[OSM-legal-talk] attribution

Frederik Ramm frederik at remote.org
Sun Jul 8 23:39:04 BST 2007


> Any thoughts on my previous posting (5^th July) re attribution; I really 
> think we need to agree some published guidance on the matter sooner 
> rather than later.

I think the problem is that we are neither the authors nor the licensors 
of the data so we cannot tell people how to attribute; technically, the 
attribution would have to list all individual contributors, "where 

We could give them sort of a blanket absolution and say "we generally 
consider it impractical to list all individual contributors and we 
suggest you just attribute <text>", but strictly speaking we are not in 
a position to do so unless we solicit the ok from our contributors.

What we'd have to do in the first place is ask our contributors to 
transfer their right to be identified as a co-author to us (OSM/OSMF). 
Then we could decide what we'd like that attribution to look like and 
then we could tell third parties to use it.

This is very impractical since it is highly unlikely for us to get the 
ok of every individual contributor. Some may be simply unreachable.

We can give out a suggestion now, but technically any contributor could 
still request to be identified individually, "where practical", and we 
cannot override that. Worst case, someone could incur financial damage 
by first trusting our suggestion and then having to re-print something 
because of the claims of an individual contributor, and then try to 
reclaim the cost from us...

It's a jungle out there. (Says a non-lawyer.)


Frederik Ramm  ##  eMail frederik at remote.org  ##  N49°00.09' E008°23.33'

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