Questions tagged [licensing]

Licensing refers to applying a license to an area of software. Only use this tag if your question concerns the application of a license to an area of interest. If your question concerns a specific license, use the tag that corresponds to your license. For more general questions, use this tag.

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7
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1answer
96 views

Should I send attribution/copyright notes to a client over a server?

I know that when I use MIT projects, I have to include the license text of that author. But when I use that stuff on the server-side should I render/send it to the client of the server? Should I put ...
7
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2answers
2k views

Do I have to disclose the source code of a Linux Driver I have not developed?

A 3rd-party Hardware manufacturing company is willing to sell me a Linux Driver for one of their products. The third-party company claims that the Linux Driver is derivative work of the driver they ...
101
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5answers
11k views

How can a “crayon” license be a problem?

Bruce Perens (co-founder of OSI) has coined the term "crayon license": I've been calling these "crayon licenses", taking a line from an old Monty Python sketch about a dog license with the word "...
-1
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1answer
417 views

Is aviary free for commercial use? [closed]

I found a piece of software I would like to use but I am unsure if I can use it in a an app which generates money for me. This is the app's legal terms but I am used to basic licences like apache or ...
5
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1answer
520 views

Have open source licenses been shut down in court?

There was a lawsuit between Mattell regarding CPHack. As I remember, Mattell bought a company who made a product under the GPL, rescinded the license and sued all those who redistributed original or ...
5
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1answer
352 views

Should the source code of the Linux drivers ported to the VMKernel be released?

As this blog entry says, although the command line interface of the ESXi server (the virtualization host platform of the VMWare vSphere) isn't derived from Linux, but it is an independently developed, ...
8
votes
1answer
241 views

Can I apply an open source license if I referenced copyright documentation during development?

I am working on python library that wraps a non-free C library. In order to develop this, I referenced the C library's copyrighted documentation. Because of that my function and variable names are the ...
5
votes
4answers
672 views

License for Mondor's MS Captcha?

Does anyone know what the license is for Mondor's MS Captcha? The only information that I could find on their site was: "License MS Captcha is free to use in any kind of projects. The software is ...
8
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3answers
253 views

Licensing Community Wiki Posts at Stack Exchange

A while back, I ask this question: Can I Override a licensing Policy? I determined that instead of stating a license on a profile page, it dual-licenses the content posted by that user, instead of ...
9
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3answers
651 views

Will copyleft help me control what others are able to do with my code?

Given that I've written a program that I want to release as Open Source / Free Software (as defined by the OSI and the FSF), will choosing a copyleft license help me control what others are able to do ...
6
votes
1answer
153 views

Can I use Free Software as basis for a web-service without distributing the source?

I want to provide a service, intended to make me money, based upon free software. It consists of a free plugin (client) and a web-service. The client is published as Open Source, and it is deployed ...
5
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2answers
278 views

Can I forbid distributing my open source project for less money than I do?

This question is partially inspired by How is selling FLOSS packages for monetary compensation a viable strategy? After reading that question and some of its answers, I was left wondering if there ...
7
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2answers
191 views

Are dates mandatory in GPL licences?

According to Wikipedia's Copyright Formalities and Copyright notice, dating or even putting the author copyright notice in unnecessary. And then explanations such as this Stack Overflow Post make me ...
13
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2answers
1k views

Are you obliged to enforce your license?

I've got a number of software projects, licensed under varying licenses. For simplicity, let's take one of them, licensed under the GPL. Obviously, the GPL requires various things, and there may be ...
5
votes
1answer
113 views

Integrating code without a patent license into a code base with a patent license

What issues are involved when taking code from (for example) MIT licensed code and including it in a Apache 2.0/GPLv3 licensed project. Does that mean that there is simply no patent license granted? ...
7
votes
2answers
583 views

Does open source clothing exist?

Does open source clothing exists? With that I mean, do sewing patterns, tutorials or steering files for sewing and weaving machines, that are licensed as open source exist? Meaning these patterns, ...
7
votes
1answer
343 views

Are discriminatory free licenses still free?

With free licenses, one cannot restrict who or how the software is used. Suppose that I construct a license that says: If you are not Steve you are permitted to license under A; if you are Steve ...
16
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2answers
4k views

Is my code FLOSS just because it is published it on GitHub?

Does publishing my code on GitHub make it FLOSS automatically? Is there some license automatically assigned to it? Is it "technically or say literally, open source"?
8
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5answers
941 views

Acknowledging employer in an open source project

My employer has given me to permission to open source a component of a project that I have been working on, allowing me to retain ownership and control, with the condition that they be acknowledged in ...
0
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2answers
161 views

How is Google able to relicense their photos on Google Streetview, which may contain copyrighted content? [closed]

While driving in the car recently I noticed a Google Streetview car go by outside. Once I got home I went onto Google Streetview and looked around for a bit. This is when I noticed the copyright ...
4
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2answers
1k views

What do I do if I broke the terms of an open source license? [closed]

While this question says what to do if someone is breaking the terms of a license, I am asking what do I do if I breaking the terms of an open source license? I was using a piece of software and ...
11
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3answers
333 views

Can I create a derivative of an old book?

Copyright for old works expire at some point. In most countries that happens 70 years after authors death. Can I take a book with expired copyright (say Dickens Oliver Twist), change it substantially (...
6
votes
3answers
174 views

Is there an institution that accepts and promotes open hardware licenses?

In the software world the FSF and the OSI both accept licenses as free/open. They also promote licenses for usage. In the hardware world some open source licenses have been created, like the TAPR Open ...
4
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2answers
969 views

Do open source cooking recipes exist?

Cooking recipes are often used to explain novice programmers about the concept of algorithms. There are some basic similarities to these two. So I ask myself, if there are open source programs, are ...
6
votes
2answers
618 views

Can voters modify the code of a voting computer?

Consider a voting computer. The software running this computer is licensed under the GNU GPL v3. Does this license mean that the voters using this computer to cast their votes must be able to modify ...
4
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2answers
59 views

Are the contents of an image covered by the license applied to the image?

Suppose I have an image of a piece of paper on which I wrote. I publish this image under an open source CC-BY license on my website. My question: Is the text in the image now also licensed under a ...
11
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2answers
191 views

Can I quote stuff from a copyrighted piece of text and publish it open sourced?

Suppose I am writing an article for a website. I go to a website for research, and I find a piece of text I want to include. At the bottom of the website it says "Copyright website.com 2015". My ...
10
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2answers
1k views

Does the GNU GPL 3 prohibit DRM?

Is DRM, which some spell as "Digital Rights Management", others as "Digital Restriction Management", allowed by the GPL? In other words, can software that implements DRM be licensed under the GPL? ...
14
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3answers
2k views

How does one combine differently licensed code in one open source program?

I'm the author of WorldPainter. It's licensed according to the GPL v3, but I am about to include some code (dynmap) that is licensed according to the Apache License version 2.0. According to both ...
17
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1answer
2k views

GPL v3 “convey” vs. GPL v2 “distribute”

I've noticed that the GNU GPL version 3 uses the word "convey" where version 2 used "distriubte": GNU GPLv3: To “convey” a work means any kind of propagation that enables other parties to make or ...
8
votes
3answers
231 views

What methods could you use to prevent broken licensing links?

Suppose you have an open source piece of software. You decide you want to publish the software under an open source license. You spend time researching licenses online and finally you find the perfect ...
11
votes
3answers
347 views

Can I apply one license to specific users and another to others?

Suppose I am a developer. I am developing a piece of software. I decide I want to make this code open source. But... I only want developers (or people that will be using the code in other projects) to ...
5
votes
4answers
298 views

Can I make a specific line of code not open source?

Suppose I am working on a piece of software. I want to release it under an open source license. But after thought I decide that line 36 I would like to keep closed source. After doing research, I am ...
5
votes
3answers
157 views

How much of the project needs to be open source for it be be considered open source?

I know that you can make parts of a project open source and keep other parts colosed source. Suppose I have a peice of software and I only make 1 line of the code in the software open source. My ...
8
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2answers
2k views

If the copyright-owner claims his works to be open source, do they have to release the source somewhere?

The copyright-owner can choose any license they wish to. But if they decide to choose an open source license (lets say Apache 2), how much do they have to conform to the license? Especially, do they ...
8
votes
1answer
151 views

How to license Stack Overflow contributions as permissive as possible? [duplicate]

Important: this related Meta Stack Exchange post. Code you post on Stack Overflow is licensed "cc-by-sa 3.0 with attribution required". Now this may pose problems for people wanting to use my ...
6
votes
2answers
245 views

Is there a simple web licence for a backlink?

I'm a BSD developer, and I prefer to have a clear ISC licence at the top of every file that is fully self-sufficient in regards to the exact terms that I'm imposing on my work. Is there a variation ...
25
votes
4answers
2k views

License for code snippets?

I share small snippets of code with friends, and would like to post them online for others to use. I'm not sure of the best license? I was thinking MIT, but it includes this clause: The above ...
32
votes
2answers
3k views

Copyright and Contributing to an Open Source Project

I'm a little confused by copyright notices on open source projects. Let's say that a particular project is covered by a very permissive license, such as MIT or BSD. A copyright notice appears from ...
8
votes
2answers
259 views

When does a forked project require a license?

I haven't quite grasped the implications of forking a licensed project to public. I am assuming that a similar license should be kept, but what happens if that's not possible? Edit I am providing ...
0
votes
1answer
176 views

Looking for a legally-strong open source license

Most licenses available do not seem to carry any legal weight. Are there any Open Source licenses that do? The old copyright laws used to impose a monetary fine for infringement, but then how do the ...
11
votes
3answers
302 views

Can I open source the code and charge for the access to it?

I have some code which I would like to open source it (as part of the private repository), however the access should be limited only to the memberships who paid the access fee. Is it going to work? ...
4
votes
1answer
56 views

Can you open source part of a database and keep another part closed?

Suppose I had a table in a database. This table contains user profile information. Each profile has: Name, birthdate, username, mini-bio, gender. My question: Suppose I wanted to make the "mini bio"...
4
votes
1answer
98 views

Am I legally obligated to provide access to my open source project?

Suppose I have a peice of software that I am developing with a group of friends. Suppose we license our work under a CC license and publish it on the internet. My question: If we license our ...
17
votes
1answer
4k views

Why shouldn't Creative Commons licenses be used for software? [duplicate]

Suppose I was finishing up an open source software. I needed to license it under an open source license. My question: Why would I not want to license my software under a Creative Commons license? ...
9
votes
2answers
242 views

How to deal with unofficial/proprietary licences - are open source projects of this type really open?

Recently I was confronted with several projects that claim to be open source. I was happy to find their source code on a public repository but when looking at the license I was wondering why they do ...
5
votes
3answers
190 views

Can software be restricted to open source operating systems?

As can be seen from answers to this question, a piece of open source software cannot be licensed in such a way that it is only usable on one specified operating system. However, can it be licensed in ...
5
votes
3answers
156 views

How do I stop republication under a different license?

Suppose I am finishing an open source software. I am about to publish it but I just have to choose the license. I want it to be a CC-BY license but I don't want anyone to republish it under ANY other ...
6
votes
2answers
233 views

Is the BY-NC-ND license the most strict CC license for my open source project?

Suppose I am working on an open source project. I am nearly finished, and about to publish it. I would like to release it to the public so that they can learn and make their own version but I DO NOT ...
-7
votes
2answers
186 views

Could you apply a CC-BY license to a piece of land? [closed]

Suppose you are a land owner. You own a large piece of land containing lots of amazing fossils and other important pieces of history. To share this with the world you decide you want to allow ANYONE ...