I am looking for fonts to use for a bound planner of sorts that I am making for myself, but possibly to sell in the future. I've downloaded a few free fonts, with SIL open licenses, can I use these? Thanks!


The full license of OFL can be found here. SIL OFL license is a somewhat permissive copyleft license. Itis unfortunately a viral license. So it is not entirely suited for every action. It is however not similarly viral as using GPL:ed components as it only affects the font itself and leaves rest of your stuff intact.

To be clear. In the usecase that you describe it seem perfectly fine. But i am not a lawyer, and not your lawyer so dont take this as legal advice.

There are other permissive font licenses other permissive font licenses such as:

  • Apache 2.0 (example Caladea)
  • CC-BY (example Grundschrift. More permissive than SIL)
  • MIT (example Couture. More permissive than SIL)
  • CC-0 (Example Aileron) This is as permissive as it gets! It expressly waives ALL RIGHTS. So you could modify, rename and CLAIM rights on the new font!
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  • Note that waiving all rights (essentially disowning) is not legally possible everywhere. Some jurisdictions have inherent copyright which is inalienable. – Janus Bahs Jacquet Nov 20 '15 at 21:55
  • Thats why cc, its a legal hoop. It is its a way to make licence to have properties of PD. Surely you can make licenses in any jurisdiction if so you can make same clauses as PD. @JanusBahsJacquet – joojaa Nov 20 '15 at 21:58

When in doubt, read the license

[SIL Open Font License] enables font authors to release their work under a common license that allows use, bundling, modification and redistribution.

That's about as open as it gets.

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  • " the Font Software, subject to the following conditions: 1) Neither the Font Software nor any of its individual components, in Original or Modified Versions, may be sold by itself." So no you cant sell just the font! – joojaa Nov 20 '15 at 18:04
  • I'm not aware of any font license that allows you to download for free, then turn around and sell it. The OP is asking about using the font in a product, which OFL allows. – plainclothes Nov 20 '15 at 18:30
  • I found several – joojaa Nov 20 '15 at 18:30
  • It allows download -> resell? That's just weird. – plainclothes Nov 20 '15 at 18:31
  • 1
    Sure MIT and CC-0 allow that. CC-0 allows you to modify and claim all rights too. – joojaa Nov 20 '15 at 18:31

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