License clarification #7293

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ashfurrow opened this Issue Jul 17, 2016 · 51 comments

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ashfurrow commented Jul 17, 2016

Good morning! I came across this blog post which says that the BSD license of React is terminated if a React user competes with Facebook, as per the patent clause addition. There seems to be a lot of confusion around what the clause actually means, so I was wondering if you might consider adding a tl;dr summarizing the clause and it's motivation in the readme. This would clear a lot of confusion up and let everyone focus more on building cool stuff. Thanks!


Update from Maintainers

We worked with our legal team to post a FAQ addressing the most common misconceptions.

Member

gaearon commented Jul 17, 2016

The best I can do for now is to link to this post: Updating Our Open Source Patent Grant.
I’ll ask if our lawyers have anything to add to this. Cheers!

Wonderful, thanks for the quick response!

As an additional information, here is the diff between v1 an v2

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gaearon commented Jul 18, 2016

This is the reason why both Google and Microsoft employees are not allowed to use React.js in their work - according to Rob Eisenberg, creator of the Aurelia framework

This claim is false.

I can’t speak to the author’s motives but a simple fact check reveals that Microsoft recently released (and is actively working on) React Native for Windows. It is obviously using React, and is developed by Microsoft employees. And it was announced on Windows Blog. So not only Microsoft allows their employees to use React, it also encourages third-party developers to build apps for their platform with React. (Update: new version of Skype is built with React.)

Google was unhappy with the original patent grant, and it was updated in response to their concerns. They are OK with it now. And so is Apple.

A few relevant discussions:

jdubois commented Jul 18, 2016

There is indeed a lot of stupid things said about this patent grant, but still that doesn't mean that there isn't a couple of big issues here:

  • Software patents are awfully complex. I have no idea what would happen in court, and I don't want to know. The best solution to avoid problems with software patents, is to avoid them in the first place.
  • As a developer, I have no idea what my clients are doing in their business. During the last hour I worked for a very large energy provider. My job is to make software that works for their use-case (something that is vital for many people, trust me), and that should still be working in the next 15 years (it's running on proprietary hardware, in secured locations). And we're doing this with AngularJS. Now imagine we chose React: who knows what this client and its subsidiaries are going to do in the next 15 years? Not me. I don't even work in that company. Now imagine they have one "bad" subsidiary, in a couple of years, that is a patent troll - even if I hate this, it's their perfect right, as a business, to do this. And that means they would lose the license to use their software.
Contributor

syranide commented Jul 18, 2016

@jdubois I'm not part of Facebook and this is my entirely private opinion, nor am I a lawyer.

Software patents are awfully complex. I have no idea what would happen in court, and I don't want to know. The best solution to avoid problems with software patents, is to avoid them in the first place.

That's how the industry is, so Facebook needs to cover their asses and they're giving you an assurance that they can't come after you for it, even if they have relevant and enforceable patents. If there are actual nefarious side-effects of the extra patent clause, then fine, but please bring something concrete and actionable. I'm as interested as you, but developers despise patents, businesses require them.

And that means they would lose the license to use their software.

So then "you" would explicitly license the relevant patents from Facebook (if there even are any), restructure your company in some clever way, or just modify the React codebase to skirt the patents, same as it always has been. You sue if you believe you end up with a winning hand after tallying up plus and minuses, you don't bite the hand that feeds you. To be clear, it wouldn't even matter if you used an alternative to React, the patents could apply just as well to any alternatives you decide to use. Frameworks increasingly learn from each other, so in all likelihood, a subset of the hypothetical patents that apply to React would likely apply to AngularJS as well by now and any framework you would implement yourself that is remotely inspired by popular frameworks.

What I don't get is why everyone is so hung up on Facebook being the bad guy in this, if I were you I would be much more concerned with PatentTrolls Inc having some vague patent that can be applied to React or w/e. That is an unknown that you are never going to get an answer to until they show up at your doorstep. No BSD-license is not going to protect you from that. There are numerous examples and cases involving exactly that in the past and right now.

I don't mean to stir the pot. I have my own business and am using React extensively, it has been a tremendous benefit. I see a hundred ways of ending up in shitty legal trouble in the future, suing Facebook and them revoking my license to patents relevant to our use of React is not even on my radar.

jdubois commented Jul 18, 2016

You sue if you believe you end up with a winning hand after tallying up plus and minuses, you don't bite the hand that feeds you-> you didn't understand my use case, so let me re-phrase.

  • I'm a consultant working for a big company, a few days this month. I will have finished this work this week, but my client is supposed to use my work for 10 to 15 years.
  • Maybe some part of my client, which is a giant company, might sue Facebook on a patent issue at some point in time the future. Probably on something totally different from React, but who knows what all those giants companies have in mind.
  • In that case, this client wouldn't be able to use the app I developed for him, which would be a major issue for them. They won't be able to "restructure" or "modify the React codebase" as you say: this app will be deployed in secured, remote locations, and it would cost an insane amount of money to update.

I think at the very least you should warn your clients before delivering an app with such a specific license.

Member

aweary commented Jul 18, 2016

I think at the very least you should warn your clients before delivering an app with such a specific license.

Not to be rude, but isn't that your responsibility? The license is clearly outlined in this repo, if you or your client have these concerns it would seem like something you should be discussing with their legal team before starting the project.

I understand that the license can be confusing for developers, but it's not really meant for developers. It's a legal document that should be reviewed by a legal counsel and considered--in each case--within the context of the company/consumer's legal standings.

I think it's also important to realize that any clarifications/summarizations of the license make them potentially more legally ambiguous, so it's understandable that Facebook might be hesitant or careful about it.

jdubois commented Jul 18, 2016

No you are not rude: I perfectly agree with you, it's the developer's responsibility. It's the whole point of my comment.
Please note I'm not a ReactJS user, I just commented on the discussion here because I happened to have retweeted a specific blog post on this matter, and I had like 3 people telling me to read the license. So I did it, and I believe people should do the same.

I'm no lawyer but, as far as I can see, this bit of the article is mistaken: "Because of the patent clause you are not allowed to do anything that constitutes as competing with Facebook. ". There also seem to be other inaccuracies.

However, this bit in bold does seem to be true (in relation to a patent assertion): "If you do take legal actions or in other ways challenge Facebook, your license to use React is immediately revoked."

Here's an extract from the license which is pretty easy to understand even if you're not a lawyer:

"The license granted hereunder will terminate, automatically and without notice, if you (or any of your subsidiaries, corporate affiliates or agents) initiate directly or indirectly, or take a direct financial interest in, any Patent Assertion: (i) against Facebook or any of its subsidiaries or corporate affiliates, (ii) against any party if such Patent Assertion arises in whole or in part from any software, technology, product or service of Facebook or any of its subsidiaries or corporate affiliates, or (iii) against any party relating to the Software."

So, as long as you're unlikely to make a patent assertion against Facebook, your license is unlikely to ever be revoked. At least, that's how I understand it.

Member

gaearon commented Jul 18, 2016

Do you interpret “the license hereunder” in PATENTS file as referring to a license in another file?

I am a noob in license issues and my assertions might look dumb. But I am crazy for react and the recent license confusions are getting me.

So can I infer

  1. if I compete with facebook, it wont terminate my use of react
  2. if I initiate a patent assertion against facebook, it will terminate my use of react

Now I am confused about this
3. if I violate a patent of facebook, will it terminate my use of react?

@gaearon “the license hereunder” in PATENTS refers to the "Software" which in turn "... means the React software distributed by Facebook, Inc." as stated at https://github.com/facebook/react/blob/master/PATENTS. Not sure if you're suggesting otherwise?

@nadimtuhin as I mentioned, I'm not a lawyer but, from my understanding, here's my opinion:

  1. if I compete with facebook, it wont terminate my use of react
    -- Correct
  2. if I initiate a patent assertion against facebook, it will terminate my use of react
    -- Correct
  3. if I violate a patent of facebook, will it terminate my use of react?
    -- It doesn't say that anywhere that I have seen. But, if you violate a Facebook patent, the loss of your React license may be the least of your problems anyway ;)
Owner

zpao commented Jul 18, 2016

Still not a lawyer but some clarifications based on my understanding…

@nadimtuhin:

  1. if I initiate a patent assertion against facebook, it will terminate my use of react

Terminating the use of React is at your discretion. At that point the patents license would terminate but you still have a completely valid BSD license to use React. At that point though, if there are patents covered by React, you would be exposed to a counterclaim.

  1. if I violate a patent of facebook, will it terminate my use of react?

Directly from the grant:

Notwithstanding the foregoing, if Facebook or any of its
subsidiaries or corporate affiliates files a lawsuit alleging patent
infringement against you in the first instance, and you respond by filing a
patent infringement counterclaim in that lawsuit against that party that is
unrelated to the Software, the license granted hereunder will not terminate
under section (i) of this paragraph due to such counterclaim.

My understanding is that the patent license does not terminate if FB sues you.

It's also worth noting that this is an evolution of a very similar patent license in the Apache License, albeit with slightly more defensive angle.


I'm going to close this out because there is nothing actionable here.

@zpao zpao closed this Jul 18, 2016

Contributor

bjrmatos commented Jul 19, 2016

I think that a blog post (maybe from facebook's lawyers) with some clarifications will help a lot, you know, everyone say "im not a lawyer" but that doesn't help :(

I'm teaching react to some friends and companies and they really love react but when someone ask about react's patents i don't have a good answer, talking about lawyers and patents in a conference or local meetup is just scary. I think this topic affects React's adoption and impact its usage

@gaearon do you still gonna ask to facebook's lawyers for some clarifications?

as a React fan, seeing post ranting on React patents and seeing bad responses makes me sad, so any clarification from FB in this topic will help a lot

jdubois commented Jul 19, 2016

After watching "the Social Network", I'm not sure we should trust Facebook's lawyers :-)

@zpao I understand the discussion went off the rails, I certainly apologize for distracting everyone from more productive work, but I disagree that this issue isn't actionable. @gaearon was going to check in with the lawyers about a tl;dr that could be added to the readme to clarify the clause and its motivation, which I think would help dispel a lot of the confusion around the license. Would you consider re-opening the issue until we hear back? Maybe we could lock it to prevent developers from drive-by lawyering.

Member

gaearon commented Jul 19, 2016

I talked with the lawyers, and @zpao’s clarification is the best we can give at the moment.

Facebook has been open sourcing many more projects in the last few years, and having protection against patent trolls is one of the reasons we have been comfortable doing it. Narrowing this protection would make us much more cautious releasing something (e.g. React itself might not have been released if the lawyers thought it was risky).

As said before, major companies like Google, Microsoft, and Apple, don’t have any problems with the patent grant. It is up to you to consider the upsides and downsides, consult with the lawyers, and make an informed decision.

I will refer you again to the discussions on the subject:

https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=12108158

https://www.reddit.com/r/javascript/comments/4sxexm/reacts_driven_by_facebook_principle_concerns_me/d5d4ted

After watching "the Social Network", I'm not sure we should trust Facebook's lawyers :-)

Now that’s a good way to make legal decisions! 👍

@gaearon Thanks for getting back to me – I appreciate it. It's an imperfect world we live in, and it may just be that this is something developers are perennially confused by.

Thanks again for taking my issue seriously, and for the work the entire React team puts into this project and the community.

jdubois commented Jul 19, 2016

@gaearon Joke apart, trusting another company's lawyer isn't a good way to make legal decisions. If you believe lawyers are honest and neutral...

I have many questions on variety of my assumptions.
So, first of all, I would like to clarify two questions, below.

  1. Does facebook think that the solo BSDL grant some patent execution?
  2. What are the additional permissions granted under the PATENTS?

adeelzaman commented Aug 19, 2016

@gaearon mentioned that Microsoft/Google/Apple are using React for various projects.

However, if in the future, Facebook was to let's say infringe on a VR patent by Microsoft and Microsoft had to initiate legal action against them, all the hard work on the React project they worked on would have gone to waste, as their license to React would be revoked.

Is this correct? I assume Microsoft, Google, Apple etc. believe the risk of this scenario isn't high enough to not use React currently?

The response I have heard to this is that arguably this scenario could also occur over any other OSS. Many large corporations that release OSS often own patents that cover parts of their OSS so if you get in a legal battle with them, they could potentially sue you out of retaliation to stop you from using their open source software. I guess the difference is that Facebook has decided to explicitly state this in the React license, whereas someone like Google may or may not stop you from using Go or Angular in a similar situation.

Thoughts?

Member

gaearon commented Sep 28, 2016

Hey everyone, thanks for sharing your thoughts.

We still intend to provide the patent grant in addition to the BSD license in Facebook open source projects, including React. However we know the legal wording may sound confusing so we worked with the legal team to publish a small FAQ. It addresses the most common misconceptions we have seen so far.

You can find the FAQ here: http://code.facebook.com/license-faq.

For legal reasons I won’t be able to answer any additional questions, but I hope that this helps.
Cheers!

Cat-sushi commented Sep 29, 2016

The FAQ doesn't answer my question above and copied below.
What is the additional permission granted under PATENTS?
My understanding is that solo BSD License itself already grants essential claims of React, because BSD License is a royalty free OSS License approved by OSI who requires OSS licenses to be permissive without any additional license.
Consequently, I think no permission is granted under PATENTS additional to BSD License.

On the other hand, the FAQ says that PATENTS won't revoke copyright license of BSD.
Does it mean that PATENTS might revoke patent license granted under BSD License, and it is possible?
Even if so, I think that it is no longer BSD License and it is not appropriate to use the term of "BSD".

And,
Why the target of prohibited lawsuit under PATENTS is so broad?
PATENTS grants no patent as I mentioned or only essential claims of React at most, in contrast, it intends to protect not only the software React but the company Facebook and more from any patent lawsuits by licensees.
Don't you think that it is one-sided nor unfair?
Of course, I understand your wishing and I think it might be a legitimate option, BUT it makes React difficult to be used by big commercial companies with hundreds of products/ services, with tens of thousand of staffs and with tens of affiliates.
I mean that, for such companies, it is almost impossible to reach consensus on licensing all their patents including ones they will obtain in the future freely as long as they use React to Facebook, all users of React and more, and it just result in avoidance of use of React.

For comparison, a similar license system of AOMedia grants only necessary claims of the codecs, and prohibits only patent lawsuits against the codecs but not against other things of the AOMedia members.
In this case, permitted rights and placed obligations are balanced, I think.
It may be said that AOMedia even as a anti-MPEG-patent party doesn't offer such an aggressive anti-patent license as PATENTS of React.
The same goes for Apache License 2 of the former license of React.

By the way, licensees are licensees but not patent trolls, and patent trolls are patent trolls who don't practice any real businesses other than patent business.
So, only if licensee is a potential competitor at the same time, the issue would surface.

Again, do you really put more weight on avoidance of patent lawsuits by licensees than on popularity of React?
I don't hope so, but it's your choice, after all.

I would like to hear from your IAAL person.

By the way, how can we find the FAQ by means other than the link above?

I can't find navigation path from https://code.facebook.com.
I can't search within code.facebook.com. (https://code.facebook.com/search?q=FAQ)
I can't google it. (https://www.google.com?q=site:code.facebook.com+%22Open+Source+License+FAQ%22)
I can't google web sites linking it. (https://www.google.com?q=link:https://code.facebook.com/pages/850928938376556 or https://www.google.com?q=link:http:%2F%2Fcode.facebook.com%2Flicense-faq)

With regard to Cat-sushi , < notifications@github.com>

Neither can I , I just hold the hard copy acknowledgement that I have duly registered and I can apply any pull requests with approval from Face Book registration.

For example: My upcoming EVOSTAR Event: AmericanSundown/evostarweb@9fbf72b .

By the way, how can we find the FAQ by means other than the link above?
I can't find navigation path from https://code.facebook.com.
I can't search within code.facebook.com. (https://code.facebook.com/search?q=FAQ)
I can't google it. (https://www.google.com?q=site:code.facebook.com+%22Open+Source+License+FAQ%22)

I can't google web sites linking it. (https://www.google.com?q=link:https://code.facebook.com/pages/850928938376556 or https://www.google.com?q=link:http:%2F%2Fcode.facebook.com%2Flicense-faq)

You are receiving this because you are subscribed to this thread.
Reply to this email directly, view it on GitHubhttps://github.com/facebook/react/issues/7293#issuecomment-250894026, or mute the threadhttps://github.com/notifications/unsubscribe-auth/AMHCXtULjA-jbx1BJN4q1G0NA8oT7EwYks5qvfJHgaJpZM4JOOvO.


From: Cat-sushi notifications@github.com
Sent: Saturday, October 1, 2016 5:40 AM
To: facebook/react
Subject: Re: [facebook/react] License clarification (#7293)

By the way, how can we find the FAQ by means other than the link above?

I can't find navigation path from https://code.facebook.com.
I can't search within code.facebook.com. (https://code.facebook.com/search?q=FAQ)
I can't google it. (https://www.google.com?q=site:code.facebook.com+%22Open+Source+License+FAQ%22)
I can't google web sites linking it. (https://www.google.com?q=link:https://code.facebook.com/pages/850928938376556 or https://www.google.com?q=link:http:%2F%2Fcode.facebook.com%2Flicense-faq)

You are receiving this because you are subscribed to this thread.
Reply to this email directly, view it on GitHubhttps://github.com/facebook/react/issues/7293#issuecomment-250894026, or mute the threadhttps://github.com/notifications/unsubscribe-auth/AMHCXtULjA-jbx1BJN4q1G0NA8oT7EwYks5qvfJHgaJpZM4JOOvO.

hanvyj commented Oct 17, 2016

I'd love to see a clear response to @adeelzaman's question.

If Facebook was to infringe on a VR patent by Microsoft and Microsoft had to initiate legal action against them, their license to React would be revoked and they would have to stop using it?

Member

sophiebits commented Oct 17, 2016

@Cat-sushi Luckily, Google has caught up. Searching "facebook license faq" brings up the page as the first result.

@hanvyj As @gaearon said above, we're not able to provide any more clarifications right now (sorry!). Even if we were to give our interpretation, the license text is what is actually binding so a court could disagree. If you have questions you should talk to a skilled lawyer who can interpret the license text for you.

hanvyj commented Oct 18, 2016

@spicyj Thanks. Off to legal it is. Its a shame, the company I work for is in no way a patent troll but its main business is engineering. I'm reasonably confident the lawyers are going to err on the side of caution when potentially exposing all of the companies IP and tell me to keep well away simply due to the ambiguity. If it's not clear, its a risk.

Most pure software companies probably don't find it too much of an issue with the state of software patents.

I'll try to be somewhat optimistic and mention Google, Microsoft and apple's use of React with the hopes of approval.

@spicyj We want to hear from facebook.
How can our lawyers answer the real intention of facebook or modification of the license?

Member

sophiebits commented Oct 18, 2016

The intention of Facebook does not matter; what is written in the license matters. Sorry I'm not able to give any more clarification.

Obviously, It's not our issue of interpretation.
It's facebook's issue of the language and/or purpose of it.

You may want to use the FAQ to allay basic fears of people who are not lawyers. For example (similar to @Cat-sushi’s questions):

  • What are the consequences of a “termination of the additional patent grant”?
  • Am I not allowed to use React, anymore, then?
Member

gaearon commented Oct 27, 2016

The FAQ only says the things that are certain without a legal precedent. Ultimately interpreting the license is always up to the court, and it is not something we can claim with certainty.

It took us quite a while to work with our legal team to get this FAQ published. Please believe me that it contains all the clarifications that we can legally and technically provide. Thanks!

@gaearon gaearon reopened this Oct 27, 2016

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gaearon commented Oct 27, 2016

(Fat finger, didn't meant to reopen.)

@gaearon gaearon closed this Oct 27, 2016

Cat-sushi commented Oct 27, 2016

Basically this is not a court matter.
Only after users behave against the intention of the language, then facebook might want to ask the court to judge the effect of the binding force of the underlying lows.

On the other hand, the language is newly designed by facebook itself.
At the same time, the language might be changed at any point by the free intention of facebook.
You know, in general, licensers can put almost any regulation freely.
So, first of all, this is the matter of the intention of facebook.
Second, this might also be the matter of the ambiguous wording of the language.
In contrast, surely this must not be a matter of interpretation of a third person, at least at this point.

I think the designer of the language or the lawyer who supported it is the appropriate person to answer this issue.

Member

gaearon commented Oct 27, 2016

@Cat-sushi

I was replying to @rauschma’s comment above. We can’t possibly answer the questions he asked for the reasons I explained above.

The patent grant is intentional, as some large companies didn’t want to use React without an explicit patent grant. The defensive clause is also intentional, as Facebook needs to protect itself against companies that buy patent portfolios and then sue Facebook. If you have any more feedback about it or if your company is uncertain about using React, feel free to send your thoughts to James Pearce who is in touch with our legal team.

Continuing asking the same questions on this issue after we’ve spend a lot of time and effort clarifying common misconceptions is unproductive. If we keep repeating the same points over and over again I will lock this issue.

Cat-sushi commented Oct 27, 2016

@gaearon
Have you really read my comments?
Yes, it's unproductive.
But I don't think anybody in facebook have answered questions of me and others.
Very unfortunately, the only message I have got from facebook is that facebook can't clarify any more with some incomprehensible reasons.
I would contact James Pearce if my colleague, by any chance, want to use React in some our significant products.

papiro commented Nov 11, 2016

Basically, if Facebook steals your idea and you sue them for it, you better hope your idea wasn't built with their ideas.

Member

gaearon commented Nov 11, 2016

Just to be clear, this has nothing to do with ideas. It is about software patents. If you never went and don't plan to go through this process none of these considerations are relevant to your business. If you however choose to use software patents offensively, be prepared that others do the same in return.

hanvyj commented Nov 11, 2016

Not just software patents but any patents your business has, to do with anything. And yes, if you are happy someone using your IP don't go through the process of patenting (this can work very well with software, as we've seen with open source projects). But If you have patented something, its probably for a good reason. I also understand software patents are a bit of a gray area. But this covers all patents.

Patents exist for a reason, other than to troll. The terms penalize defensive use just as much as "offensive" use of patents.

The problem is it isn't just to protect against patent trolling. If it were just patents relative to React, I'd understand perfectly. Don't patent someone else's work. Who could argue with that?

But it seems far, far wider than that. Say your business has patented a widget that took you years to develop? Well, can't use React for your company website. And there just seems to be no need, I'm pretty certain Facebook isn't going to start producing your widgets - and if they did you'd dump the website in a moment and re-build it without React to protect your business. But you can't take that risk. It all just seems a bit pointless.

adeelzaman commented Nov 11, 2016

Just want to clarify between the two conflicting posts above. Does it only encompass software patents, or also cover hardware patents and all other types of patents?

For example, if you are a robotics company that owns several hardware patents, and you decided to use React to code your billing web app dashboard. If Facebook infringes on your robotics patents, do you have to rewrite your billing dashboard without React?

Contributor

syranide commented Nov 11, 2016

@adeelzaman Not a lawyer, but patents settlements exists too. If Facebook infringes on one of your robotics patents it's unlikely that they would just throw their arms up in the air and give up, they would work out an agreement with you. Same goes the other way, it's give and take. Also, let's not forget that React is super simple at the core, it's not technologically revolutionary. There are plenty of alternatives and if Facebook went down the warpath (assuming they even have applicable patents) you can be absolutely sure that a non-infringing drop-in replacement would appear.

It's a healthy discussion to some degree, but it also seems like people are generally blowing this out of proportion. Society is ripe for abuse; easily picked locks, dark alleyways and dangerous people, you'd think no one could be safe, but on the whole we are. If you plan on suing Facebook you're well off taking every precaution, but other than that I'm not quite sure what the problem is. Anyone can steal your idea and anyone might find a way to sue you, no matter what framework you use, even if you've written your own. Google wrote VP8, that doesn't mean that others aren't looking to sue you for using it. Google backing it is IMHO a good thing as they're interested in defending it to ensure that it becomes widely used, the same goes for React and Facebook. They do this for PR and attracting talent.

@syranide Thanks for the explanation. I agree with a lot of your sentiments in the post.

@ValentinH ValentinH referenced this issue in kentcdodds/ama Jan 13, 2017

Closed

What do you think about React license? #240

For your information,
JUnit has relicensed from CPL to EPL in order to be able to be distributed with NetBeans, because CPL has too broad defensive patent clause to distribute together which is similar to PATENTS, but milder.

One more resource.
Eclipse Public License (EPL) Frequently Asked Questions: Specifically how does the EPL differ from the CPL?

Section 7 of the CPL contained the following language:

"If Recipient institutes patent litigation against a Contributor with respect to a patent applicable to software (including a cross-claim or counterclaim in a lawsuit), then any patent licenses granted by that Contributor to such Recipient under this Agreement shall terminate as of the date such litigation is filed. In addition, if Recipient institutes patent litigation against any entity (including a cross-claim or counterclaim in a lawsuit) alleging that the Program itself (excluding combinations of the Program with other software or hardware) infringes such Recipient’s patent(s), then such Recipient’s rights granted under Section 2(b) shall terminate as of the date such litigation is filed."

The first sentence was removed in the EPL. Many members and prospective members believed that the first sentence was overly broad and viewed it as an inhibitor to the continued growth of the Eclipse eco-system.

joe-io commented Feb 2, 2017

@gaearon I work for a large company that has spoken with Google, Microsoft and Apple attorneys and all have said they their legal policy prevents employees from using React and any usage of it will be removed in the future. Our lawyers came to the same conclusion. I do believe large companies are hurt more by the PATENT grant than helped. Why not just use an Apache license, it has patent protections for you and everyone else?

Member

gaearon commented Feb 2, 2017

Obviously I can’t predict the future but Microsoft is actively contributing to React Native and ecosystem, Apple is using React in relatively new products, and Google has no problem using React. We know the situation might change, and we’re keeping an eye on this. However, that they “prevent employees from using React” doesn’t seem true now, even if it was true at some point in the past.

I’m going to lock this issue because bumping it is not very productive. We’ve made our position clear many times, and if you don’t plan to sue Facebook over patents, you have nothing to worry about. If you plan to engage in patent litigation then FB withdraws additional protections given by the grant (which you don’t even have in the first place with open source libraries like MIT). Yes, the grant conditions are broader than Apache, but so far it works well for many companies that choose not to sue each other over software patents. This is why we don’t intend to change the strategy in the near future.

I’m sorry I couldn’t be more helpful here. If your company has further concerns, please feel free to email jpearce@fb.com who talks with the legal team. Thanks!

@gaearon gaearon reopened this Feb 2, 2017

@gaearon gaearon closed this Feb 2, 2017

@gaearon gaearon locked and limited conversation to collaborators Feb 2, 2017

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gaearon commented Feb 17, 2017

On the topic of Microsoft “preventing” employees from using React:

https://mspoweruser.com/skype-is-testing-a-new-android-app-with-a-new-design-reaction-feature-and-bing-integration/

One interesting fact: The new Skype app is built using Facebook’s React Native framework, which could possibly mean that Skype users on iOS will get a similar app soon.

Member

gaearon commented Sep 22, 2017

We’re relicensing React, Jest, Flow, and Immutable.js under the MIT license.
I hope that this addresses your concerns.

https://code.facebook.com/posts/300798627056246/relicensing-react-jest-flow-and-immutable-js/

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