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Share Your Experience: Take the 2024 Developer Survey
52 votes

Can I use my own GPL'ed code in my closed source program?

You can freely issue additional licenses to your own GPL software, without restriction. Licenses can either give an exclusive or non-exclusive right. For example, an employment contract will ...
amon's user avatar
  • 39k
47 votes
Accepted

Can I modify an open source license to require that I be notified?

I cannot say whether this would be considered open source, but it would not be free software. Free software confers, amongst other things, the right to modify the software; the FSF refer to this as ...
MadHatter's user avatar
  • 49.3k
44 votes

Can there be a copyright on negative code?

For me, this exposes a weakness in the mental model many coders seem to have about the operation of copyright. Consider a pile of bricks, representing code contributions to a work. In one (...
MadHatter's user avatar
  • 49.3k
36 votes
Accepted

Which licenses give me a guarantee that a software I'm installing is completely open-source, free of closed-source dependencies or components?

No Open Source license does that. Even the GNU GPL license allows one program to interact with another non-free program via pipes, sockets, streams etc. While the licenses can't do this, there are ...
curiousdannii's user avatar
36 votes

Which license can protect a software to be distribute without changes under a different name?

This license isn't going to do what you want it to, for two reasons: I get the code, I add one space to an error message. It's now a modified version, so I can distribute it. I get the code. "My ...
Philip Kendall's user avatar
31 votes

Locking myself from ever changing license

You can't do anything within the constraints of copyright law as the copyright holder is never restricted by the license. Practically if you accept contributions from a large number of contributors ...
Philip Kendall's user avatar
29 votes
Accepted

Are software licenses version-specific?

Firstly, since you are the sole author you are (presumably) the sole rightsholder, so you aren't bound by the licence anyway. Secondly, licences don't inhere in software, they attach to software ...
MadHatter's user avatar
  • 49.3k
24 votes
Accepted

Which license can protect a software to be distribute without changes under a different name?

My colleague has posted an excellent explanation of why a licence that does exactly what you've asked for would be pointless. It would also be non-free, because the right to distribute both non-...
MadHatter's user avatar
  • 49.3k
24 votes
Accepted

How can I judge the "strength" of a licence?

Speaking about “strength” is a simplification. Recipients must comply with all the licenses of all the components that are part of the program, and you cannot choose a license that makes compliance ...
amon's user avatar
  • 39k
21 votes
Accepted

Can I "upgrade" the version of CC BY-SA from 3.0 to 4.0 in my modification?

The CC-BY-SA 3.0 license is “forward compatible” with later versions. In section 4(b): You may Distribute or Publicly Perform an Adaptation only under the terms of: (i) this License; (ii) a ...
amon's user avatar
  • 39k
20 votes
Accepted

Remove BSD LICENSE file while importing code into GPL project

The short answer is no. You cannot remove a BSD license notice, otherwise you are no longer licensed per the BSD (many variants) that all share the essential requirement to retain the copyright and ...
Philippe Ombredanne's user avatar
20 votes
Accepted

Pros and Cons of using MPL-2.0 license?

Am I allowed to distribute the project for money under this license? Yes. However, if you distribute/sell binaries, then you may not charge extra for the source code. And, as the MPL license is a ...
Bart van Ingen Schenau's user avatar
20 votes

Using an unmodified GPL library in non-copyleft code

As a add-on answer to amend what @amon explained in his answer: That is the point of releasing a library under GPL: Any program which wants to make use of it also needs to be distributed under terms ...
planetmaker's user avatar
  • 11.2k
19 votes

Can I modify an open source license to require that I be notified?

Do not use non-standard opensource licenses The other answers are great, and show that what you want to do is probably not too far down an OSS route but here is a different viewpoint. There's a ...
GPPK's user avatar
  • 299
18 votes

Which licenses give me a guarantee that a software I'm installing is completely open-source, free of closed-source dependencies or components?

Which licenses give me a guarantee that a software I'm installing is completely open-source, free of closed-source dependencies or components? Unfortunately, a license cannot do that. Here's the ...
Stephen C's user avatar
  • 441
18 votes

Locking myself from ever changing license

You may assign the copyright of your project to a trusted organization. While you, as the copyright holder, may change the license freely, transferring your rights to someone else removes that ability....
lights0123's user avatar
17 votes

Can there be a copyright on negative code?

Not all changes are of sufficient novelty to constitute something copyrightable, whether they are additions or deletions. For a simple example, consider any old out of copyright song or hymn of five ...
curiousdannii's user avatar
15 votes

Can I use my own GPL'ed code in my closed source program?

IANAL/TINLA: Proceed at your own risk. Yes. According to the GPL FAQ, it states here two things: I would like to release a program I wrote under the GNU GPL, but I would like to use the same code in ...
sportzpikachu's user avatar
15 votes
Accepted

PySimpleGUI, until now, has been distributed under the GPLV3, but just became a subscription model. How does that work?

Isn't the prior version still FOSS? Licences do not inhere in software, but instead their obligations attach to the recipient through the act of conveyance. If you received a copy of this software ...
MadHatter's user avatar
  • 49.3k
14 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 ...
amon's user avatar
  • 39k
13 votes
Accepted

Including resources with ambiguous license for GPL application

Generally, the question of whether artwork forms a combined work with software that displays has been addressed in What do I need to share if I include CC-BY-SA artwork in my software?. If your art ...
apsillers's user avatar
  • 36.2k
13 votes

Can I modify an open source license to require that I be notified?

Adding a requirement to notify you when a fork is being made renders a license non-free. The reasoning behind this is that the requirement discriminates against people that, for whatever reason, are ...
Bart van Ingen Schenau's user avatar
13 votes

How can I properly fork a project that is dual-licensed AGPL/Commercial?

Am I right assuming that the AGPL and GPLv3 are compatible? Yes, you can combine them, with the combination effectively being governed by the AGPL v3 license: GPL v3 section 13. Use with the GNU ...
curiousdannii's user avatar
12 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 ...
MadHatter's user avatar
  • 49.3k
12 votes
Accepted

If I add a misrepresentation clause to 3-clause BSD license would it remain GPL-compatible?

Yes, such a license would be compatible with GPL-3.0. In particular, the GPL already has the following terms: Section 5(a) is always required: The work must carry prominent notices stating that you ...
amon's user avatar
  • 39k
12 votes

Is it legal to use GPL code in plugins of a proprietary app?

The Free Software Foundation believes that a plugin may or may not form a single program when combined with the base application, depending on how it works. The plugins you describe are pretty close ...
Kevin's user avatar
  • 5,522
11 votes

If I'm using a GPL 3 library in my project, can I license my project under MIT license?

If I'm using a library that is licensed under GPL v3 in my project, can I license my project under the MIT license? I tried to read the GPL v3 text but I cannot understand it without your assistance. ...
Philippe Ombredanne's user avatar
11 votes

Who owns the rights to a logo contributed to an open-source project?

Assuming you've submitted the logo as a typical inbound=outbound contribution, you still own the copyright on the logo, but you may not forbid anyone else from from using the logo on copyright grounds,...
apsillers's user avatar
  • 36.2k
10 votes

Are CDDL and GPL really incompatible?

From the CDDL announcement https://lwn.net/Articles/114840/ : Like the MPL, the CDDL is not expected to be compatible with the GPL, since it contains requirements that are not in the GPL (for ...
Has QUIT--Anony-Mousse's user avatar
10 votes
Accepted

Can Apple require users to accept the Xcode/iOS license to use git?

Apple is generally very good at being on the verge of legality regarding open source / free software. And they have enough lawyers so that I would be really surprised if one found a clear violation. ...
Zimm i48's user avatar
  • 5,597

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