Knowledge base

What is GPL?

GPL or General Public License, sometimes also called GNU GPL, is that the most ordinarily used free software license. it had been written by Richard Stallman of Free Software Foundation for GNU Project. This license allows the software to be freely used, modified, and redistributed by anyone. WordPress is additionally released under the GPL license, which suggests that WordPress is open-source software that will be used, modified, and extended by anyone.
The WordPress project considers GPL license to be its philosophical equivalent of the bill of rights. It provides the core basic values that the project believes in.

  • Anyone can download and run the software
  • Anyone can modify it
  • Anyone can redistribute free copies of the software
  • Anyone can distribute modified versions of the software.

One of the first aspects of the GPL is that it uses something referred to as copyleft. Copyleft may be a play on the word copyright, but the concept is extremely similar. Basically, it uses copyright law to guard modified versions of a piece but requires equivalent protections to be applied to those versions. For this reason, any work-supported WordPress inherits the GPL license. This has caused some controversy as some companies and individuals tried to sell WordPress Themes and Plugins under non-compliant licenses. However, there’s a robust sentiment among the community to guard the WordPress bill of rights. The WordPress project co-founder Matt Mullenweg is extremely vocal about it.