Read the Docs open source philosophy

Read the Docs is open source software. We have licensed the code base as MIT, which provides almost no restrictions on the use of the code.

However, as a project there are things that we care about more than others. We built Read the Docs to support documentation in the open source community. The code is open for people to contribute to, so that they may build features into that they want. We also believe sharing the code openly is a valuable learning tool, especially for demonstrating how to collaborate and maintain an enormous website.

Official support

The time of the core developers of Read the Docs is limited. We provide official support for the following things:


There are use cases that we don’t support, because it doesn’t further our goal of promoting documentation in the open source community.

We do not support:

  • Specific usage of Sphinx and Mkdocs, that don’t affect our hosting

  • Custom installations of Read the Docs at your company

  • Installation of Read the Docs on other platforms

  • Any installation issues outside of the Read the Docs Python Code


Read the Docs was founded to improve documentation in the open source community. We fully recognize and allow the code to be used for internal installs at companies, but we will not spend our time supporting it. Our time is limited, and we want to spend it on the mission that we set out to originally support.

If you feel strongly about installing Read the Docs internal to a company, we will happily link to third party resources on this topic. Please open an issue with a proposal if you want to take on this task.