[theme-reviewers] GPL and limiting usage

Otto otto at ottodestruct.com
Fri Sep 20 20:08:56 UTC 2013

On Fri, Sep 20, 2013 at 3:03 PM, Bryan Hadaway <bhadaway at gmail.com> wrote:
> I think that's the biggest disconnect of confusion. You might think that,
> but any theme developer can tell you that they jumped through some serious
> hoops to get their theme approved. I personally had to modify a pro theme of
> mine heavily to be 100% GPL compatible and is the same for lots of
> developers who have free themes in the repo and also sell pro themes, again,
> why should there ever be an exception?


If people have been misunderstanding what "GPL" actually means, and
telling you incorrect things about "100% GPL Compatible" and such,
then I'm sorry. I understand that many people, reviewers included,
misuse the term and don't fully grasp the underlying principles.

To be 100% GPL you must a) create all the resources in the theme
yourself, or have licenses for them that are GPL-compatible, and b)
state "this code is licensed under the terms of the GPL".  That is all
there is to it. No "code changes" are ever be relevant in
GPL-compatibility, except in the case where you're using somebody
else's code (like a library) that is incompatibly licensed.

*The behavior of code has absolutely no bearing on what its licensing can be.*

Now, the review requirements go far beyond GPL, and that's fair
enough. But there is no real case where you would ever need to "modify
a pro theme heavily" to be GPL-Compatible. Whoever told you that this
was the reason was mistaken.


More information about the theme-reviewers mailing list