Ubuntu packages that someone else made for them (they can probably just install the old 2.4 packages just fine).
The Python 2.6, 2.7, and 3.2 packages in Ubuntu 11.04 already have essentially the same patch that I posted, so folks using Python 2.6 from the operating system will not have a problem. Without this patch in our repository, folks building Python 2.6 from source will have to be aware of it.
So let them use Python 2.6 from Ubuntu. Case closed!
It isn't that simple. For example, I have automated scripts that test cdecimal against decimal.py for *every* release from r25 to r32. This is also the reason why I was unhappy that r25 did not build from Mercurial initially. There has been a lot of churn lately for module authors, starting with __pycache__, cpython-32m.so suffixes and ending in the mercurial transition. In this case, it's clearly Ubuntu who is going to break things. Still, the proposed patch could make life a lot easier for many people. Stefan Krah