This article is about free software licenses which can be used to release your works including bash scripts, and complete software for almost any creative work. In the face of dispute, whether the particular country’s court will respect all the written sentences or not mainly depends on the bare acts of that country plus the judges as humans.
Essentially the result of a quarrel or “dispute” can not be predicted BUT what the court does is prevent gross violations when there is an attached, widely known license. You can write a license yourself, but that becomes informal and a court may completely ignore depending on the language.
Your lawyer has to argue with the judge, “Sir, my client already attached a GNU GPL 3.0 license, which is a widely used license in free software development.” If you add an odd own license, the opponent may find out flaws and render it useless.
Our option to select a free software license is usually between three and four. Among them, GNU GPL 3.0 and Apache License 2.0 are commonly used. There are four fundamental freedoms of free software:
- Freedom to use the software;
- The freedom to study the software;
- The freedom to copy the software;
- The freedom to modify the software and redistribute the modified versions.
When we say “GPL compatible” it means that a GPL project can use a project with that license. Apache License 2.0 is GPL 3.0 compatible (but not compatible with GPL 2.0).
Suppose, you have read our published guide and using this repository from GitHub. It is a too simple and basic project. Both GNU GPL 3.0 and Apache License 2.0 are suitable for this project.
GRSEC costs more than $2000/month but their license is GNU GPL 2.0:
The license is making you or me impossible to sell it to our customers. Because they have the manpower to continuously update the source code. If you or I sell it to our clients at $200 per month, the clients will eventually stop paying us. We can not modify their trademark. We will fail to keep it updated on par with them. The license is forcing one to be a specialist in the thing to remain in the competition. GNU GPL is very powerful to protect our rights while it is open for normal usage, even using for customers.
The Apache 2.0 license requires us to keep the license file, and the NOTICE file (if there is such), we have to show notice for modified files. The difference with GNU GPL 3.0 is it solves the restrictions of patent-related matters. It is easy for the companies such as Google, Twitter to use.
GPL is good for individuals (and also companies). A larger company can not abuse your charity. Linux and WordPress use GNU GPL licenses. For example, I or you can not “debrand” WordPress and sell it as proprietary software as they are under GNU GPL-ed software.
Apache 2.0 may be a good alternative if you are a company. In this case, you need a discussion with your lawyer.