[OSM-legal-talk] CT, section 3

Olaf Schmidt-Wischhöfer olaf at amen-online.de
Fri Nov 26 12:13:25 GMT 2010

Hi Frederik,

> You do not give up all control, you say: "Dear OSMF, as long as you play
> by the rules in these CT, you can use my data."

I am sure that each part of the thought experiment is allowed under the 
current CT rules. Or do you see something that violates the CT?

> So while you cannot control which "free and open" license 2/3 of the
> project may choose to use in the future, it will always be a free and
> open license, and it will always be 2/3 of the active mappers, and the
> definition of "active mappers" will always be as written in the CT.

"A free and open license" includes Public Domain, which is just a small step 
away from proprietary. And under the current CT rules I am not guaranteed to 
be allowed to even participate in the vote.

Let me phrase my concern in a different way. Currently we have people with 
many different motiviations contributiong to OpenStreetMap.

a) Many people contribute to OpenStreetMap and do not care about the license.
b) Many people contribute to OpenStreetMap and would prefer a Public Domain 
c) Many people contribute to OpenStreetMap and prefer a Share-Alike license 
such as CC-BY-SA. Most of them can probably be convinced to also accept the 
ODbL, because it is also Share-Alike in nature. But many of them will refuse 
to agree to the current CT because it lacks Share-Alike guarantees.

The OpenStreetMap community now has four choices:
1. Formulate the CT in a way that guarantees Share-Alike licenses.
2. Change the OpenStreetMap license to Public Domain and force the people in 
group "c" to fork.
3. Formulate the CT in a way that allows people in group "c" to object to 
future license changes.
4. Force all contributors to accept CT terms that allow a license change to PD 
without out-out clauses. Some people in group "c" will leave OpenStreetMap. 
Those that remain might be too few to stop a PD license change when a vote 
comes up and will then leave at a later point.

Choice "1" will be opposed by people in group "b".

Both choice "2" and choice "4" make it very likely that all people in group 
"c" will leave OpenStreetMap in the long view, which greatly damages the 

Choice "3" might be a good compromise.

I do not know, however, whether people in group "b" are interested in a 
compromise or whether a fork of OpenStreetMap is seen as inevitable anyway.


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