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I just can't seem to find an answer to this.

Normally I assign MIT License to all of my GitHub repositories, but so far they have only included code that I have personally written. I think that MIT License is great, but with my new project I need to include the logos of a few organizations. I have the permission to use these organizations' logos and digital brand images, but I clearly can't place these under the same MIT License as my code.

What license should I use for a repository that includes MIT Licensed code and trademark/copyright protected images like logos and brand imagery from third parties?

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    A repository does not need one license to fit all. You can apply different ones to different files, especially when it comes to the distinction of code and assets. Have a look at repos of FireFox or similar how they deal with it. – planetmaker May 15 at 9:21
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The big picture answer is that you should probably use a mixture of licences; MIT (or whatever you like) for your code, and whatever licence is appropriate for the logos. There doesn't seem to be any easy way on github to indicate in the "license" field that a mixture of licences is in use, but that's not the end of the world. Don't use that field, and make the licences clear in the code itself, in the README, and in the documentation.

What licence is appropriate for the logos? It depends on what permissions the rightsholders have given you.

  • If they've just said you can use them, but said nothing about other people, then they shouldn't be in the repository at all, because nobody has any rights to copy them.
  • If they've hedged the grant, such as "you can use the logos, but they can't be used or reused except in the context of this project", then you need to make that clear to potential users, and since there is no simple licence that quickly expresses that, you'll have to write that yourself. Just be clear.
  • If they've said something like "you can use and distribute them unaltered", then something like CC BY-ND 4.0 is a quick and well-understood way of telling people they can copy and use the logos, but not edit them.
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