[wp-hackers] Re: Removal Of Over 200 Themes?

Amy Stephen amystephen at gmail.com
Sat Dec 13 03:35:11 GMT 2008

The FSF makes specific distinction of templates from the application.

Both Joomla! and Drupal use the SFLC's guidance and have made statements
that suggest the HTML portion of the template would considered an extension
of the application, but the Javascript, CSS, and images are "data" (as
described in the FSF FAQ) and not extensions of the core code, and therefore
not subject to the same licensing requirements as the core code.

Having said that, this is certainly a gray area, IMO, and is something each
community may decide differently. Personally, I would love to see some
consistency across project boundaries as it would help everyone understand
expectations a bit more clearly.

Also, I think it's really important to separate "code/GPL issues" from
discussions about "what is allowed on property." Those are very different
issues. The word "community" gets bantered about a bit without definition
and sometimes that, too, clouds discussion.

When it comes down to it, it is really important to remember that the GPL
does not entitle more than liberty with the code and it only necessitates
compliance when distributing code.

Policies that custodians establish for their Web site resources and any
methods they choose to use for decision making, communication, and
enforcement are very separate issues. I think one is wise to not assume they
are "entitled" to anything unless there is a contract or a business
arrangement in place.

The GPL and community arrangements are wonderfully fragile and yet strong
working environments. No one is in charge of you and you are not entitled to
anything from them -- other than the requirements of the GPL and any legally
binding business arrangements made. What that does is call into play things
like reputation, relationships, behavior, networking, skill, and in doing so
creates an environment with incredibly low barriers to entry. Great
opportunities, few guarantees, no one standing in your way.

I think in discussions like this, it is assumed IANAL - if you are one -
then you should probably so announce. ;-)

On Fri, Dec 12, 2008 at 9:05 PM, Matt <speedboxer at gmail.com> wrote:

> On Fri, Dec 12, 2008 at 6:18 PM, DD32 <wordpress at dd32.id.au> wrote:
> >> Why is a theme considered a derivative work of WordPress, if it is
> > released separately, but dependent on WordPress?
> >
> > Because it relies upon WordPress, A Derivative work does not need to be
> > distributed with the parent, mearly rely upon it.
> You could actually make a theme that wouldn't be a derivative. By not
> using any template functions, and "simply" getting everything directly
> from the database. Which would mean it could operate without WordPress
> (it would need a WordPress-styled database, but that really has
> nothing to do with licenses) and would not be a derivative. That
> would, of course, be a PITA, but you could do it if you wanted to sell
> a non-GPL-compat theme.
> --
> Matt (http://mattsblog.ca/)
> _______________________________________________
> wp-hackers mailing list
> wp-hackers at lists.automattic.com
> http://lists.automattic.com/mailman/listinfo/wp-hackers

More information about the wp-hackers mailing list