A free license or open license [1] is a license agreement which contains provisions that allow other individuals to reuse another creator's work.

When the work is software, it would be free software if its users have four freedoms [2]:

  • freedom 0. The freedom to run the program for any purpose.
  • freedom 1. The freedom to study how the program works, and change it to make it do what you wish.
  • freedom 2. The freedom to redistribute and make copies so you can help your neighbour.
  • freedom 3. The freedom to improve the program, and release your improvements (and modified versions in general) to the public, so that the whole community benefits.

Without a special license, these uses are normally prohibited by copyright law or commercial license. Most free licenses are worldwide, royalty-free, non-exclusive, and perpetual (see copyright durations). Free licenses are often the basis of crowdsourcing and crowdfunding projects.

For more information and information about various types of open licenses, see the source of above summary [3], a list of conformant licenses at the Open Knowledge Foundation[4], and the child items of this page.

1. Open Definition 2.1 on opendefinition.org. Retrieved 14 November 2020
2. Free Software Foundation. "What is free software?". Retrieved 14 November 2020.
3. Free license, Wikipedia. Retrieved 14 November 2020.
4. Open Definition: Conformant Licenses, Open Knowledge Foundation. Retrieved 14 November 2020.

The backlinks below usually do not include the child and sibling items, nor the pages in the breadcrumbs.

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