I was wondering, are there rules regarding putting a license onto a license, for example if I had a license and I applied it with a license, in many cases this would cause a loop hole. Is there any way to fix this?

  • 2
    Why don't you just apply the license to itself?
    – Zizouz212
    Jun 24, 2015 at 23:52

1 Answer 1


A license is copyrightable since it is a substantial piece of text, so yes of course a copyright license can be applied to it.

As an example, this is how the GPL 3 license text is licensed (taken from this question on Programmers.SE):

Copyright © 2007 Free Software Foundation, Inc. http://fsf.org/

Everyone is permitted to copy and distribute verbatim copies of this license document, but changing it is not allowed.

You might notice that this license is less free than the terms of the GPL itself, but this is understandable as they want to protect the brand of GPL, and prevent people from changing this license and keep calling it GPL.

I'm not sure why you think being able to change the license is a loophole; the license is a legal text that if you modify unilaterally, you void the license agreement between yourself and whoever you received it from. Sure you can use the modified license elsewhere, but it doesn't mean you can unilaterally change the terms of the original license.

  • 1
    What is the license of the license's license? :-)
    – svick
    Jun 25, 2015 at 15:04

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