WordPress, the indomitable blogging platform has a surprising new enemy – the developer of a theme for WordPress.
Matt Mullenweg, the primary developer of WordPress is unhappy because theme developer Chris Pearson refuses to honor the GPL license WordPress is covered by.
The GPL, or General Public License is designed to ensure that any derivative work is distributed under the same terms.
Pearson sells his themes with a license that protects his work completely, but ignores WordPress’ license requirements.
The debate because extremely public a couple of days ago, when Mullenweg began advising WordPress users to use other premium themes, and even began offering to pay for themes downloaded from other sources.
The debate was brought out into the open by Andrew Warner on Mixergy in the form of an hour long discussion between Mullenweg and Pearson.
The GPL license is a massively complex issue, one that has apparently never been fully explored in court.
It seems to me that WordPress does amazing work, and charges nothing for it, so if their only request is that people comply with the terms of their license, how can anyone argue?