Regarding GPL license of Blender

Our team became to know Blender recently, searching for the right engine for the urban analysis/modeling service on web. We made a prototype in Python in Rhino 3D software - Major computing is done with polyline and vector, not with Nurbs so we believe the migration to Blender is feasible.

I was wondering whether our modeling system would be subject to GPL license, even if we use it, not modifing Blender’s python api in our code. One of our engineers told us today that our code will NOT fall under GPL licensing scheme.

He said we can avoid a license issue as long as we do not edit and modify codes that Blender provides and also because our product is SaaS (since it is a web service)

In other words, if we just employ Blender’s api as it is, he thinks we dont need to make our modeling code as open source.

Is this correct? Forgive me, if I am wrong.

I would like to confirm his interpretation with you, as this is very important for us.

Any advice or future plan will be welcome, and I sincerely appreciate for such a wonderful development.



I’m not a lawyer. But my understanding is that you can indeed run GPL software as a web service while keeping your software that integrates with it closed source. There are many web services doing this. Even modifications to the GPL source code can be kept closed source.

See for example the explanation here.

To be a bit pedantic: if Blender is part of that modeling system as a whole then I wouldn’t say “it’s not subject to the GPL”. But rather “the GPL imposes no restrictions for your case”.

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