[wp-hackers] WordPress and 'LinkWare'

Vinicius Provenzano viniciusxp at gmail.com
Mon Sep 25 17:42:01 GMT 2006

As you said, If the themes are GPL'd you can drop the link if you want. IMHO
it's themes can be very difficult to "license" in the real world, and track
these licenses is something I can't figure out how it will be. There is, the
code is "licensed", but if i rewrite it from scratch to have the same look
and feel am I breaking the license?

It's so weird linkware licensing...

2006/9/23, Petit <petit at petitpub.com>:
> Roy Schestowitz wrote:
> > Not so long ago, links that are embedded in themes were discussed.
> > Particularly, links that went beyond crediting the author got flagged
> > as a possible 'grey area'. I just wanted to draw your attention to the
> > following item which has just reached NewsForge.
> >
> > Linkware licenses can go awry
> >
> > ,----[ Snippet ]
> > | The other day I was browsing WordPress Planet and noticed a link to 31
> > | free WordPress themes from WordPress Diva. Of course, the "free" is as
> > | in beer, and the license requires that you display two links
> > embedded in
> > | the theme "as long as the theme is in use." I don't mean to pick on
> > Diva
> > | in particular, but I would like to illustrate why these sorts of
> > | "linkware" licenses, or licenses requiring reciprocal links, can be a
> > | bad idea.
> > |
> > | On the surface, it's not particularly onerous to ask a user to
> > provide a
> > | link back to the person(s) who developed a theme or Web application.
> > | WordPress Diva, for example, is providing some nice-looking themes,
> > | and is only asking for a link back to theme's Web page and to another
> > | site promoting furniture. They're tiny, unobtrusive links at the
> bottom
> > | of the page, well out of the way. Why would this be a bad thing?
> > `----
> The article makes some very good points, especially about the volatile
> state of URL:s, and on the question of what
> should be done, if I want to change the theme and then redistribute it -
> should the links stay?
> I don't think that we, meaning wordpress.org or ditto.com, can set rules
> against linkware licensed themes or plugins.
> Anyone is free to offer addons to WordPress with any license they fancy,
> as long as they are not offered as GPL'd.
> The original question was, I believe, if wordpress.org or .com should
> promote themes with ( mandatory ) links, and
> here we may well have a rule, not to do that. I think we shouldn't.
> If themes or plugins are offered under the GPL, anyone is free to add or
> remove links, but the grey zone remains.
> The problem here is that many users of a theme don't bother or doesn't
> know how to remove a link in the footer.
> For the link back to the authors site, I like it to be there, so I can
> contact the author.
> /Petit
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Vinícius Provenzano

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