[OSM-legal-talk] What happens on April 1?

Richard Fairhurst richard at systemed.net
Thu Mar 8 09:36:10 GMT 2012

Ian Sergeant wrote:
> However, if the transition happened today in Sydney,  we would lose 
> every freeway, every trunk road, every primary road, the harbour 
> crossings, the foreshore.  All the rivers.

Without wishing to play down your loss at all - I wouldn't want to be an
Australian OSM user at this point in time :( - I would reiterate that this
is an Australia and Poland problem. The rest of the world is largely ok, and
much of it is very good: there are many countries over 99% on the
odbl.poole.ch lists.

I can't see any way that the UMP situation in Poland is going to be
resolved, so there's no advantage delaying there; better to reset and
restart. So that leaves Australia. There are two questions: how to get
Australia remapped to an acceptable level; and what data consumers should
do. The "public perception" flows directly from these.

You are not going to get Australia remapped any quicker by holding off on
the changeover date. I generally disagree with Andrzej when he says "it's
better to remap from a blank slate, rather than remap in-place", but in the
case of import-heavy and decliner-heavy areas like Australia and Poland,
he's probably right. Assuming you're going to be using the Australian
government data, which seems to be the general will of the .au community,
you will find it much easier to integrate that into a post-changeover
database.[1] I would gently suggest you start talking now about how you're
going to do that.

As for the data consumers, Australia does have one great advantage: you're
an island (albeit a big one!). That makes it perfectly possible for data
consumers to use pre-1st April Australia data and post-1st April for the
rest of the world - probably three lines of Osmosis or so, and a slightly
longer attribution statement. (No integration between the datasets, it's
just a collective work.) 


[1] That is, unless someone wants to revert the ABS2006 import _now_,
reimport, then replay any subsequent edits onto the reimported data... which
is certainly a possibility and which I'm slightly surprised no-one in .au is

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