Breaking: React Relicensed MIT

React License

Last few weeks there was a lot of fuzz going around React and other frameworks. The reason? Facebook changed their licensing on a couple of frameworks, React was one, to BSD + Patents License making it hard for many companies to use the very popular frameworks because they conflicted with their policies as there was a potential risk when there emerged a legal issue with Facebook.

Facebook tried to explain their point of view in a FAQ:

It didn’t help … the fuzz continued to grow bigger and bigger and support for React dropped like a dead fly.

So today there emerged this new blogpost:

Relicensing React, Jest, Flow, and Immutable.js

In short, they are going back to the MIT license, apologized for the loss of time searching for alternative frameworks and back to business.

So that was that … you may however wonder if the companies touched by the issue are open to return to the framework that might change their licenses in the future again.

It certainly showed the risk on using third party software, even if it was licensed in a very flexible license plan. Apparently licenses can be changed anytime (?) I’m not a lawyer but I wonder if it is even legal to switch licenses back and forth. What is the use of a license if you keep switching it?