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MAME Legal Information

License

MAME - Multiple Arcade Machine Emulator
Copyright (C) 1997-2016 Nicola Salmoria and the MAME team

This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or
modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License
as published by the Free Software Foundation; either version 2
of the License, or (at your option) any later version.

This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful,
but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of
MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE.  See the
GNU General Public License for more details.

You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License
along with this program; if not, write to the Free Software
Foundation, Inc., 51 Franklin Street, Fifth Floor, Boston, MA  02110-1301, USA.

Trademark

MAME® is a registered trademark of Nicola Salmoria. The "MAME" name and MAME logo may not be used without first obtaining permission of the trademark holder.

Copyright

The code in MAME is the work of hundreds of developers, each of whom owns the copyright to the code they wrote. There is no central copyright authority you can license the code from. The proper way to use the MAME source code is to examine it, using it to understand how the games worked, and then write your own emulation code. Sorry, there is no free lunch here.

Common Questions

Q. Can I include MAME with my product?
A. Yes. You can use 3-clause BSD compliant files but project as whole is under GPL-2.0 license so in case you wish to use those part you need approval from specific developers.

Q. Can I sell my product with the MAME logo on it?
A. No. Putting the logo on your product makes it appear that the product is something officially endorsed by Nicola Salmoria, and constitutes trademark infringement.

Q. Can I use the MAME logo to advertise my product?
A. No. Using the logo in your advertising makes it appear that the product is something officially endorsed by Nicola Salmoria, and constitutes trademark infringement.

Q. Can I use the term "MAME" in the name of my software?
A. Generally, no, especially if it is something that is sold. However, if you are producing a free MAME-related piece of software, it is common that permission is granted. Send a query to double- check first, please.

Q. Can I put an arcade cabinet running MAME in a public location?
A. Yes, but please note that you also need to have rights to ROMS you are using.

Q. Can my non-profit use MAME or an arcade cabinet running MAME to help raise money?
A. Yes, but please note that you also need to have rights to ROMS you are using.

Q. Is it legal to download ROMs for a game when I own the PCB?
A. This is unclear and depends on where you live. In most cases you would need to obtain permission from the original manufacturer to do so.

Q. What about the free ROMs on the MAME site? Can I use those with my product?
A. Almost all of the free ROMs on the MAME site are licensed only for non- commercial use, and only for distribution from the MAME site. Just because they are available for "free" here does not grant further redistribution rights, nor does it allow you to treat them as "freebies" for commercial use.

Q. If I obtain a license from an original manufacturer to distribute the ROMs can I use MAME to run them?
A. Generally, yes, but we can not give any support without proof that such a license has already been obtained.

Q. Can I use a PC running MAME to replace a real arcade PCB?
A. In order to do this you would have to use a copy of the original ROMs, which would require obtaining permission from the original manufacturer. Once you had permission from them, if it was used for non-commercial purposes, then you would not technically be violating the MAME license. However we still do not explicitly give permission to use MAME in this way because of the possibility of the game being sold sometime later, which would constitute commercial use of MAME. If you sell your game later you must sell it without MAME included.

Q. Can I ask for donations for the work I did on my port of MAME to platform X?
A. No. You would be earning money from the MAME trademark and that is forbidden. It is our wish that MAME remain free for all.