[LEGAL] How to attribute copyright on the final product? [Concluded]

After a conversation about licenses, I’m wondering how should the attributions to the framework and utilized libraries. On my last game, I included the MonoGame logo on the splash screen just because I wanted to emphasize that it was made with the framework, is it enough? Now I’m with another project and I want to know what I should do to be “legal” and to have no copyright problems. Can I place the logo of the framework on the in-game credits? I also use the MonoGame.Extended library (MIT License), can I place it bellow the MG logo as well? Is it all I need? Thanks in advance.

There is no attribution requirement with the Ms-PL we use, so there are no rules or limitations on how you choose to provide attribution should you wish to do so. Of course we appreciate the acknowledgement by including the attribution in your game, so wherever you wish to place the attribution is up to you and what fits best with your game.

Another thing I will be doing is donating to the project as well as the splash screen and mention in legal documentation as well as link backs.

The donation page link can be found on the hoe page at the bottom


I aim to support this soon… especially after the launch of my first game, probably 5% of revenue might do it :slight_smile:

What about the third party libraries that MonoGame uses internally and are under MIT license (like Lidgren) ? Do I need to give them credits as well? If I use a external lib at my end and this external lib is under MIT license, is a sentence on the credits enough?

Stick a hyperlink address to their respected sites in the credits, enough done…

This Part of engine made by xxx under xxx licence

You can stick a single expression of thanks before the list…

I think a lot of people that use the MIT license (including myself) don’t really care how their software is used or about attribution in binary distributions or when included in e.g. a game, but just want minor legal protection (attribution in source distributions and no warranties). The general perception of the license is that it’s just a very permissive license.

That said, the MIT license states:

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

“The Software” is defined in the license as a copy of this software and associated documentation files. Most people would probably agree binary distributions are “a copy of the software”. So that would mean the copyright and permission notice should be included if you use MIT licensed code/libs in your project.

In practice I think that a bunch of people that license their stuff under the MIT license don’t expect you to do that and surely most won’t start a lawsuit over it. Consider that Ruby on Rails, Node.js and jQuery use the MIT license, but I don’t see projects using those include the original license especially in non-source distributions…

But it’s definitely not legally sound to not include the copyright and permission notice… For this reason and because the “substantial portions” part is ambiguous some people prefer alternative permissive licenses like the zlib license which requires attribution in source distributions, but regarding attribution when using “the software” states
If you use this software in a product, an acknowledgment in the product documentation would be appreciated but is not required.

I’m curious what @craftworkgames thinks about this.

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The reason I chose the MIT license for MonoGame.Extended was to be as permissive as possible.

I strongly believe that creating something useful is more important than trying to protect it by lawsuits. For me, the library is most useful when people can use it how they like. That means I’m okay with it if people want to copy and paste the code out of the library and put it directly into their code base, or if they want to fork the project and maintain their own copy, or any of the other ways people might find it useful.

The only thing that really bothers me is dishonesty. In other words, somebody claiming they wrote the code when they didn’t. Note, that’s different from taking the code and being honest about where it came from.

When it comes to attribution, I don’t actually mind if people haven’t done it. I strongly believe that if they find it useful enough they will give attribution anyway without being forced to do so. So yes, I really appreciate seeing the logo somewhere on the splash screen or being included the credits but I’m not going to chase you down if you’ve forgotten.

There seems to be consensus on what @Jjagg is saying about the copyright notice. Just to be clear though, including the license in your project for use of the library doesn’t mean your project also has to be licensed that way. It’s only to cover the use of the library.

If you take a look at this MIT summary I tend to favor the conditions in the left green box and not so much the conditions in the right blue box. If it turned out that the MIT license was preventing people from using the library I’d seriously consider changing to something even more permissive.

@RafaelAlmeida Btw… thanks for the attribution whatever you decide to do :slight_smile:

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I totally agree with this [Being bothered about people practically stealing credit], I think if you are going to use someone else’s work, at the very least, give mention in reference, and where possible link to their channels so that others can use, share and become aware… it takes you literally seconds to do any of this, even if it is a user accessible text file or a screen with text on a view in your application… not a huge burden really, when you consider said person saved you LITERALLY AGES in some cases; by doing the hard work for you… the very least you can do is take the time to cast a light on their efforts…

Well that is what I think anyway…

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Thanks for the answers! It is well explained now, I’ll give the necessary assignments on the credits of the game.

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