Talking Drupal #132 -Drupal Licensing GPL

November 9, 2016

Recorded the day after the US Presidential Election, John , Nick and I were a bit tired after watching election results throughout the night, but energized for a discussion with Kevin Reynen about Drupal Licensing. A recent community ‘conversation’ between WordPress and Wix sparked our interest to talk about the GPL. If you are making money with Open Source software, you should pay attention to licensing.





  • What is the Drupal Licensing Working Group?
  • Everything committed to Drupal repo has to be compatible with GPL v2
  • What is the GPL? Based on Richard Stallman’s set of four freedoms:
    • The freedom to run the program, for any purpose
    • The freedom to study how the program works, and change it so it does your computing as you wish
    • The freedom to redistribute copies so you can help your neighbor
    • The freedom to distribute copies of your modified versions, giving the community a chance to benefit from your changes
  • What is the difference between copyright and licensing
    • You can claim copyright of a module you write, which means the others must attribute you are the source of original author. The GPL allows other to distribute and modify that code.
  • What does distribution mean and what triggers the distribution clause?
    • As is relates to work for hire
    • As is related to SaaS
    • As is relates to the contract you are hired under
    • Distribution vs Convery
  • Can you sell a module or theme? YES!
  • Licensing - Drupal interfacing with other products (licenses) - ie. FontAwesome, CiviCRM, CKEditor in Core, AMP
  • Major differences between GPL v2 and GPL v3, AGPL
  • GPL and the use of GitHub
  • Distributions, Drupal 8, Composure and licensing
  • How is licensing monitored
  • Wordpress and Wix recap


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