Hot answers tagged

158 votes
Accepted

What are the essential differences between the BSD and MIT licences?

When talking about BSD license, you have to be aware that there is not one, but actually four different BSD licenses. The most basic is the zero-clause BSD license which is basically a public domain ...
user avatar
  • 11.2k
34 votes

Do the licences permit GPL- and BSD-licensed applications to be used for government work?

The definition of Free Software includes anyone being able to use the software for any purpose (any field of endeavor and no discrimination against persons or groups). So no version of the GPL, or ...
user avatar
  • 975
31 votes
Accepted

Can someone re-license my BSD-3-licensed project under the MIT license, remove my copyright notices, and list me as a "collaborator" without consent

The 3BSD licence requires (in clause 1) that your copyright notices be preserved, and that some licence text be reproduced, whenever your code is copied. But it does not require that that licence ...
user avatar
  • 37.8k
27 votes
Accepted

Can I take BSD licensed code and distribute it under GPL?

If the BSD license in question is the two- or three-clause variant (i.e. without the advertising clause), I think you're technically allowed to do it, but you couldn't really enforce it: anyone who ...
user avatar
  • 3,983
21 votes

What are the essential differences between the BSD and MIT licences?

A couple of things were not mentioned in the accepted answer: documentation associated with the software community adoption BSD-2-Clause Plus Patent aka "BSD+Patent" Documentation Another ...
user avatar
21 votes

Do the licences permit GPL- and BSD-licensed applications to be used for government work?

Different organizations have different policies. Google is apparently fine with GPL software, but doesn't permit AGPL. Facebook seems fine with both, but anything under the SSPL or with a Commons ...
user avatar
  • 37.8k
20 votes
Accepted

If I include some GPL code in my project, can I release it as BSD?

Not with the license as it is. You will need to contact all the licensors of the GPL code, and request that they release it to you in a license that is compatible with the BSD license. Alternatively, ...
user avatar
  • 1,127
17 votes
Accepted

Does the three-clause BSD license hinder academic citations?

No, the third clause of the BSD license does not prevent an academic citation of your work. What it prevents is statements along the lines of Because we have made use of tool X by @wimi, they ...
user avatar
17 votes
Accepted

How to change the licence of Java project from GNU/ GPL to MIT / BSD / Apache

You cannot change the license of code from others, such as mysql-connector-java. That license is set by the author of that particular component (Oracle company). If your client stated the requirement ...
user avatar
  • 1,083
16 votes

Do the licences permit GPL- and BSD-licensed applications to be used for government work?

Whilst others have covered the legal aspects, I think it's worth noting there are numerous real-world examples of government agencies successfully using open-source licences without issue. Germany's ...
user avatar
16 votes
Accepted

Can someone fork my GPL licensed project and re-license it under MIT or BSD?

If your rights to a piece of software derive solely from the GPL -- and this is the usual case for most people who are redistributing GPL software -- then you cannot legally relicense under MIT, BSD, ...
user avatar
15 votes

Can I take BSD licensed code and distribute it under GPL?

First of all: There are three different BSD-licenses. The original BSD-license has four clauses, including a advertisement-clause. This advertisement-clause is incompatible with the GPL, so you cannot ...
user avatar
  • 10.8k
15 votes

Can someone re-license my BSD-3-licensed project under the MIT license, remove my copyright notices, and list me as a "collaborator" without consent

The BSD-3 license is a permissive license, but even permissive licenses have restrictions that must be observed. By removing your copyrights and license, the person who copied your code has violated ...
user avatar
14 votes
Accepted

3-Clause BSD vs AGPL for a startup FOSS product

Is the 3-clause BSD more protective for the startup rights than AGPL without creating the stigma that's around GPL? Hard question to answer, because I don't accept that there's a "stigma" around the ...
user avatar
  • 37.8k
14 votes
Accepted

Given the existence of the Apache license, and the reasons for it over MIT/BSD license, is it still safe to use MIT/BSD?

The relevant clause from Apache2 is s3: Subject to the terms and conditions of this License, each Contributor hereby grants to You a ... patent license ... If You institute patent litigation ... then ...
user avatar
  • 37.8k
13 votes

If I include some GPL code in my project, can I release it as BSD?

No, you cannot. By including GPL-code, you are including a dependency of GPL-protected code, and therefore your code is only derived work from it. The terms of GPL requires that derived work is also ...
user avatar
  • 1,749
13 votes
Accepted

Do the licences permit GPL- and BSD-licensed applications to be used for government work?

Let me quote the relevant section from the GPL v3 license, emphasis mine: 2. Basic Permissions. All rights granted under this License are granted for the term of copyright on the Program, and are ...
user avatar
13 votes
Accepted

Who owns copyright if I place code in a repository but do not update the copyright notice?

To answer the question in the title of your post: Who owns copyright if I place code in a repository but do not update the copyright notice? You own the copyright in any code you wrote. This is ...
user avatar
12 votes

If I include some GPL code in my project, can I release it as BSD?

If you wrote the code yourself, then you're the licensor and can use the code as you see fit, however: GPL does not allow sub-licensing; If you used code from other sources (for example, Stack ...
user avatar
  • 221
12 votes

If I include some GPL code in my project, can I release it as BSD?

If you wrote the code, you can do whatever you want with it. You own the code, you own the copyright. A license is you granting others certain rights, but as the author you have not given up any of ...
user avatar
12 votes

Can I take BSD licensed code and distribute it under GPL?

Theo de Raadt is wrong. Plain and simple. The BSD is a permissive license which allows to incorporate the licensed work under a different license, no matter if permissive, copyleft or proprietary. ...
user avatar
  • 11.2k
12 votes

How is the BSD GPL-compatible?

Two licenses are compatible if it is possible to satisfy both licenses at the same time. The GPLv2 states: You may not impose any further restrictions on the recipients' exercise of the rights ...
user avatar
  • 33.2k
12 votes
Accepted

Patent rights: BSD-3-Clause-Clear vs BSD-3-Clause

Your understanding is incorrect. Patents are intellectual property rights that exist to protect an invention. They are distinct from copyrights, which protect the expression of an idea. Inventions ...
user avatar
12 votes
Accepted

Preventing commercial exploitation of small changes that require a lot of work

implement the same patches with some minor changes (e.g. replace a for with a while) under their 2-clause BSD license While copyright is based on the implementation of an idea, it is broader than the ...
user avatar
11 votes

Why don't BSD developers use the SSLeay addendum if they hate GPL?

Because adding that phrase turns the license into a viral copyleft license not unlike the GPL. When you add that phrase, you could just as well use the GPL. Those who propose the BSD over the GPL ...
user avatar
  • 11.2k
11 votes

Use of BSD-3 Clause license and python software license for proprietary use

BSD-3 clause is a very permissive license that does not require you disclosing your source code or the source code of the open source libraries. You are not required to allow your users to re-...
user avatar
11 votes
Accepted

Why does the clause 3 of 4-clause BSD makes it incompatible with GPL?

The GPL does not normally require licence holders to put any special acknowledgments in their advertising material. GPLv3 s7 says that any of six additional restrictions may be added to the normal ...
user avatar
  • 37.8k
10 votes

Can I take BSD licensed code and distribute it under GPL?

You can legally relicense under conditions compatible with the original license (meaning most forms of the BSD license will allow relicensing under the GPL). It just carries very little meaning for ...
user avatar
  • 101
10 votes
Accepted

Can I license Python project under 3-clause BSD while it has GPL-based dependencies

tl;dr: Some, including the Free Software Foundation (FSF, publishers of the GPL) says no, you can't do this. Others say yes, you can. The FSF considers a work a single program if the parts ...
user avatar
  • 8,986
10 votes

Derived work of BSD licensed software, how do I indicate this?

If you adapt a file, you have to satisfy the licensing requirements for that file, whatever your changes and whatever the licensing requirements. If the module only specifies Copyright ... and BSD, I'...
user avatar
  • 3,983

Only top scored, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible