I have a public GitHub repo, with multiple folders containing different plugins.

Am I able to license each of those plugins separately, or does the whole repo have to be licensed as one?

One of the plugins is a modification to an MIT licensed plugin. This is obviously nice and permissive, but I don't want to have to include the original copyright holder for this plugin on every other plugin. Is it enough for me to put a separate license file in the folder of the plugin in question, and then license the rest with a license file in the main repo? Or would I need to license each plugin separately in their own folders? Or would I need to host this particular plugin in a separate repo? (absolutely not ideal)


1 Answer 1


As the author, you are free to license each of your works (here: individual files, directories, even versions of the above) as you please.

But make sure you don't create a nightmare of twisty little licensed pieces, all looking alike, for your would-be user. Presumably you want to make your work as widely useful, easy to use and build upon as possible. The license(s) you select should work in this sense. Also check out David A. Wheeler's "Make Your Open Source Software GPL-Compatible. Or Else.", and read up e.g. on OSI's page on licenses and similar discussions.

  • Alright great, thank you for the clarification. It's just a case of necessity, due to the way the installer works for the plugins I'm making I need to format the repo in a specific way. Only one plugin contains code from another person, but it is it's own piece of software essentially. I wanted to make sure I didn't accidentally give that person copyright over all of my own separate plugins too, even though I plan on making it either MIT or GPL.
    – Jademalo
    Mar 26, 2021 at 5:21
  • Is there any specific formatting I should use for this?
    – Jademalo
    Mar 26, 2021 at 5:34
  • @Jademalo, simplest would be to keep the contributed piece in a separate directory. Even consider making it a git submodule, taking upstream directly.
    – vonbrand
    May 21, 2021 at 20:37
  • I can't due to the structure unfortunately, I have to edit the main single file that is the software.
    – Jademalo
    May 23, 2021 at 7:59

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