Is it legal to collect some usage data of a open source library? Let's say, I would like to know Things like These:

  • Name of the assembly, using the library
  • Number of Startups of the assembly, using the library

Am I allowed to collect information like these as soon as the .net assembly loads (we're talking about Desktop applications).

  • Are you asking whether this is allowed by the license of the library (if so, tell us which license, and probably move this to Open Source SE) or whether this is allowed by local privacy laws (if so, tell us which jurisdiction, and probably move this to Law SE)? Commented Feb 19, 2017 at 13:14

1 Answer 1


If you do not want to get into trouble, your library should not collect this information secretly, you should ask every user of the lib for permission, and also make sure (maybe by some "terms of use") any end user of a program which includes this lib has given his permission for collecting the data and sending it back to you. The amount of trouble you get if you do not follow these rules depend surely on your local jurisdiction, if you want more info on this, ask a lawyer.

Be aware that any user who cares a little bit for his privacy won't probably give you such a permission, so expect any usage data you get to be incomplete.

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