[wp-trac] [WordPress Trac] #16525: Clarification of license for phpatomlib / AtomLib

WordPress Trac wp-trac at lists.automattic.com
Thu Jul 14 12:30:27 UTC 2011

#16525: Clarification of license for phpatomlib / AtomLib
 Reporter:  hakre        |       Owner:
     Type:  enhancement  |      Status:  reopened
 Priority:  normal       |   Milestone:
Component:  General      |     Version:
 Severity:  normal       |  Resolution:
 Keywords:               |

Comment (by hakre):

 Replying to [comment:21 dd32]:
 > > The package was added in August 2007 from  external, it was referenced
 and is now @link'ed in the code.
 > As stated above, Atomlib was originally written for !WordPress, A later
 version was then written (by the author, offered by the author as a patch
 upon their existing work) for !WordPress, which was also released on
 Google Code (under a different license).

 I find it fruitless to just exchange arguments, will write more to that at
 the end. But for the sake of the arguments, they still need to be correct
 in the details:

 From what I can see is that Ellias Torres wrote an "An Atom Publishing
 Protocol implementation for WordPress" (app.php).
 [http://dev.torrez.us/public/2006/wp-app/trunk/app.php That] code was
 released under '''GPL v2 or later''' and has been put into Wordpress while
 wordpress still was released under GPL (not version restricted). That
 means the original commit already technically violated the license. So
 much for the "originally written version" and assumed it was released
 under GPL v2 or later. Keep in mind that Torrez had an SVN of it's own to
 develop the code.

 The later version you talk about has been published on google code under
 an incompatible license and has been "brought in" '''as the changeset
 states'''. In case it was brought in - which is the documentation about
 what was done - there ''technically'' ''is'' a violation. Please mind the

 Making this argument does not mean that I won't trust the general mood of
 goodness about this. I assume it's merely a clarification issue and not

 > The version included in !WordPress is inheritly GPL v2 or later due to
 it's roots in the project, The author excercised their right of releasing
 it under a seperate license on Google code, this does not invalidate the
 license upon which it was included into !WordPress as.

 Well GPL v2 is technically part of the problem. Wordpress was released
 under non-version restricted GPL. If the code had restricted it to GPL v2
 or later, the package was technically not validly licensed any longer.
 Keep in mind that this is pretty a technical side of view. Albeit I'd like
 to clarify it.

 > The fact the link directs to a copy of the code under a different
 license is not a valid point to call the file Apache licensed, as, because
 as noted, it isn't exactly an "External Library" It's a core part of
 WordPress released as a seperate entity.

 The link in there is merely a note of the file's source and putting it
 under the domain of the Atomlib project. That the file has been brought
 into wordpress does not mean that it has been coded for wordpress. The
 fact alone that it has come from some implementation for wordpress into a
 library of it's own with it's own name "atomlib", a definition of a
 project "atomlib" and a website of it's own on google-code is specifically
 a sign that it's not part of wordpress core but an external library.

 Not to forget, that the commit explicitly states, that it brings that
 library in.

 As you can see, there are just contradicting arguments. I never said there
 aren't any contradictions. And I can perfectly see that Torrez was
 actively working with the wordpress community. But as much as for
 everybody within the worpdress community licensing things were unclear, I
 can not assume that all details were clear for Torrez. Instead I'm
 actively suggesting to just ask to clarify this because we can not
 '''document''' that the code was given under GPL (not version restricted).

 The easiest thing I can imagine is to contact the original author and ask
 if the code then and now is available under GPL. Things solved. The
 problem is only complicated as long it has not yet been clarified. That's
 the best answer to all open questions as well, instead of making
 assumptions what was or was not. I think no-one of us can do so. Really.

Ticket URL: <http://core.trac.wordpress.org/ticket/16525#comment:22>
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