I am using some code from Material Design Lite's example portfolio. The html and css is under a Creative Commons Attribution International 4.0 License, but the repository states:

As an exception to this license, all html or css that is generated by the software at the direction of the user is copyright the user. The user has full ownership and control over such content, including whether and how they wish to license it.

I'm not really sure what the above blockquote means.

  • 1
    Could you link to the document from which the quote is taken?
    – MadHatter
    May 22, 2021 at 10:34
  • Sure, it comes from getmdl.io/templates, download the portfolio one May 22, 2021 at 14:22

1 Answer 1


It says what it says. The tool's output is not covered by the license of the tool. Same as the output of a video editor is not covered by the license of the tool. Or a compiled program is not covered by the licence of the compiler.

This exception is needed, as the tool (probably) injects a lot of its own code into the output. This will make the output a derivative work. The exception allows you to use the tool without this restriction.

  • Thanks. I still don't get what software they are referring to. When I download the zip, there is nothing to generate; the html and css are already there. I don't see any pug or sass that would imply generation Jun 1, 2021 at 4:46
  • I can't see it ether, but that is because I don't have a link to it. You can help we with this. Jun 1, 2021 at 12:39
  • Sure, here: code.getmdl.io/1.3.0/mdl-template-portfolio.zip Jun 2, 2021 at 1:45

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