This is going to be written to give you the facts, such as what is “nulling” and to present multiple opinions.
Nulling is when you modify the code of plugins and themes in WordPress to get around paying for what you downloaded. This can be changing the PHP files to unlock “premium features” or something else like unlocking the right to use a theme/plugin for free. Since wordpress.org does not offer a way for developers to make money with themes and plugins, the developers have come up with way to monetize their creations.
Nulling is essentially changing the code in the files to bypass the need to enter a license key, and therefore get the paid features for free.
The Good in Nulling
Nulling can be good, because it supports what WordPress.org was meant for from the start, a way for people to share awesome themes and plugins. It lets new developers look at how the code from more experienced developers works without the need to buy the theme first, even if they don’t plan on running it on a actual website.
Nulling also lets people who are not financially able make websites using the themes that they want, create some pretty neat sites, which is part of why WordPress has exploded in popularity and is the most used blogging/news platform that exists. Nulling is similar to picking a lock, it does not destroy the lock, just removes its ability to protect what it is connected to. It is not hacking a developers website, and it does not hurt the developer’s servers that you download the code from in any way.
The Bad in Nulling
Most consider nulling as stealing the code that a developer put their time and effort into creating. Nulling is not directly illegal, because when you download a theme/plugin, you are downloading the entire code which you have the right to modify. Most developers would argue that it is illegal since it is finding ways around paying them, and supporting the future updates and development of new content.
Nulling can come with security issues, and even viruses if you download nulled themes from malicious websites. It is worth mentioning that ff you are careful about what you are doing, or null the software yourself, you will not have issues. A good, safe, website to download nulled WP software from is festingerbhw.com.
If you want to support the developers and are able to afford the paid content, then buy it, and know that you will most likely get support from the developers. If you cant afford the wordpress software and dont mind not financially supporting developers, then go ahead and null the theme, but beware of sketchy websites offering nulled themes and plugins.