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Thursday, April 11 • 4:25pm - 4:40pm
Licensing: It's for All Projects, Yes Even Yours

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With nearly 100 million repositories on GitHub alone, open source projects are proliferating. Yet, few users (~20%) apply a license to their projects. Of those selecting a license, MIT is the clear frontrunner. The selection of the license signals to anyone viewing your project how the base code can be utilized.
There are numerous types of licensing you can apply to your project, so how do you choose? Crosswalks showing various licenses and the differences are available. The biggest driver of license selection is how permissive you wish to be with your project. For instance, you may want others to have free reign on what they can do with your work? Perhaps you want others to make improvements to or use your work, but not create closed source versions? A wide variety of licenses are available to regulate legal usage of your project and recourse available to you if it is used improperly. A recent example of others financially benefiting from open source code to is the generation of art netting nearly $500,000 at auction. The creators of the A.I. model weren’t credited or compensated.
What happens if you don’t select a license? First, you are not required to select a license. If you elect to omit a licence, you retain all rights and default copyright laws apply. Simply put, if the intention is to share your work and allow others to utilize that work, your ability to do so is severely limited and put into question in the absence of a license.

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avatar for Matthew Hendrickson

Matthew Hendrickson

Principal Data Analyst, HelioCampus
Matthew is passionate about data, analytics, and research. Since completing his Doctorate in Law and Policy, with a focus on Data Privacy, he muses over the legal implications of big data. However, he must balance those concerns against the tremendous benefit of amassing and analyzing... Read More →


Thursday April 11, 2019 4:25pm - 4:40pm EDT
Violet Crown: Theater 4 200 W Main St, Charlottesville, VA 22902, USA