Documentation License

There’s been a discussion lately about licensing all the documentation on The community site where WordPress code is created and shared by the users. This is where you can download the source code for WordPress core, plugins and themes as well as the central location for community conversations and organization. The task is to decide under which license we are publishing documentation.

Codex is under GPL v2 and a large part of out current documentation is copied from there. However, since then new Handbooks have been written on CLICLI Command Line Interface. Terminal (Bash) in Mac, Command Prompt in Windows, or WP-CLI for WordPress. is under MIT while REST APIREST API The REST API is an acronym for the RESTful Application Program Interface (API) that uses HTTP requests to GET, PUT, POST and DELETE data. It is how the front end of an application (think “phone app” or “website”) can communicate with the data store (think “database” or “file system”) still has no license but its rep, @kadamwhite, is comfortable with GPLGPL GPL is an acronym for GNU Public License. It is the standard license WordPress uses for Open Source licensing The GPL is a ‘copyleft’ license This means that derivative work can only be distributed under the same license terms. This is in distinction to permissive free software licenses, of which the BSD license and the MIT License are widely used examples..

As GPL is more appropriate license for code we are considering multi-license for documentation. We definitely want to keep GPL in case we need to embed it in WordPress (software), as recommended by @matt. Another license could be more appropriate for documentation; e.g. GFDL or CC0 (under which is Stack Overflow).

While deciding on this matter, we have to answer these questions:

  • How is WordPress documentation used and how it can be used?
  • What are forms of docs distribution?
  • What are freedoms we want to ensure for docs users?
  • What are restrictions, if any, we want to pose on docs users?
  • Did I miss anything?

Please feel free to post your thoughts/questions in comments below. We need as many people involved as possible. Thank you.