I am confused by copyright licenses. Specifically whether or not I am permitted to use derived code from W3Schools in my production code base.
To give a bit of context I have a contract to build a website. The particulars of the website don't really matter, except for the fact that I was searching for code that I could hack to develop a vertical drop down navigation pane. I came across a wonderful example on W3Schools that did what I wanted.
However, before I copied the code I started to do some research to make sure I wasn't violating copyright laws. According to the W3Schools copyright statement,
All pages and graphics on this website are the property of the company Refsnes Data. Pages, code or other content from W3Schools may not be redistributed or reproduced in any way, shape, or form without the written permission of Refsnes Data. Failure to do so is a violation of copyright laws.
More specifically, later on, they state that copying for profitable or commercial use is not a favorable use.
So that seems pretty clear, that I can't use this code without written permission from Refsnes Data.
However here is where I am confused - as I reviewed the source code for the HTML in question I noticed their CSS File and browsed it.
On the third line down they attribute around 25 lines or so to another developer project "Normalize.css by Nicolas Gallagher and Jonathan Neal"
Reading the MIT license for the project tells me that in order for W3Schools to make use of this code in the CSS file they must release their code with the same license and include the license statement (which they didn't do).
My questions are:
- Is W3Schools in violation of the MIT License as they do not include a reference to the license in their code?
- Am I allowed to use the W3Schools CSS file as it is a derivative of the Normalize.css and therefore automatically licensed the same way?
- Am I allowed to use the W3Schools HTML file as it is an implementation of a derivative?
- Am I overthinking this?