[OSM-legal-talk] Attempt to clarify

Gervase Markham gerv at gerv.net
Wed Feb 20 22:51:21 GMT 2008

Ian Sergeant wrote:
> Gerv wrote on 21/02/2008 09:09:07 AM:
>> I have no desire to become unpaid labour for someone else's business.
> There are so many business models for which you will be unpaid labour,
> under the proposed licence.

This is true. Thank you for getting me to investigate my feelings 
further. Let me try again.

When I write free software, everyone gets to use it and I don't get any 
money. That's fine. I love my users. I wish them all the best. What 
would bug me is if people improved it, and those users don't get the 
benefit of the improvements. It's a similar sentiment here.

Now, I don't have perfect knowledge, so if someone improves it but tells 
no-one, there's not much I can do. But if they improve it, and then 
start charging my users for their improvements which were based on 
something I wrote, that would make me unhappy. I don't feel this is 
fair. (I know others may disagree.)

Similarly, if people want to use OSM data to make maps, that's fine. But 
if they want to use OSM data plus their data to make *better* maps, I 
want to be able to make better maps too, and I want other OSM users to 
be able to make better maps as well. Now, it may be that what can be 
achieved with the law doesn't exactly match up with this principle. But 
share-alike in some situations is better than none.


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