[R] Question about ‘The R Project’.

John McKown john.archie.mckown at gmail.com
Mon Nov 14 17:51:44 CET 2016

On Mon, Nov 14, 2016 at 2:00 AM, 김세희 <janekim at zenithn.com> wrote:

> Hello,
> I’m Jane Kim from Zenith and Company.
> We have a question about ‘The R Project’.
> It looks like it’s an open source software, but the document from the
> website shows that it’s free of use not free of price.
> Please, confirm us the if it cost fees to use it for commercial use.

> If needed, could you inform us the price for it, too?
> Best regards,
> Jane Kim.
​According to
, R is released under the "GNU Public License" version 2.0. This means it
is "libre" (the source is available). Also, it is "gratis" (it is free from
cost to use, although it is permissible to charge a one-time "distribution"
fee - such as might be done if you want someone to mail you a DVD with the
source on it.)


2.11 Can I use R for commercial purposes?

R is released under the GNU General Public License (GPL), version 2
<https://www.gnu.org/licenses/old-licenses/gpl-2.0.html>. If you have any
questions regarding the legality of using R in any particular situation you
should bring it up with your legal counsel. We are in no position to offer
legal advice.

It is the opinion of the R Core Team that one can use R for commercial
purposes (e.g., in business or in consulting). The GPL, like all Open
Source licenses, permits all and any use of the package. It only restricts
distribution of R or of other programs containing code from R. This is made
clear in clause 6 (“No Discrimination Against Fields of Endeavor”) of the Open
Source Definition <https://opensource.org/docs/definition.html>:

The license must not restrict anyone from making use of the program in a
specific field of endeavor. For example, it may not restrict the program
from being used in a business, or from being used for genetic research.

It is also explicitly stated in clause 0 of the GPL, which says in part

Activities other than copying, distribution and modification are not
covered by this License; they are outside its scope. The act of running the
Program is not restricted, and the output from the Program is covered only
if its contents constitute a work based on the Program.

Most add-on packages, including all recommended ones, also explicitly allow
commercial use in this way. A few packages are restricted to
“non-commercial use”; you should contact the author to clarify whether
these may be used or seek the advice of your legal counsel.

None of the discussion in this section constitutes legal advice. The R Core
Team does not provide legal advice under any circumstances.


Heisenberg may have been here.

Unicode: http://xkcd.com/1726/

Maranatha! <><
John McKown

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