For a commercial project I'm working on I am using an NPM package called 'react-image-crop'.


react-image-crop holds the ISC licence. Since I want to edit the functionality of this library and it's a small library I would like to literally copy&paste it directly into my project, mix it with the rest of my commercial source code and edit it (without using node_modules and npm install, also without forking to my GitHub etc). Would I be allowed to do that?

  • The way you copy code does not matter. If you are allowed to copy it, then you are allowed to. If you are not allowed to copy it, then you are not allowed to. So you really should ask if you are allowed to copy the code and under what conditions you are allowed to copy it. If you are allowed to do it, then you are allowed to do it whether you use a tool such as npm install to automatically copy the code for you, whether you use the "copy&paste" function of a text editor, whether you print it out and type a copy of the code by hand, and so on.
    – Brandin
    Commented Nov 7, 2018 at 6:28
  • Also whether or not you put something on GitHub is a red herring. If a license says "you may redistribute this", then generally that means you may redistribute it, whether you do so using GitHub, Bitbucket, CDs, floppy disks, smoke signals, or some other means of redistribution. On the other hand, if the license says "you may not redistribute this" then you simply may not do so. For open source licenses, permission to redistribute is generally given, although there may be conditions required for doing so.
    – Brandin
    Commented Nov 7, 2018 at 6:30

1 Answer 1


Firstly, IANAL/IANYL. That said, the ISC licence allows that:

Permission to use, copy, modify, and/or distribute this software for any purpose with or without fee is hereby granted, provided that the above copyright notice and this permission notice appear in all copies.

which is very much like other non-copyleft free licences. We have a number of other questions here about how you should fulfil licences that require copyright and/or permissions notices, but provided you fulfil that requirement, you can use the software in a proprietary project.

I note in passing that the FSF mentions some erstwhile issue with the "and/or" license text, but also notes that they're now satisfied that it's not a problem.

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