[OSM-legal-talk] Legal requirements of permissions to import into OSM

Svavar Kjarrval svavar at kjarrval.is
Fri Jul 24 17:11:53 UTC 2015

Thanks for the response and the references.

Maybe it's not as big as I think it is. While I would personally prefer
the pure public domain or anything closest to it, the entities are
sometimes reluctant to go that far. Some might accept CC0 (and PDDL
wouldn't be valid) but there are some which would want to require
attribution. Are there any CC-BY versions which have been determined to
be acceptable or any other similar licences?

I agree with your reluctancy to suggest the ODbL due to future licence
changes. If the community decides to change the licence, there'd be so
much overhead in getting all the entities which published under other
(custom) licences to agree with the new one (even in principle). It's so
easy for them to say no if they foresee many potential future actions on
their part.

Officials in Iceland don't usually regard granting such licences as a
huge undertaking so they're very prone to suggest making due with
granting the permission via e-mail in a fairly informal manner. If I
were to require a signed paper, some of them might change their minds,
so I'd rather not refuse those offers if I don't have to. The Icelandic
courts have determined that agreements reached/conveyed via email can be
binding but I don't know if that'd be valid under English law.

- Svavar Kjarrval

On 24/07/15 16:31, Simon Poole wrote:
> I suspect the problem is not quite as large as you think it might be.
> If they want to use a public licence, while it may not be actually
> explicitly said anywhere, CC0 or the PDDL are naturally totally acceptable.
> For one offs/special permission I would suggest using
> http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Import/GettingPermission#Letter_Template3
> These are essentially the two standard routes we can take were we don't
> need to make caveats about the data surviving a future licence change.
> Naturally there may be other "non-standard" licences that are acceptable
> and there is for example the ODbL which is usable, however has some
> issues particularly wrt a future licence change (and some more on top of
> that). But as said all tend to invoke additional complications which are
> best avoided.
> Simon

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