tl;dr – If you use a tool to generate code (be that a website that generates settings pages, or something complex like an AI to build the whole plugin A plugin is a piece of software containing a group of functions that can be added to a WordPress website. They can extend functionality or add new features to your WordPress websites. WordPress plugins are written in the PHP programming language and integrate seamlessly with WordPress. These can be free in the WordPress.org Plugin Directory https://wordpress.org/plugins/ or can be cost-based plugin from a third-party), remember that YOU are responsible for licensing.
All code hosted on WordPress.org 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. https://wordpress.org/ has to be GPL GPL is an acronym for GNU Public License. It is the standard license WordPress uses for Open Source licensing https://wordpress.org/about/license/. The GPL is a ‘copyleft’ license https://www.gnu.org/licenses/copyleft.en.html. 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. Compatible. This is not in doubt. More and more people are using tools to build code for them, based on bare-bones input. With the advent of ChatGPT, this has become more popular.
To be clear here: There is no guideline AGAINST using generated code.
You’re welcome to use whatever tool you want to build plugins. That said, you are 100% responsible for that code if you chose to host it here. This is not a change to any guideline, merely a reminder that if you claim it’s your code, you are responsible for it.
But the important bit here is that if means if ChatGPT, for example, built your plugin, you have to verify that all the code used is GPL compatible. Just like you are expected to validate licenses on libraries and code-snippets, everything in your plugin has to be GPL compatible. Should we determine that your code is a copy of someone else’s or includes code from non-GPL plugins, your submission will be rejected and any live plugins will be closed.
Sadly this has already become a small issue, as people asked an AI to build a ‘scroll to top’ plugin and it literally copied code from another, existing, plugin hosted on WordPress.org. Actually five times. And they were all rejected since it was pretty obvious.
Now before someone asks, yes it’s fine to fork code. You have to credit them, however, and that’s something those AIs have been pretty bad at doing. Also remember that the AI can tell you how to submit a plugin and be wrong. And by wrong I mean totally, 100%, that was really some bad advice someone got wrong. Make sure you double check. Robots won’t take our jobs yet.
If you submit code, it’s your responsibility. Nothing’s changed.