I'm trying to figure out what license is best to use with a proposed CodeGolf.SE sandbox viewer. Please read the whole question/proposal before answering.

Main Question

What would be the best license for a proposed sandbox viewer? I would maintain it as an open-source project, and I wanted to know of the best license to use for it.


Before everyone who disagrees goes on a rant, read this:

  • If you want it to, this will keep track of the sandbox length and create a new one if it gets above a certain length.

    • It can't mark new sandboxes as featured unless someone with adequate permissions either enables support or does it manually.
  • Using this web app will be optional: the questions can still be proposed/commented/answered as normal on Meta.


  • Completely from the site

  • A single-page HTML/CSS/JS application, runnable from anywhere, even locally.

  • Allows for viewing, asking, commenting, or (on some) answering proposed questions.

  • Uses a hard-coded sandbox question on the Meta site to hold all its data

  • Presents it in a more convenient fashion than the question itself

  • Data is also human readable in questions

  • Require Stack Exchange's OpenID login to propose/edit/comment on questions

  • Allows embedding potential answers or answer-like comments in the questions themselves given permission by the proposed question's asker.

    • Makes it a community wiki to enable this

    • Reads the history to get the user's comment

  • Comments to the proposed question go in comments section

  • Comments to proposed answers/answer-like comments would go under the answer itself

  • Proposed questions are created as answers to the Meta sandbox

  • When ready, a user is prompted for any changes, then a new question is created on the main site

    • Old is automatically changed to a link to the question, clearly marked as posted and with all extra content removed


  1. It would embed a tiny bit of metadata via HTML comments in the body to tell if some question is already posted on the main site (falls back on a regex) so it can hide the question.

  2. Pieces of it may be turned into code challenges (many JS-specific) here on the main site, with licensing restrictions to override the stock CC-BY-SA license, and then used in developing the app.


If there are any features you want/don't want, please let me know.

I would be the maintainer of this project (working on beginnings now), but I know I will get some help from the community in developing this application. So, I'm looking to you all for input on what license to use for it.

Also, I (or another contributor) will make a PSA when it is ready for testing.

This idea came up in chat as a potential solution to the sandbox problem.

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ I'm not sure what you mean by "with licensing restrictions to override the stock CC-BY-SA license". Anything posted as questions or answers on Stack Exchange are required to be licensed under CC BY-SA; you can add other licences too, but you cannot take away the CC BY-SA. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Aug 15, 2014 at 10:56
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Also, I don't think you need metadata to mark username on answers or comments; that's what the post history is for. Otherwise, it's easy for a miscreant to falsify such information by editing the post outside of your app. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Aug 15, 2014 at 10:58
  • \$\begingroup\$ @ChrisJester-Young Okay. \$\endgroup\$
    – Claudia
    Commented Aug 15, 2014 at 11:02
  • \$\begingroup\$ I would suggest the AGPL, since it is specifically for web apps. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jul 6, 2017 at 11:31
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ The christopher license. IF YOU USE DIS U MUST GIVE CREDIT TO ME ON THE PLACE YOU USE THIS \$\endgroup\$
    – user63187
    Commented Jul 6, 2017 at 18:03
  • \$\begingroup\$ All caps are needed. \$\endgroup\$
    – user63187
    Commented Jul 6, 2017 at 18:03

1 Answer 1


AFAICT, there is nothing special about this from a licensing point of view. (But I am not a lawyer and I am not your lawyer).

You always have the rights to relicensis your works to yourself, so you can use that to make code-challenges from it.

You are basically free to use what ever license you want.

I personally suggest MIT. It is common, it is simple, it is permissive.


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