Edit: This post is no longer valid (published on October 3, 2017). Thank you to Erlang Parasu for pointing out that React Native is now under the MIT license as of February 16, 2018. https://github.com/facebook/react-native/commit/26684cf3adf4094eb6c405d345a75bf8c7c0bf88.
If you were using React or any of Facebook’s open-source projects under the BSD+Patents license, you could not sue them for infringing on your patents.
On September 22, Facebook re-licensed React and many of its open-source projects (Jest, Flow, and Immutable.js) under the MIT license after receiving backlash for licensing these projects under their own custom BSD+Patents license.
The news of this change for these projects brought out a positive response from the community.
Fast forward to last Friday (Sept 29th), I was looking to make my first open source contribution and ended up in React Native’s repository. I browsed through the README and found this under the License section: React is BSD Licensed. We also provide an additional patent grant.
Remembering the news that Facebook had changed the licensing on many of their open source projects to the MIT license, I thought this would be a great opportunity to open up an issue and contribute. So I opened up an issue that said to update the README to state that React is now under the MIT license.
To my surprise, I received a comment shortly after I submitted this issue and found that React Native is still under the BSD+Patents license.
I assumed with the licensing changes to React, and many of Facebook’s other open source projects, that React Native would also be under the MIT license.
But I was wrong. React, Jest, Flow, and Immutable.js were changed to be under the MIT license while React Native still remains under the BSD+Patents license.
I hope those who are utilizing or thinking about using React Native and/or Facebook’s open source projects find this distinction to be helpful amidst the recent licensing changes.