"WordPress Plugins Cheap" - Plugins & Themes Re-selling and GPL

This is for vovafeldman

  1. link doesn’t work
  2. I can summarize GPL WP Plugins…I can copy it to my server and offer it for free. That is the freedom given by GPL, which all themes/plugins for WordPress inherit.

Essentially, I can buy a plugin for a single site and use it on all my other sites without buying a “dev license”.

Now morally and ethically…that is a different conversation.

No amount of paragraphs on your extensive article will “cancel” my GPL rights. Again, link doesn’t work for me.

  1. Maybe you are using an old browser version that does not support the new SSL protocols, I just updated the link to HTTP.
  2. You can offer the code, but you cannot use my trademarked plugin’s name nor any of the copyrighted material (logo, illustrations, etc.), and that’s the problem with trolls.
  3. Yes, you can get a plugin in any way you want and use it wherever you like :slightly_smiling:
  4. The “amount of paragraphs” I wrote provide an actionable guide to help developers protect their plugin business against trolls that illegally distribute plugins/themes using trademarked and/or copyrighted material.

I clicked just now on your last reply and the original link, both work. I am using the same browser as I did the first time.

@vovafeldman I have brought up this issue for discussion on the #plugins-review channel, and I concluded there are basically two options:

  • WordPress changes its license to BSD or something else, not copyleft, for future versions
  • WordPress, as the copyright holder, assumes that plugins are separate work (not a derivative work) as per the GPL2 interpretation, thus not bound to GPL2 license. They can still require plugins to be GPL compliant to be listed on the WordPress Plugin Directory.

I don’t know if option number 2 has legal grounds, though. I’m not sure if someone can say otherwise, even if WordPress assumes this instance.

GPL2 states:

If identifiable sections of that work are not derived from the Program, and can be reasonably considered independent and separate works in themselves, then this License, and its terms, do not apply to those sections when you distribute them as separate works.

Either way, by the looks of the conversation I had on Slack, it is clear that WordPress employees that get paid top-notch salaries for working on GPL2 software are not so keen to the calvary of WordPress shops such as ourselves - we either mobilize the WordPress companies environment for a solution, or nothing will change.

Here’s the link to the #plugins-review discussion I cite on this answer, which has interesting arguments: https://wordpress.slack.com/archives/C1LBM36LC/p1607960096262300

Edit: I have posted about this on the Advanced WordPress Group, feel free to continue this conversation here or there: https://www.facebook.com/groups/advancedwp/permalink/3775755309153322