Somewhere and might be very often you may have heard of the GPL. But questions arise about what exactly is GPL? Today, in this post we are going to reveal everything about WordPress and GPL.
Let’s go through a basic understanding.
WordPress – WordPress is a popular CMS because it is easy to use and customize. There are thousands of themes and plugins available for WordPress, which allow users to change the look and feel of their website.
GPL – The GNU General Public License is a free, copyleft license for software and other kinds of works. It was written by Richard Stallman in 1989 for his own GNU operating system and is currently administered by the Free Software Foundation (FSF).
Relation between the WordPress and GPL
We are not going to complicate this thing and in a simple way:
WordPress is released under the GPL, which stands for GNU General Public License. Moreover, The GPL is a software license that allows for WordPress to be used and distributed freely. In your life, if you have ever used WordPress in any way is because it is released under the GPL License which is released free of cost.
The GPL is a copyleft license, which means that derivative works can only be distributed under the same license terms.GPL LICENSE 3.0
But why is WordPress distribuiting freely?
The co-founder of WordPress, Matt Mullenweg, is arguably one of the world’s leading voices on ‘free software’. He established WordPress.com with a clear mission: to “democratize publishing”. The tenets of GPL mean a great deal to him (as you will discover).
“If WordPress were a country, our Bill of Rights would be the GPL
because it protects our core freedoms.”
Co-founder of WordPress
The philosophy behind the Open Source software movement is that software is not like other tangible products. Once the software is released, it can have multiple copies with little cost.. WordPress never would have existed without the concept of free software.
secret Wordpress was originally a fork of b2/cafelog, which was ‘free software’ itself.
What makes GPL different from other licenses?
The core concepts of the GPL are
- The freedom to run the program for any purpose.
- The freedom to study the source code and change the software for any purpose.
- The freedom to share the software with others.
- The freedom to share your own modified versions of the software with others.
GPL affords the “freedom to utilize, modify and distribute the software (and any ‘derivative’ works)”, what does that mean for premium WordPress themes and plugins, which one might reasonably assume to be ‘derivative’ of WordPress?
In theory, WordPress’ GPL licensing means two things for those who seek to create ‘derivative’ products:
- Anyone is free to utilize, modify and distribute your products without restriction.
- The only value developer can offer is premium support and automatic updates.