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WordPress abandons React.js over license patents clause

Automattic adopted React.js for their commercial shell Calypso in late 2015. Since that time React has become immensely popular and has even been been proposed as being a part of the Open Source WordPress distribution.

But React has also caused some worry over it's licensing and patent clause. In a surprise move Matt Mullenweg announced that WordPress is dropping React completely. The announcement comes from mostly a legal perspective, as the team has been very satisfied with the technical aspects of React.js for building user interfaces in an effective way.

Within a few months of the Apache Software Foundation banning use of React.js and other BSD+Patents license, another prominent Open Source organisation drops the Facebook library. Mullenweg states that for licensing and other users building ontop of WordPress, the team is now looking at different options currently:

I'm not judging Facebook or saying they're wrong, it's not my place. They have decided it's right for them — it's their work and they can decide to license it however they wish. I appreciate that they've made their intentions going forward clear.
On React and WordPress

WordPress and Matt Mullenweg has been prominently pushing the viral GPL license for it and it's libraries, so this is continuation in a trend. Though sometimes they have been too vigilent and have actually broken Open Source Licensing themselves.

Currently the team is evaluating options, but it is safe to say strong contenders are Preact, Vue and Web Components.

Written by Jorgé on Monday September 18, 2017

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