Why does gitlabs terms and contitions mention something about payment?

Could someone please explain me if registering means subscribing.
Before registering I’m asked to read and accept Terms of Use and there in 4. I read:
“By selecting a subscription, you agree to pay GitLab the annual subscription fees…”
I am only registering, not selecting any subscription but in next point 5 I read:
“By creating an account on GitLab.com you give us permission to add your email address to the GitLab newsletter. You can unsubscribe…”. So if I can unsubscribe that means then when they add me (not asking me) to newsletter then I will be subscribed.
I see that Price for “Free” subscription (“helping developers…”) is $0 but as I understand point 5 I don’t limit them a right to subscribe me to only “Free” subscription.
I don’t see the selection of account type before pressing the ‘Register’ key.
I was looking there to find any dictionary what is what but don’t see. I suppose that there is assumption that everyone understand what is written in ‘Terms of Use’ but it is not clear for me.
What I don’t know that I have a doubt where others doesn’t?

Subscribing to paid account is completely optional. If you simply register you won’t pay a cent, it won’t even ask for any payment method.

I supposed it.
My main problem is: why I can’t be sure of it by reading “Terms of Use”. I must understand something absolutely wrongly. The same I had with GitHub. I understood those terms of use as “We don’t charge now but we can change our mind at any time.” Somewhere close to the end of rules (I was asked to read before registering) there were something like that.

the word “subscribe” or “subscription” can be used in different contexts which may be misleading. Usually “unsubscibing” from a mailing list or similar means that when you have given you contact information you will receive messages, and can “unsubscribe” from the message list, thus not receiving those messages anymore.

Subscribing for a gitlab licence is completely different. The situation is even less clear because there are two different things: using a gitlab account with gitlab hosted by gitlab (having different service levels for which you have to pay or not), and using gitlab as self-hosted git service (which also may have different service levels). Did this make things clearer? No, it didn’t. :slight_smile:

Anyways, you can register to www.gitlab.com to be able to use the projects which are hosted there without fear of being charged any money or anything else. You can even register with your existing Google, Twitter, Gitlab or some other account so that you can sign in if you are signed in to the respective service in the same browser instance. Put simply it’s just a way to indentify yourself to the gitlab server, nothing more.

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I think you main problem is you read Terms of Use in the first place :slight_smile:


You probably understand correctly and that is just their legal team covering their asses and what they mean by that is that they will not guarantee that free tier will always exist.
What I would worry is if they required payment info even for free tier, then they could potentially charge me if they decided to change terms in the future. Even then I can contest the charge and unsubscribe easily but I wouldn’t subscribe to such service in the first place, just out of principle.
This is not such case.

The software running gitlab is under an open licence https://gitlab.com/gitlab-org/gitlab so should the service “gitlab” ever be non free then cern can probably just host such an instance for kicad at least.

You are right: No it didn’t :slight_smile:
I should probably learn what ‘git service’ is. If I know that then it should be easier to understand Rules.
I have heard of github first time 2 years ago when started to read about KiCad, but only heard.

Once more you are right, but I prefer to think it is not my main problem :slight_smile:
I used to read instruction even before using electric cordless kettle.

But what if there is no payment info but you receive official bill to pay. I’m not sure that if you didn’t give the payment info but agreed to ‘Terms of Use’ you can always said “It not applies to me”. Agreement is agreement. Isn’t it? May be the mail address is not enough to charge somebody but who knows.

If you register but do not upload any projects they they (GitLab) have not provided you with any service, even for the free tier. So they can’t charge you anything. If they change the Terms of Use they have to notify you to opt out. This won’t change, because they don’t want to disconnect users who are registered to file issues, comment, etc.

Like you, Piotr, my interest in Kicad lies in the fact that it is free and open-source software. In the past few weeks, I have begun to learn git in order to use it as a backup medium on my computer, to store one Kicad PCB project so far. Also, I understand, Git is a way for free and open-source software to evolve through participaton by multiple developers worldwide working concurrently and independently. It was created by Linux Torvalds as a practical tool for developing linux.

I gather that gitlab.com is a repository for multiple FOSS projects to evolve independently.
Thank you, eelik, for making this clear.
Please correct me if I am wrong.

Presently I am learning git by reading https://git-scm.com/book/en/v2/Getting-Started-What-is-Git%3F. I realize I will not truly understand FOSS development through git until I start fixing bugs in an existing git project and commiting them.

Yes, gitlab.com is a website which offers gitlab hosting service for projects. Basic hosting offering (without paid subscription, with limited support and not all possible features) is free.

It’s also good to know that gitlab.com basic service is free for closed projects, too (with some limits, see https://about.gitlab.com/blog/2019/01/07/github-offering-free-private-repos-for-up-to-three-collaborators/). (EDIT: github.com offers free closed projects for limited number of developers; there was inaccurate information in my post.) For some years I have kept proprietary KiCad projects there. It’s a great way to have both centralized server and backup for your projects.

Both github and gitlab base their website hosting service on their own Open Source software. You can use either of them on your own servers to host your own projects if you want to. Those companies of course offer paid services and support.

Both websites host many Open Source projects. For this to be possible they need to have user accounts for non-developers as well as for developers or project owners because anyone needs to be able to report bugs etc. So they offer normal registering and sign-in possibilities just like any other website which need to identify users.

When you have registered, you can of course subscribe to their services. But otherwise this kind of “subscription” is completely separate from signing in to their website. Just like when you have a Google account - you have an account and possibility to use free email but you can pay for more. It doesn’t happen by accident just by registering.

I hope this clears thing up a bit better for Piotr and others.


As always. You are right :slight_smile:

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