Code - License

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1 - About

Whether free or not, resources normally come with a license to ensure fair use.

Rather than establishing verbal agreements, I can distribute my work with a license that sets the guidelines for use. The things that are copyrighted are sometimes referred to as “intellectual property.”

The MIT license is perhaps the most open of all. It effectively puts the work in the public domain. It explicitly gives permission, “without restriction, including without limitation the rights to use, copy, modify, merge, publish, distribute, sub license, and/or sell copies of the Software.” The only condition is that the full copyright notice (which declares no warranty or liability) be included. Work released under the MIT license can be used for anything, including commercial and proprietary software.

2 - Open Source

Free and open-source software (FOSS).

in 1998, the free software foundation was re-branded it to “open source initiative” to emphasize the business potential of sharing and collaborating on software source code.

The benefits of using FOSS can include:

  • decreasing software costs,
  • increasing security and stability (especially in regard to malware),
  • protecting privacy,
  • and giving users more control over their own hardware

There's no such thing as a free (software) lunch by Jay Michaelson, Wasabi Systems - What every developer should know about open source licensing


3 - Glossary

3.1 - Share-alike

Share-alike is a copyright licensing term, originally used by the Creative Commons project, to describe works or licences that require copies or adaptations of the work to be released under the same or similar licence as the original

Free content and software licences without the share-alike requirement are described as permissive licences.

3.2 - Copyleft

Copyleft (a play on the word copyright) is also known as:

  • libre share-alike.
  • or reciprocal license

Copyleft licenses are free (content or software) licenses with a share-alike condition.

It is the practice of offering people the right to freely distribute copies and modified versions of a work with the stipulation that the same rights be preserved in derivative works down the line.

Example of Licenses that are copyleft:

  • for free content: the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike licences
  • for free software: the GNU General Public License.

3.3 - Permissive

A Permissive software license is also known under the term:

  • BSD-like
  • or BSD-style license,

Well-known examples of permissive free software licenses include:

  • the MIT License (Do what you want, just gives attribution),
  • BSD licenses
  • and the Apache license.

As of 2015, the most popular FOSS license is the permissive MIT license.[3][4]


4 - List

4.1 - Copyleft

4.1.1 - GPL

  • Software under the GPLv3 licence need to be licenced under the GPLv3 licences. It goes in one direction. It's a copyleft licenses. You cannot include a GPLv3 in a closed software. See
  • An advertising clause is incompatible with the GPL, which does not allow the addition of restrictions beyond those it already imposes

4.1.2 - BSD

  • BSD (Berkeley Software Distribution (BSD) - unix like distribution)

4.1.3 - LGPL

The LGPL license (GNU Lesser General Public License):

  • every change made to the platform code must also be distributed under LGPL.
  • External programs that talk to the code through other means don't have to be LGPL, any license is acceptable. This includes custom components, plugins, ….

5 - Documentation / Reference