Based on the comment above I don't think you understand GPL licensing at all. The person above me stated they were going to license their style as something other than GPL but that is not possible for many reasons. You really should read the text of the GPL version 2 license (which is what phpbb is released under and what affects all derivative works including styles) - in particular this section here:
These requirements apply to the modified work as a whole. If identifiable sections of that work are not derived from the Program, and can be reasonably considered independent and separate works in themselves, then this License, and its terms, do not apply to those sections when you distribute them as separate works. But when you distribute the same sections as part of a whole which is a work based on the Program, the distribution of the whole must be on the terms of this License, whose permissions for other licensees extend to the entire whole, and thus to each and every part regardless of who wrote it.
I haven't released (or used) any styles, either, but I think you may need to "think again".
As you quoted:
If identifiable sections of that work are not derived from the Program, and can be reasonably considered independent and separate works in themselves, then this License, and its terms, do not apply to those sections when you distribute them as separate works.
Styles (other than ProSilver and SubSilver) are not
distributed with phpBB, so they are independent and separate works. More about that in a bit.
thinkagain wrote:In order to meet the GPL requirements styles that are not 100% GPL would not be able to be distributed in the directory structure above. Being in separate folders does not qualify as being distributed separately when those folders are part of a whole style package. The gentleman above me indicated he was developing a style with CC-BY-SA images so I will use his as an example. Since CC-BY-SA is not GPL compatible,
Styles are not "distributed" in separate folders as part of phpBB; they are "installed" into a set of directories whose structure is merely defined by phpBB.
A zip file does not mean a "work" in the context of the GPL. They can be distributed in the same transmission provided they are independent. Where those files are structurally located within the package is irrelevant.
1. Your style zip files do mean a "work" by your own definition of package requirements. This is to guarantee that a user simply unzips the file, uploads the decompressed folder (as a whole) to the /styles directory and a style is born in the ACP.
2. Yes they can be distributed in the same package/medium if they are packaged independently as aggregate works - which if you noticed is exactly what my second directory structure example above demonstrates as the only way you could distribute non-GPL compatible code/images with a GPL covered work, with it
as opposed to within it
. See? Where the files are located within the package is totally relevant, just as it would be if the medium was CD/DVD. Let's try again:
Distributing the same sections as part of a Whole Work:
<------GPL version2 covered style package (aka "the covered Work") ------->
/folder <---style name
../imageset (uh oh,the images here are CC-BY-SA which conflicts with GPL!) <- can't happen
I'm no lawyer, but I disagree with your "uh oh". If somebody tried to package a new version of phpBB that included Adam's style and distribute that under the GPL, they would be violating the GPL. However, Adam's style distributed separately for installation into the phpBB framework would not.
That Drupal link you mention was useless, as it contained no reference to the Software Freedom Law Center.
folder (ProSilver has editor.js
; SubSilver only has editor.js
directory so that styles wouldn't need to distribute them.
Please bear in mind that we in the Drupal community went through this discussion three years ago and the policy I linked you to was developed with the aid of hired attorneys specializing in the field in addition to consulting directly with the SFLC attorneys to get an official legal ruling. Wordpress went through the same process a year later and received the same official legal opinion as Drupal after analyzing the software and how it interacts. The bottom line is that there is no way to separate a template from the phpBB functions it uses and the litmus test of whether the template on its own is a separate and independent work is can the template perform it's function and be useful without phpBB code included in the template. The answer to that is no.
As far as I know, phpBB styles don't use phpBB functions at all. They include markup tags that the phpBB template processor inserts data into (much like various programming languages have strprt functions that allow inserting text into placeholders). That's just a defined API, though.
By your interpretation, it sounds like coding a plug-in to an API defined by a GPL package would require that plug-in to released under the GPL, which seems ridiculous.
That said, phpBB as an organization is certainly free to set limits on what styles they are willing to include in their style database. If they choose to limit those styles to ones released under the GPL, that's their right (but not a requirement as far as I know).