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A user forked a repository made by me that is licensed by the MIT License. He made a few changes to the code and added the following line to the README.md

Made by [HisName]! Contact me at [HisName]#0675

Is that legal?

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  • To clarify, your contention is that the code base, with this individual's changes, is your code and not his?
    – sharur
    Commented Feb 3, 2022 at 16:51
  • 4
    Is the license statement itself, including the name of the copyright holder, still there?
    – Sneftel
    Commented Feb 3, 2022 at 16:52

2 Answers 2

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Providing your copyright notice (if any) and the MIT license has been included, yes.

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From the MIT license page at:

MIT License Page

The following text appears:

Copyright YEAR COPYRIGHT HOLDER

Permission is hereby granted, free of charge, to any person obtaining a copy of this software and associated documentation files (the "Software"), to deal in the Software without restriction, including without limitation the rights to use, copy, modify, merge, publish, distribute, sublicense, and/or sell copies of the Software, and to permit persons to whom the Software is furnished to do so, subject to the following conditions:

The above copyright notice and this permission notice shall be included in all copies or substantial portions of the Software.

As long as the conditions spelled out in the final sentence are followed, yes "HisName" can do whatever he wants.

If you wanted to protect against this, you should have chosen a different license. You cannot take back this previously licensed code but any future releases or updates can use a different license.

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  • But the license reads ' free to modify without restriction' so couldn't @Will just make a copy of the code and remove the contact information for the version that Will distributes?
    – GBG
    Commented Feb 4, 2022 at 20:18
  • No, the ONE condition is that the copyright notice shall be included. That's the ORIGINAL copyright notice.
    – jwh20
    Commented Feb 4, 2022 at 20:41

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