Pirated Themes and Plugins on Official WordPress Web site

Pirated Themes and Plugins on Official WordPress Site

WordPress.org introduced that plugins and themes which are pirated variations of paid plugins and themes will probably be faraway from the official WordPress repositories. The WordPress neighborhood debated if that strategy violated the WordPress Open Supply GPL license that enables spinoff works to be distributed.

The announcement itself affirmed that premium plugins are developed underneath the GPL that enables the creation of spinoff works. But it surely additionally reserved the fitting to take away the plugins from the official plugin repository.

WordPress Hosts Pirated Themes and Plugins?

Apparently the official WordPress theme and plugin repositories have distributed pirated variations of premium plugins and themes up to now. One developer asserted that WordPress nonetheless does.

A developer claimed he had alerted WordPress to plugin privacy and that WordPress had carried out nothing about it.

“However however… 2 or 3 years in the past I alerted you to a plugin which stole code and features and even ‘word-for-word’ dashboard objects from my plugins and also you didn’t wish to do something…”


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WordPress GPL Open Supply

WordPress states that plugins and themes developed for WordPress that comprise WordPress code are spinoff works. Due to that, these plugins and themes inherit the open supply GPL license.

WordPress explains the GPL license like this:

“GPL is an acronym for GNU Public License. It’s the usual license WordPress makes use of for Open Supply licensing https://wordpress.org/about/license/.

The GPL is a ‘copyleft’ license https://www.gnu.org/licenses/copyleft.en.html.

Because of this spinoff work can solely be distributed underneath the identical license phrases. That is in distinction to permissive free software program licenses, of which the BSD license and the MIT License are broadly used examples.”

It’s clear that anybody is free to create spinoff works primarily based on all plugins and themes which are thought-about spinoff works.

That mentioned, the WordPress.org GNU Public License web page acknowledges there could also be authorized grey areas about what is taken into account a spinoff work.

The WordPress page about the license states:


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“There may be some authorized gray space relating to what is taken into account a spinoff work, however we really feel strongly that plugins and themes are spinoff work and thus inherit the GPL license.”

Pirated Plugins Prohibited from WordPress Repositories

WordPress.org maintains a listing of free plugins and themes which are accessible for obtain. The listing is known as a repository. For instance, the listing the place themes will be downloaded is known as “the official WordPress.org theme repository.”

There may be an approval course of that have to be undergone earlier than getting listed within the repositories. However as soon as a theme or plugin is accredited they’re entered into the WordPress ecosystem and can be found to all WordPress publishers without spending a dime.

Pirated Software program Prohibited on WordPress.org

The announcement mentioned:

“Taking somebody’s pay-for code and re-releasing it as free-of-charge is taken into account to be piracy and isn’t welcome right here.

It doesn’t matter if the code is GPL, it issues than you’re stealing the chance of the unique builders to make a residing, and we really feel that’s detrimental to the neighborhood.

As well as, it’s usually in violation of the phrases you agreed to while you downloaded the plugin from the developer within the first place.

By you doing that, and rehosting right here, you place the whole listing in peril. Arguably we grow to be answerable for your actions. As such, we don’t allow plugins which are bought off WordPress.org to be re-hosted right here.”

WordPress Neighborhood Suggestions

The neighborhood was largely supportive of the intent behind forbidding pirated premium plugin and theme clones. But there was nonetheless some unease about whether or not pirated software program could be authorized and if maybe WordPress.org was overstepping by prohibiting the cloned software program.

One commenter wrote:

“I believe the wording of the publish is problematic, while I typically agree with the sentiment, its references to the GNU GPL v2 and the usage of the time period “piracy” (no ship or boat borne attackers have been concerned) and “stole” (nobody misplaced something they have been entitled to) when persons are exercising a proper outlined within the WordPress venture’s personal philosophy.

…WordPress is distributed underneath the GNU GPLv2, the WordPress venture itself asserts that plugins and modules are “spinoff works”. The GNU GPLv2 explicitly excludes further phrases being utilized to the distribution of supply code.

…The WordPress Tasks philosophy particularly helps redistribution without having to ask permission from its creators.”

Another person asserted that piracy of premium plugins and themes nonetheless represent copyright infringement.


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“Open supply licenses don’t supersede copyright. The unique creator(s) nonetheless has that and if somebody misrepresents the code as their very own, whereas it’s ripped off – or politely put “forked” – from another person’s code, they *are* violating the creator’s copyright.”

The one who revealed the official announcement asserted that the exercise WordPress is banning is certainly a violation of copyright.

He posted:

“These aren’t folks forking and altering code, these are actually folks making a duplicate, the place the one adjustments are to cover who they took the code from. No new options, nothing.”

Watch out for Pirated Plugins and Themes

Some plugins price tons of of {dollars} per 12 months as a result of it takes groups of individuals to develop it. Utilizing such software program deprives these folks of earnings.

It’s tempting to obtain a free WordPress theme or plugin that’s precisely the identical as a premium model that may price 100 {dollars} or extra.

But it’s vital to bear in mind that pirated software program may comprise backdoors and packages designed to take over a web site.


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General it could be a good suggestion for the whole WordPress neighborhood, from software program builders to the publishers who depend on WordPress that rogue software program thieves should not allowed to distribute their pirated plugins and themes from the official WordPress repositories.


Learn the official WordPress Announcement:

Reminder: Forked Premium Plugins Are Not Permitted

supply : searchenginejournal

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