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Bundling WordPress in proprietary software might be a GPL violation

Hi there,

According to this thread, Local is proprietary software.

Since WordPress is licensed under the GPL, and you’re distributing it in a proprietary app, can you tell us where the details of Locals license can be found?

It looks to me like WordPress is not bundled within the software - Local by Flywheel actually goes out and downloads the latest version of WordPress in real-time, for each new install. It doesn’t include it in the software or redistribute it.

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That’s not entirely accurate - WordPress is bundled.

Here’s the developer explaining how it works:

Local is set to download directly from https://wordpress.org/latest.zip. Before doing this though, Local sends out a ping to api.wordpress.org to check if you have a connection and if their site isn’t down. If the ping fails then it uses the included version of WordPress (currently 4.6.x).

I’ve bolded the important part as it states that the app does include a version of WordPress, which they are redistributing.

You can check this yourself :

  1. Download the latest beta.

  2. Look in /Applications/Local by Flywheel.app/Contents/Resources/extraResources/virtual-machine/vendor/WordPress

You’ll see that an old version is bundled there. Its only used if the ping fails or if a user is offline, but it is bundled and redistributed as part of a proprietary app.

Good catch, Laura, thanks!

I’m unable to find any concrete license details for Local on this site or in the app itself, which could be an oversight on my end. When they have been asked what their license is, they say it’s proprietary without providing any further details.

Everything may very well be GPL kosher, but they should have details of their own license on their site, in the app, or available when requested. They need to provide more details than stating “it’s proprietary” when asked.

The license should specify which parts of the app are proprietary, and what restrictions there are on those parts.

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