[OSM-legal-talk] Phase 4 and what it means

Frederik Ramm frederik at remote.org
Sun Jun 5 01:09:27 BST 2011


    some time in the next months we're likely to start phase 4 of the 
license change, where those who have not agreed to the new CT will be 
unable to continue editing.

Someone who has not yet agreed can still change their mind after that of 

Now I sense some uncertainty among mappers as to what phase 4 exactly 
means for them. I know for a fact that among the current disagreeing 
mappers there are some who intend to stay with OSM and who are just 
holding out until the last minute; and I know there are some who simply 
wanted to delay their decision until later.

On the other hand I know that some mappers cannot wait for phase 4 to 
begin because that's when they intend to systematically delete and 
re-map everything that has not yet been relicensed.

Any misunderstanding in this area will lead to friction: mapper A 
thought he still had time to reconsider; but mapper B goes ahead and 
deletes/re-maps A's work (possibly with less precision or other things 
that A doesn't like). A, who intended to stay with OSM but was just 
playing a little game of stubbornness and protest, is infuriated ("how 
could you throw away my super precise mapping!"), and B has wasted his time.

Then again, had B waited until one day before the switch to phase 5, and 
had A decided not to relicense after all, then there would be a white 
spot on the map which isn't too desirable either.

I think that we should come up with a clear message to mappers that we 
issue AT THE SAME TIME as we announce phase 4. That message could either be:

"Do not delete and re-map anything before we go to phase 5 in 2012. We 
know this will lead to blank spots on the map but that's not too bad."


"Before you delete and re-map anything, contact the mapper who hasn't 
yet agreed and whose data you are planning to re-map, and explain to him 
what you're going to do."


"Do not delete and re-map anything before <date>. We will send out a 
message to everyone who has not agreed to the license change, and inform 
them that after that date, mappers are likely to purge non-relicensed 
data and that if they want their data to remain, they need to redecide 
before that date."

or whatever.

I am not advocating one of these procedures over the other; it is just 
important to me that everyone is on the same page. Because currently 
people are not; some thing that they have until phase 5 to reconsider, 
and some already have twitchy fingers and will start purging 
non-relicensed data as soon as we say "phase 4". (Well some are already 
purging non-relicensed data now but everybody advises against.)


Frederik Ramm  ##  eMail frederik at remote.org  ##  N49°00'09" E008°23'33"

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