[theme-reviewers] Licensing of photos used in themes

Dion Hulse (dd32) wordpress at dd32.id.au
Wed Dec 7 04:35:42 UTC 2011

On 7 December 2011 15:12, Angelo Bertolli <angelo.bertolli at gmail.com> wrote:
> Ian Stewart wrote:
>> I was traipsing through the theme directory theme by theme as I am
>> sometimes wont to do and happened upon this theme with a beautiful header
>> image.
>> http://wordpress.org/extend/themes/silent-film
>> It looked like a stock photo to me and made me wonder if the original
>> license of the stock photo (if it is one) allowed it to be made free and if
>> that's something being checked on in theme reviews (and in this theme in
>> particular).
> It is my understanding that photos are not required to be put under the GPL,
> as they are not themselves derivative works.
> This doesn't mean that such a photo is licensed to be distributed though...

Correct, Some people will subscribe to the notion that only the Theme
PHP code is required to be GPL - this is a accepted licensing opinion
from what I'm aware of - Lets not go into this battle here however, as
it's a moot point:

Submission to the WordPress.org Themes repository however has a much
stricter licensing arrangement, ALL of the theme - PHP, JS, CSS, Flash
Objects, Fonts, Icons, and most importantly in this case Images, MUST
be GPL licensed, or under a GPL-compatible license.
This is covered under the Theme Review guidelines:

This allows for WordPress.org org to be a repository of Plugins and
Themes which are 100% GPL'd, with Zero restrictions placed on usage.
By all means, You should be able to take images from any theme on
WordPress.org and use it in a GPL-compliant manner without license

More information about the theme-reviewers mailing list