Subject: Re: Question regarding modules/pluggins license?
From: Ian Lance Taylor <>
Date: 01 Mar 2004 09:34:46 -0500

Larry Masters <> writes:

> I currently work on an open source project that uses the GPL for a
> license. The project is written in PHP and uses modules/pluggins. The
> project has an API  that other developers can use to create these
> modules/pluggins so they work within the framework of the
> project. Questions and many comments have been raised as to how the
> modules/pluggins have to be licensed. Some feel that since they use
> the published API that they have to be GPL. Others feel that they can
> be licensed however the developer chooses be it a open source license
> or a "closed source" license.

The best approach is certainly for you, the core developers, to decide
which you want to be true, and to spell that out explicitly in the

In the general case, there are more or less convincing arguments on
both sides.  I don't think that anybody can definitively say which is
correct, because it hinges on the definition of when one piece of
software is a derived work of another, which is not a settled legal

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