Face­book re­li­censes Re­act to con­tinue to charm devs

OpenSource For You - - Fossbytes -

Weeks af­ter fac­ing crit­i­cism from the open source com­mu­nity, Face­book has de­cided to re­li­cense its projects, in­clud­ing Re­act, Jest, Flow and Im­mutable.js. The com­pany is set to switch the devel­op­ments from the ex­ist­ing BSD +

Patents li­cence, and re­li­cense them un­der the MIT li­cence.

Re­act faced crit­i­cism due to its avail­abil­ity un­der the BSD + Patents li­cence. Sev­eral devel­op­ers even switched to some close al­ter­na­tives of the Re­act sys­tem, which ul­ti­mately im­pacted the com­pany in the fast­grow­ing world of open source.

“We’re re­li­cens­ing these projects be­cause Re­act is the foun­da­tion of a broad ecosys­tem of open source soft­ware for the Web, and we don’t want to hold back for­ward progress for non-tech­ni­cal rea­sons,” Face­book’s en­gi­neer­ing di­rec­tor Adam Wolff said in a blog post.

Face­book be­lieves that the is­suance of BSD + Patents li­cence pro­vides “some ben­e­fits” to devel­op­ers de­ploy­ing its projects. How­ever, the com­mu­nity is not on the same track and wants an un­re­stricted li­cence.

Among the lead­ing crit­ics was the Apache Soft­ware Foun­da­tion. The non-profit or­gan­i­sa­tion even marked the Face­book BSD + Patents li­cence un­der its Cat­e­gory X, and re­stricted ac­cess to Re­act across its en­tire open source port­fo­lio.

“We’re sorry for the churn,” as­serted Wolff, adding that Face­book doesn’t want to leave the door open for devel­op­ers to move to any al­ter­na­tives now.

Re­act 16 will be the first open source project by Face­book to in­clude the li­cence up­date. This new ver­sion is a year-long ef­fort of Face­book’s de­vel­op­ment team and is com­pletely rewrit­ten.

Even though Face­book has moved Re­act and the other ma­jor projects to the MIT li­cence, it con­tin­ues to keep the BSD + Patents li­cence for now. Wolff men­tioned that since each project is dif­fer­ent, al­ter­na­tive li­cens­ing op­tions will de­pend on a va­ri­ety of fac­tors.

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