Owning vs licensing software?
July 8, 2004 11:07 AM   Subscribe

Can someone please explain to me the difference between owning and/or licensing proprietary software, or if there is even a difference in those two terms?
posted by archimago to Law & Government (5 answers total)
Being granted ownership confers all possible rights. Burn it. Resell it. Throw it away. Whatever.

Being granted a license confers a particular right or set of rights. This is typically the right to install and use something.

That said, I'm no lawyer, I don't have a lawyer, and it's been years since I talked to somebody who even thought about going to law school. It's an opinion.
posted by majick at 11:25 AM on July 8, 2004

Owning= full rights to do whatever you want with the software & code. The original creator has transfered full rights to you.

Licensing= permission by the owner of the software to do certain things with the software, as detailed in the license agreement.

on preview, what majick said
posted by reverendX at 11:26 AM on July 8, 2004

Response by poster: So I would assume that owning is very rare, as most people, even though they may buy an application, are actually buying the rights to use it.
posted by archimago at 11:56 AM on July 8, 2004

Correct. Although people like me think of it as functionally equivalent to buying; I never read licence agreements for example, and treat the licenced product as if I had bought it.
posted by carter at 12:30 PM on July 8, 2004

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