119

Releasing a project under the MIT license is giving people permission to fork the project. Part of the philosophy behind free software is to give users and developers the right to use, modify, and release the software in ways that wouldn't normally be allowed. If you don't want people to do this, then don't use the MIT license. You can't really complain when ...


111

A friend of mine once pointed out that licenses tell you what the license authors were scared of. If you're scared of having your name dragged through the mud, then the BSD license will seem better. If you're scared of having your software put into a proprietary piece of software, then the GPL will seem better. Whatever the license, the author chooses it ...


92

You've got some options, jump to the end for the summary. So let's break this one down... Copyright (c) 2012 [Acme Corp] This is the Copyright notice and it belongs to Acme Corp. It was claimed in 2012, which is relevant because Copyright does eventually expire. If the claim was actually given to "Acme Corp", ie. it was boilerplate cut & pasted ...


71

Was Xamarin's action and the way the action was done ethical or not? Well, let's ask an expert - The Open Source Initiative's listing of the MIT License itself, with the license quoted in it's entirety: The MIT License (MIT) Copyright (c) Permission is hereby granted, free of charge, to any person obtaining a copy of this software and ...


69

Short answer is the MIT is a simpler license. Yes in many ways I like the clause about people not being able to use your name in an unwanted way, but the reality is most people are not too concerned about that. If you are concerned about that then you are probably using the BSD license already. Additionally the MIT License can just be copied and pasted as ...


60

Yes, this is covered by the MIT license and you should contact the author of the derivative work to correct the copyright notice. More precisely, with MIT license, you allow everyone: to use, copy, modify, merge, publish, distribute, sublicense, and/or sell copies of the Software, So, someone can modify and enhance your original software. In this ...


59

First, the standard disclaimer: IANAL but a random stranger. I have been packaging an AGPL application(*) recently. It uses third party libraries distributed under jQuery, MIT, BSD (and some other) licenses. Here is how I have proceeded. My main intents when I designed this were: be compliant and be fair. While the first one should be sufficient, the ...


58

The MIT license doesn't specify attribution beyond maintaining the copyright notice. The above copyright notice and this permission notice shall be included in all copies or substantial portions of the Software. Somewhere within the source for the project you are considering forking, there should be a LICENSE file or equivalent. If there isn't, then ...


56

My understanding is that: MIT-licensed projects can be used/redistributed in BSD-licensed projects. TRUE (but unless there are modifications, the users can get it from the original sources also. BSD-licensed projects can be used/redistributed in MIT-licensed projects. FALSE MIT license allows for distribution without contribution credits; BSD doesn't. The ...


52

It's technically legal. The MIT (Expat) license places a few restrictions on you. These are a subset of the GPL license. Therefore, if you relicense the code under the GPL, and keep the MIT notice, then you've satisfied the terms of the MIT license and may legally redistribute the code. Note that you may not claim copyright ownership; you'll have to ...


39

The commercial software would need to include the copyright notice for the work it has used. It doesn't mean the entire commercial work is then licensed under the MIT license. For example, I would expect to see the copyright notice for the commercial software, with the following wording added: This software includes the Yannbane Awesome Library: ...


33

Many open source applications have closed source licensing options for just this scenario. How much you charge them is dependent on: the size of the company (how much can they afford) what they're going to do with it (if they're stealing it or just using it) what they expect you to do (support/updates/extensions? what contractual level?) a ton of other ...


26

It does not affect LGPL — stands for Lesser GPL (used to mean Library GPL). The significant difference with GPL is, that it doesn't impose the license on software using the library. Only if you'd modify the library or directly include parts of the code in your software, then your code would have to be LGPL. On the other hand if you're just using gem ...


26

"It's okay." Removing the now redundant language due to the effects of the Berne convention is good. FSF has this to say: ... However, to help make sure this language cannot cause any trouble in the future, we encourage developers to choose a different license for their own works. Which basically means that the terminology is just vague enough that ...


24

Yes. But the effect may not be what you think it is. The MIT license includes all the rights the GPL gives and more. And while people who receive your distribution only receive a GPL license to elements you added, they still receive an MIT license (from the original authors, not from you) to any elements contained in the work that the authors offered under ...


24

In a very quick summary: GPL: if you use my code in yours, you must distribute your code as I do for mine; LGPL: if you modify my code, you must distribute your modifications. You can include unmodified LGPL code in proprietary code under certain conditions. MIT: do what you want with my code excepted pretend that the code is yours Then there is the fine ...


24

From the GPL FAQ (but the advice is applicable to all licenses): Why does the GPL require including a copy of the GPL with every copy of the program? Including a copy of the license with the work is vital so that everyone who gets a copy of the program can know what his rights are. It might be tempting to include a URL that refers to the license,...


21

1) Does the dual license mean that as long as one or the other is satisfied I'm fine, or does it have to be both? Yes. Specifically, jQuery makes it explicit that you can use it even in commercial environment. Why then it is also with GPL? This is because, if someone wants to make additional javascript library using jQuery, he/she can choose GPL license ...


21

I used to be an IP lawyer, so have experience with license-ese. I feel like the terms themselves are fairly readable and understandable, but then again, I'm marred by three years of law school and some lawyering time before getting my wits again and returning to hacking. Particularly since I'm not currently an active lawyer, this certainly isn't intended as ...


20

IANAL but I have discussed this and many similar issues with lawyers enough to have a good idea of what I am talking about here. This is not legal advice. The best background reading is Larry Rosen's book in the context of open source software. Rights, Licenses, Copyright and Sublicenses Under copyright law a copyright holder is granted certain exclusive ...


19

Short Answer: Yes From the MIT License: Permission is hereby granted, free of charge, to any person obtaining a copy of this software and associated documentation files (the "Software"), to deal in the Software without restriction, including without limitation the rights to use, copy, modify, merge, publish, distribute, sublicense, and/or sell ...


19

Not quite. Here's the basic idea. As you pointed out, "you can incorporate the software into your proprietary project, but that portion must remain open" under the MIT license. If you have 100 features in your proprietary product, and one of them is based on MIT-licensed code, that's fine. However, if you have 100 features in your product, and one of them ...


18

The fourth paragraph says that the copyright notice in the second paragraph must be reproduced. Users of the licence substitute the [fullname] with their actual name. That is what constitutes "proper attribution" in the mind of the MIT: every user of the software can find out who wrote it if they want to.


18

I wouldn't call it unethical. I would call it unsportsmanlike. There's an unwritten expectation that you will give a good faith effort to improve the original version before deciding to fork, and it seems the original author feels that good faith effort wasn't made. That being said, the best way to avoid your software being forked is to be responsive to ...


16

LGPL is "infectuous", which means if you use it, you risk having to (L)GPL your own work too. GPL (and, depending on the circumstances, LGPL as well) practically excludes usage in a closed-source project. The question should really be worded the other way around: Why is product X licensed under (L)GPL rather than MIT / Apache / BSD / Mozilla? The latter are,...


15

I am not a lawyer, but according to the MIT license: The above copyright notice and this permission notice shall be included in all copies or substantial portions of the Software. Therefore you may not remove the existing copyright notice. You may only add your copyright notice and license terms to portions of code that you own the copyright to, which ...


15

The GPL is considered viral because, if you combine software that is licensed under it with proprietary code, you must also open-source your proprietary code under the GPL in order to remain compliant with the GPL. The MIT license doesn't say that at all. I think you might be interpreting the term "The Software" to include your proprietary portion. It ...


14

They can IF they own it. If they have accepted contributions from other users - then they would need the agreement of those other users. This is the point of GPL, you force other people to play nicely with your code, just as you did with theirs. Since the license covers distribution the terms you agreed to when they distributed it to you still apply, they ...


14

The copyright owner of a work determines what license to use when distributing their own property (code in this case); so the company can decide to switch to a more restrictive license at any time if they so wish. Note that that does mean they must own all of the work, or have obtained licenses for the code from whomever does own it that grants them the ...


13

I'm not a lawyer, but the answer is yes. Copyright holder is the person or entity that can claim right to having created a piece work, or to whom such right has been transferred. The MIT license is not about transferring copyright, but about granting legal right to use the (copyrighted) work as stated in the license. If you write a class, you have the ...


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