[OSM-legal-talk] Privacy and Terms

Peter Miller peter.miller at itoworld.com
Fri Jun 26 14:57:41 BST 2009

On 24 Jun 2009, at 06:56, SteveC wrote:

> Dear all
> One of the things that's resulted from getting help with the license
> process is that it's been noticed we don't have a lot of the legal
> furniture, and thus protection and clarity, found frequently
> elsewhere. We've been offered some fairly standard privacy and terms
> of use policies:
> 	http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Privacy_Policy_-_Discussion_Draft
> 	http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Terms_of_Use_-_Discussion_Draft
> We've put them up for your input as step 1. These aren't even
> recommended by us just yet, but to start a discussion on anything that
> may be bad (or maybe good - that would be novel!) with them?

Thanks for that Steve. Lots to think about there, but it is certainly  
good to start with something standard and then see what needs changing.

I fully support the process of adding a clear legal framework to the  
project but the terms and conditions and license can't be considered  
in isolation without looking at the Articles of Association at the  
same time. Andy asked for interest from people to work on the Articles  
of Association but I have not heard more about it and there is nothing  
on the foundation website. Is there a working group for this? Who is  
on it? Is it publishing minutes? Are there any proposed changes  
available for comment?

My concern here is to try to avoid creating an interesting target for  
'carpet baggers' who may wish to 'privatise' OSM in the way that the  
mutual building societies were privatised in the past ten years in the  

I suggest that we need to infuse all the legal arrangements with  
efforts to:
1) Avoid the OSMF being valuable as a 'take over' target with a  
potential financial value on the open market. Both the articles and  
the terms and conditions should help with this.
2) To protect the OSMF from hostile actions by excluding opportunities  
of financial reward to any parties (members, directors or  
contributors). Both the terms and conditions and articles should help  
with this.


Peter Miller

> Best
> Steve
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