This seems to be so they can transition to a more 'cloud-like' model. From the FAQ:
Apologies for the offtopic chatter, but I just noticed this as I was
from Jordi Gutiérrez Hermoso to Octave-help date Wed, Feb 10, 2010 at 5:55 PM subject [OT]: Mathworks fighting the GPL mailing list Filter messages from this mailing list unsubscribe Unsubscribe from this mailing-list
trying to look for Emacs's Matlab mode to see if I could get some
ideas for Octave mode. It appears that the Mathworks only allows the
BSD license on their servers now, which affects much free software
under other licenses (in particular GPL) that they were hosting.
It's difficult to find exactly what happened and how because they seem
to have spread the word about this relatively secretly by email to
people with code on their servers, but they do have a FAQ:
This happened July last year.
I don't know about anyone else, but I'm deeply disturbed that
Mathworks is now actively fighting against copyleft.
- Jordi G. H.
Why is the File Exchange adding licensing?Licensing clarifies the rights you have as an author and as a user of the code available on the File Exchange. Licensing details how the file can be used and addresses common questions around rights to modification, distribution, and commercial use.
Well being able to download and use code on the Exchange 'automagically' without worrying about license restrictions is probably a good thing. Of course this also means MathWorks can then ship binaries based on your code without sharing the source. BSD vs. GPL: which is freedomier, flame on!
What happens if I don't do anything? Do I have to put a license on my code?We have no plans to remove unlicensed submissions, but they will be prominently marked as unlicensed. In addition, unlicensed contributions will not be available for use with any future tools that access the File Exchange from within MathWorks products.