Python scripts - Blender GPL License query

Hi All,

Can someone please provide me with the answer on whether the development of Python script for Blender is ‘owned’ by the creator individual of the developed code, or whether it must be shared (no individual intellectual ownership) as per the GPL Creative Commons?

Many thanks in advance.


Source, found through the most helpful google…

What about my Python scripts?

When a script uses calls that are part of the Blender Python Script Interpreter, the interpreted program, to Blender, is just data; you can run it any way you like, and there are no requirements about licensing that data to anyone.

The Blender Python Script Language is defined here:

This only applies to the Blender Python API calls. Scripts still have to follow the licenses of other code, bindings or libraries that they might use.

If you link a Blender Python script to other libraries, plug-ins or programs, the GPL license defines they form a single program, and that the terms of the GPL must be followed for all components when this case gets distributed.
The bottom line is that we consider everything you can create in Blender as ‘data’, including Blender scripts. But when you extend Blender with “other facilities” you have to follow the regulations of the GPL.

OK is:
Author publishes a Blender script mixed with own code, under own license.

Not OK is:
Author publishes a Blender script, calling a compiled C library with own code, both under own license.

OK is:
Author publishes a Blender script, that calls other scripts with own code, under own license.

Not OK is:
Author publishes a Blender binary with own scripts, bundled under own license.

The divider is “If the script runs in the Blender Interpretor”. When the script calls code not running in the Blender Interpretor you are making bindings to other facilities, and the regular GNU GPL rules apply.

Of course this only applies if you link your script to a gpl’d (or similar) licensed lib, if you linked to a BSD’d library for example then you would have to abide by the terms of the BSD license which has no requirement of releasing your changes.

Oh, and the creator always ‘owns’ their work, what the GPL provides is the means to distribute the ‘owned’ work of others.

In other words you can do whatever you want with gpl’d code but if you wish to distribute it to others then you must abide by the terms of the GPL which is usually that you must also provide your changes to their ‘owned’ work but you retain copyright to your changes – well, subject to copyright law on ‘derivative works’ which means you may or may not actually own the fruits of your labor…

Firsts of all Uncle Entity, many thanks for your detailed reply. Doing the Google thing was good start! cheers.

Okay I read through all this but still find it very mirky to fully understand. So here is a simply example:

x develops a Python script that moves armatures within an animation created by x within blender. Then makes a video demonstrating the animation.

Question: Is the script required to be shared under Creative Commons, or is it the full ownership of x, i.e. has full (sole) legal rights to the script?

Many thanks for yout time.

If you write a script you are automatically (I believe internationally) granted ‘ownership’ of it through copyright law.

If you write a script that the blender interpreter, err…interprets they (the BF) don’t consider that ‘linking’ so the GPL doesn’t apply and you can use (or not) whatever license you want.

If you write a script that links to some external gpl’d library then the gpl would apply to your script.

For your question, if the script only used built in blender python methods then there is no requirement to share or release it under any license no matter what the script is used for.

This seems quite clear now. Many thanks for your detailed replies.