Premium WordPress Themes and the GPL Discussions
In early 2008 I used to write regular premium news posts which included links to discussions within the WordPress community about the future of premium themes, and it seemed like every few days a new issue would be raised for debate.
The debate seemed to have quietened down recently until a few days ago when over 200 themes were culled from the theme directory at wordpress.org. It was revealed that some of these free GPL themes had been removed for linking (via the designer’s credit) to sites selling premium themes, a fact which has sparked a great deal of debate from a range of perspectives. The inclusion criteria for the theme directory has also been changed to include the following statement: “Themes for sites that support non-GPL (or compatible) themes or violate the WordPress community guidelines themes will not be approved.”
Here are some sites I’ve come across which have been discussing these decisions:
- Spectacula: WordPress.org Pull 200 GPL Themes
- Justin Tadlock: Automattic putting the boot to premium theme developers
- Alister Cameron: Matt Mullenweg, WordPress, GPL and why I think he really gets it.
- ProBlogging: WordPress Targets Premium Designers for Deletion
- The Blog Herald: 200 Themes Removed From WordPress.org – Matt Explains Why
- wordpress™ wank: here we go again
- The Inquistr: More Hypocrisy from Mullenweg and WordPress with new themes jihad
- Omninoggin: Are Premium WordPress Plugins/Themes Unethical?
- XFEP: WordPress’ “GPL” and Theme Mess
- Blogjer: WordPress.org say no to premium, non-GPL complient theme
- Fun with WordPress: What’s the point of community
Matt Mullenweg, the creator of WordPress, has submitted comments to some of the above posts, but I was intrigued to discover that he will be meeting with Jeff Chandler for a special WordPress Weekly later today (Thursday) at 1pm EST to discuss the whole saga.
Fun with WordPress: Careful, I’m licensed to thrill
Justin Tadlock: Some thoughts on the WordPress community, themes, and the GPL
Kristarella: WordPress and the GNU General Public License
WhatIThink: WordPress and the GPL