CLA stands for Contributor License Agreement. It is a legal document that some open source projects require contributors to sign before they can contribute code.
The primary purposes of a CLA are:
- To ensure the contributor has the right to license their contribution under the project’s license. This avoids legal issues if someone contributes code they don’t have rights to.
- Ensure the project has the rights to use, modify, and redistribute the contributed code.
- To protect the project from contributors trying to revoke the license or enforce their patents against it.
For permissively licensed projects, contributors do not need to sign a CLA given that permissive license terms govern the use of such contributions. Read more about permissive licenses here.
For all other repositories, including (a) proprietary or (b) copyleft-licensed projects, contributors need to sign a CLA.
Read more about copyleft licenses here.
We decided not to add CLAs to permissive open source projects to onboard contributors faster and show that we are committed to keeping the project open source.
To sign the Sourcegraph CLA, please fill out this form.
You can view all contributors that have signed here: https://sourcegraph.com/github.com/sourcegraph/clabot-config@main/-/blob/.clabot
You can read more about CLA-bot here.