Questions tagged [copyleft]

For questions about the copyleft concept (also known as Share-Alike), a concept that promotes or enforces the use of the same or compatible license for derived works.

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What if I don't open-source my code after using a copyleft public repo?

I plan to build an app based on a public repo with a copyleft license (AGPL-3.0 license). I don't want to open-source my own code (my own code will just server and front-end code, which are built on ...
Kism281's user avatar
  • 29
4 votes
1 answer
106 views

What is the best weak copyleft licence against patent trolling?

To avoid an XY question, the general requirements I have are: The licence should not impose operational complexity for downstream users of a library (users should not be forced to think about linking)...
saolof's user avatar
  • 143
16 votes
5 answers
5k views

Locking myself from ever changing license

Is there any way, that I can lock myself from ever changing the repository license to non open-source one? These is this trend with open-source companies, that once they gain enough press, and enough ...
Maciej Bledkowski's user avatar
8 votes
4 answers
6k views

Why it is not possible to create a proprietary fork of GPL?-or-later software?

Let's assume there is a project under GPL2-or-later license. My understanding is that anyone can take the project and make a fork with GPL2-only additions. They could also take the project and make a ...
graywolf's user avatar
  • 211
2 votes
2 answers
165 views

CC BY-NC copyleft?

I did some research and could not answer the question: Does CC BY-NC ensure that the NC restriction is passed forward? I would think it should. Otherwise, someone could make a tiny change to the work ...
user334639's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
124 views

Can I use MPL 2.0 and BSL licensed software for a proprietary repo?

I am building a web application in which I intend to keep the source code private and proprietary. The web application would be used by end users for personal profit. I plan on using Turborepo (https:/...
dr jellybean's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
101 views

does reformatting JSON count as 'transformation' for CC-SA?

I am working with a very large JSON dataset licensed CC-BY-SA. I only need parts of this dataset, and some of the JSON field names are not especially descriptive, so I am re-naming them. The text of ...
ConfusedChipmunk's user avatar
5 votes
1 answer
182 views

Copyleft licenses for a (new) LaTeX document class

I am about to release a new document class I developed myself. I am currently in disarray about what license can/should be used for such a project. The "default" license used for LaTeX code ...
Mykhailo Mishchenko's user avatar
5 votes
2 answers
3k views

"Pure Copyleft" Software Licenses? (with no additional restrictions)

TL;DR How can we replace the GPLv3 requirements of source disclosure + explicit license copy with something more subtle like "This work allows the users [...], and any derived work (recursively) ...
FxMySz's user avatar
  • 61
5 votes
1 answer
235 views

When I use CC BY-SA media in a website, do I "remix, transform, or build upon the material"?

I'm using some images that have a CC BY-SA 4.0 license in my website. Of course I apply the correct attribution as is required by the license. I am, however, confused by the "ShareAlike" ...
Frank Houweling's user avatar
5 votes
2 answers
188 views

AGPLv3 - Does indirect use over intermediary servers constitute "distribution"?

Let's say I'm building an app consisting of a frontend, backend and database. The database software is AGPLv3.0 licensed and running on the database server. The backend is proprietary, running on the ...
Simon Farshid's user avatar
5 votes
3 answers
465 views

GPL and Linking Exceptions

I'm trying to decide on a license for some code I'm going to be open-sourcing shortly, and having a hard time choosing among the major licenses (as less common licenses are things people are not as ...
user30520's user avatar
7 votes
2 answers
1k views

Do physical assets created directly from GPLed, copyleft digital designs (not programs or libraries) acquire the same license?

Situation: I use LGPL licensed software to create some digital assets that contain original designs. I don't modify the original LGPL software in the process; I just use it. The primary use of the ...
Life5ign's user avatar
  • 210
6 votes
2 answers
1k views

Dynamically Linking a Proprietary Module to a GPL-Covered Library (C/C++)

Context Suppose I have two projects called: Foo Bar Goal: The Foo compiles to some sort of dynamic linking library such as a windows .dll and links to project Bar dynamically. And some of the ...
Nasir Hossain's user avatar
5 votes
1 answer
183 views

Does AGPLv3 cover a company running an application via email correspondence?

I am in a situation where a company is interested in running an application of mine licensed under the AGPLv3. The company will repeatedly take inputs from multiple customers, and then return the ...
grapher's user avatar
  • 53
3 votes
2 answers
395 views

Can CC-BY-SA code be removed from a larger code base and not have the remaining code bear the CC-BY-SA license?

My understanding of the CC-BY-SA is that if you use a snippet of CC-BY-SA code in a larger project, not only must you reveal the source code of your entire project, but you must also brand the entire ...
NextNightFlyer's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
85 views

GNU license for "Open Metronome" - what license applies to beats generated with it?

If i am using the GNU-licensed software "Open Metronome" (https://sourceforge.net/projects/openmetronome/) to create the basic rhythm of my own music, I am wondering if I can freely ...
Cori's user avatar
  • 21
2 votes
1 answer
127 views

Can I change the content license on my Stackoverflow/Stackexchange posts to something more permissive like MIT?

I was experimenting with Stackoverflow's API requests and I noticed this on my posts: I've mentioned in previous posts that while I respect CC BY-SA 4.0's intentions, I don't like the copyleft ...
NextNightFlyer's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
113 views

Can I sever proprietary code from a codebase that was published containing CC BY-SA 4.0 code?

If I copied some code from Stackoverflow early on in the development process, forgot to take it out, and published the finished website containing the code from Stackoverflow, is my website no longer ...
NextNightFlyer's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
125 views

I need clarifications on what rights I'm granting by the CC BY-SA 4.0

It was recently brought to my attention that by posting anything to Stackoverflow, you irrevocably grant Stackoverflow a CC BY-SA 4.0 license to your posted content. I thought CC BY-SA 4.0 was ...
NextNightFlyer's user avatar
6 votes
1 answer
1k views

How does GPL differ from CC BY-NC-SA?

Am I right that: Copyleft is not equal to Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-SA "This license lets others remix, adapt, and build upon your work non-commercially, as long as they credit you and license ...
Programmer1988's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
125 views

What's the difference between GPL licence and CECILL-2.1?

These two licenses are for open-source code. Does the CECILL-2.1 give rights to sell the open source code without author notification, as it says in Article 5? 5.3 RIGHT OF DISTRIBUTION In particular,...
Programmer1988's user avatar
4 votes
0 answers
163 views

If I use a CC-BY-SA artwork as part of my book cover art, do I need to share my entire book cover art under a similar license?

I'm confused about the share alike part of the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license which states: share alike – If you remix, transform, or build upon the material, you must ...
vvinjam's user avatar
  • 41
3 votes
1 answer
201 views

Importing GPLv3'd code: Which copyright notice to add to my own code?

Let's say I import some header files (or Python modules) which are under GPLv3 into a source file that I would like to publish as Open Source (OS), and also signify that I have copyright on that ...
cwellm's user avatar
  • 83
-2 votes
1 answer
77 views

Choosing appropriate license for my project [duplicate]

I’m planning to write an open-source OS. So these are the thing I want to include with my license: For non-commercial use, I give users unlimited rights to copy, distribute, edit my OS, but they must ...
tomsimi's user avatar
  • 21
7 votes
2 answers
416 views

Does CC BY-SA affect recordings of performances of songs?

If I write, and publish sheet music for, a hymn under CC BY-SA, and it is sung in a church, and the church records their services, does the recording have to be CC BY-SA? If so, can I avoid this while ...
Someone's user avatar
  • 317
1 vote
1 answer
93 views

How do copyleft redistribution clauses fit in with purely hardware products?

How could redistribution clauses common to copyleft licenses (paraphrased below) be applied to purely hardware products? i.e. products that contain no software or firmware but where all design ...
Jacob Abel's user avatar
6 votes
1 answer
227 views

Is it a GPL violation to provide source code in a format that can only be opened or "compiled" with non-free software?

Looking through the GPL FAQ, there is the question of if you can use the GPL license for non-software products, as long as it is clear what constitutes the source code. Of course, that does not mean ...
cat40's user avatar
  • 161
4 votes
1 answer
108 views

Is there a license similar to the CC BY-SA license that is copyleft but allows source-unreadable derivatives to be released?

I'm looking for a license that's similar to the CC BY-SA license that allows people to use my code for whatever purpose as long as they license derivative works under the same license. The distinction ...
webb's user avatar
  • 41
1 vote
1 answer
97 views

Is EPL compatible with Apple App Store?

I heard that there are some known issues with publishing GPL software on App Store and GPL may be incompatible with restrictions placed by App Store. EPL (Eclipse Public License) is another copyleft-...
gavv's user avatar
  • 412
7 votes
1 answer
309 views

Is the Open Gaming License a type of open source license?

Wizards of the Coast (publishers of the Dungeons and Dragons desktop role playing game) have for years operated under the Open Gaming License. The License: This License applies to any Open Game ...
Machavity's user avatar
  • 187
4 votes
0 answers
184 views

Blender addon interface with non-GPL compatible renderer through OpenGL driver using system library exception?

Why I'm making a 3D rendering addon for Blender which is GPL 2/3 code that needs to communicate with non-GPL compatible library that does the rendering. I need some of this communication to be as fast ...
hwlake's user avatar
  • 41
2 votes
2 answers
253 views

Can I license certain components of my software as MIT, but have the overall software be Copyleft?

I'm considering releasing the source code of an App as Copyleft, but would like some individual components (just not the core project) to be used under a more permissive MIT license. How would this ...
Nathan's user avatar
  • 163
3 votes
2 answers
346 views

Is AGPLv3 or MPLv2 better for an open-source API meant to be integrated into closed-source customer APIs?

Description: This open-source code is an API (let's call it X-API), which is meant to be used by businesses running their own closed-source APIs The goal: Let other companies/individuals interact ...
gs8282's user avatar
  • 59
4 votes
1 answer
261 views

Copyleft licensed part inside permissive software

Assume somebody writes software and distributes it to customers. Since any dependency under a copyleft license (such as the GPL) would require putting the whole software under a copyleft license, ...
otessa's user avatar
  • 43
5 votes
1 answer
567 views

Software licence description doesn't match AGPL licence limitations

In my research of AGPL I have found that creating REST API around AGPL licensed library is enough to make it communication at arms length and as such it bypasses the need to publish all of your ...
UserOfNet's user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
200 views

Licensing in a scripting language - Copyleft

I am trying to understand when and where the copyleft of GPL v2|v3 applies, similar to this OS question. The way I understand it, is that if a derivative work is created AND distributed, copyleft ...
David's user avatar
  • 111
0 votes
1 answer
249 views

How can Apple distribute Bash (and other GPL v2 software) with macOS? Is it not a derivative work?

And how could they license Darwin as APSL if based on GPL v2 software? See
cgcmake's user avatar
  • 119
2 votes
1 answer
440 views

Does the Common Public License (CPL-1.0) require dynamic linking to keep source code undisclosed?

I'm looking into the rules of the Common Public License and am wondering how far it's copyleft-ness extends. AFAIK: With LGPL you can keep the library you wish to use in a separate .dll or .so, ...
FrostKiwi's user avatar
  • 123
1 vote
1 answer
236 views

Using Mongo DB in my embedded device as a backend service

I am writing a software for commercial purposes that reads and parses text files for further retrieval and analysis. To store the imported text files I would prefer to use Mongo DB. This DB had been ...
uwe's user avatar
  • 41
1 vote
0 answers
68 views

Does the Reciprocal Public Licence require notifications only to be given to the first original licensor?

If person A creates a work under RPL-1.5 and person B creates a work based on person A's work, person B has to notify person A with the changes. If person A then uses these changes and continues to ...
8jy78kj's user avatar
  • 11
3 votes
1 answer
121 views

Copyleft/share-alike non-attribution licenses?

Is there any existing license can a person can use to distribute a document that allows reuse, derivative works, and free distribution, under the condition of it being licensed under the same or a ...
o c's user avatar
  • 33
7 votes
1 answer
2k views

Need samples of copyleft notices

I would like to make my lecture notes free, and available to all, but would like to be given credit if others use part of it. Should it be copyleft, GPL, CC, or others? What would be a proper notice ...
victor saouma's user avatar
16 votes
2 answers
3k views

Can I copy some AGPL code to my AGPL project?

Let's say Alice has Project A, which is licenced under the AGPL, and Bob has Project B, which is also licenced under AGPL. Bob sees a function in Project A that looks very useful, and wants to copy it ...
starbeamrainbowlabs's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
202 views

Which open-source license allows everything except warranty?

The most permissive liscense known to me, Creative Commons Zero disallows patenting of the source but I would like to grant all permissions except warranty.
Anm's user avatar
  • 175
2 votes
1 answer
478 views

Using copyleft software (GPL v2) and distribute it with proprietary software

My case: My app is proprietary full-stack server app that will be distributed as closed source. I want to package my app into an VM. The VM have Ubuntu installed which contains Linux (GPL v2 licensed)...
nouvist's user avatar
  • 197
0 votes
1 answer
41 views

Which license to use for a template that you cannot modify (structure) and must attribute, but which can be used freely : fill with data, images...?

What license to use for a template ? As an example, let's say an MS Access template. I want people to use/share it but only to store data, commercially or not, but isn't it a 'modification' of the ...
Joe Vanni's user avatar
1 vote
3 answers
307 views

Are there any real punishments for intentional malicious behavior in GPL or any other "no-warranties" licensed software?

There haven't been any significant incidents on FOSS software developers turning evil and pumping their software with malicious code. But each person is different, with different intentions. While I ...
legodude's user avatar
5 votes
1 answer
2k views

Best way to include GPL-licensed code in an MIT-licensed library

I am currently developing a Python library under an MIT license (let's call it mylib). I have, however, come across what may be a minor hurdle. I want to include an optional GPL-licensed dependency. I ...
Yngve Moe's user avatar
  • 151
8 votes
2 answers
3k views

Using an unmodified GPL library in non-copyleft code

I am writing a piece of software that I plan to distribute. In my code, I use a GPL licensed library. Do I have to apply the GPL to my software even if I did not do any changes to the above mentioned ...
Jakub's user avatar
  • 89