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An End-User License Agreement, or EULA, as it is often called, is a document through which a creator/owner of software broadly licenses the software for online users. Most often, EULAs are provided in the context of software for sale online, but sometimes, individuals or companies that share their software for free also govern the provision of that software through EULAs.
For any creator/owner of software wishing to share that software with the public, a EULA is a good idea, as it allows the owner to dictate the terms on which that software is shared. The software doesn't have to be a large, complex program; it can be any piece of software which is provided for the public.
The EULA document on any website or mobile app creates a legally binding set of rules for the user on how the software can be used and shared (if applicable). A well-written EULA will also cover items that are absolutely not permitted regarding the software, such as reverse assembly or security breaches.
This document is different than a Licensing Agreement. There, any type of intellectual property can be licensed, like a copyright or trademark, and that document is between two specific parties, the Licensor and the Licensee. This is in contrast to a EULA, where the owner of the software is licensing it for general public use.
How to use this document
This EULA will allow entry of details about the software and the license. It also includes space for additional restrictions that the software owner may wish to apply, beyond a basic form license. There is also additional space for different categories of licenses if there are more than one.
The document itself is rather simple to fill out, as most online EULAs for small- to medium-sized businesses are similar.
After filling out this document, it should be posted to its own separate page on the website or mobile app which allows the purchase of the software.
Although there is not one set of laws or regulations outlining what must be contained in an End-User License Agreement, the intellectual property at issue for the license will be covered under the U.S. Patent Act or the U.S. Copyright Act, with perhaps the federal trademark statute, the Lanham Act, also coming into play. Many online consumer contracts will fall into the jurisdiction of the Federal Trade Commission.
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