[OSM-legal-talk] My Notes on the "brief for the proposed licence"

Jochen Topf jochen at remote.org
Fri Oct 17 11:34:08 BST 2008

A. Bulk contributors

How is "bulk contributions" in 1) 1. defined? This could lead to problems when
there are hundreds of bulk contributors!

My proposal: Only attribution to OSM. Bulk contributors can be on the OSM
web page somewhere.

B. Availability of derived dataset

If I understand 1) 2.ff correctly it means I have to provide the Mapnik PostGIS
database ("derived dataset") for a Mapnik map that I print out ("end-user
experience") if I have added a single points somewhere. And I have to do this
basically forever, as the printout could last for centuries. Even if the "at
least the lifetime" wasn't there, this clause would preclude many many uses, as
it is just too cumbersome to keep this "derived dataset" and it would open up
many possible frivolous lawsuits because people can sue anybody who's "derived
dataset" is not available (any more). 

A typical usecase would be a nice map somebody produced, where he deleted some
data, moved other things around etc. to make the map look nice. I have added
some use cases to the web page around this.

Note that it doesn't say that you have to give out the source to the software
you created the experience with. So the derived database could be encrypted
and your software could decrypt it. Nobody else could use the database. What
is the use for all this?

And it gets worse: The language in 2) is very convoluted, but what I read
there is that if you add your own data the whole thing in 1) doesn't apply.
How can this make any sense?

The whole brief seems to revolve around this "derived dataset" stuff which
I don't fully understand (and I suspect other don't either) and can't see how
this can be sensibly integrated into a working whole. It seems it is modelled
ofter the source code/binary distinction of Open Source licenses. This seems
to make a lot of sense, but the translation into the data world is not thought
through enough.

C. Use cases

The use cases seem much too few for me. I have added a few, but we need a lot
more, and a lot more diverse ones, before we can derive anything from it. The
whole world is not just slippy maps and printed maps.

Jochen Topf  jochen at remote.org  http://www.remote.org/jochen/  +49-721-388298

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