[Osmf-talk] Contributor Terms: is the right to fork granted?

Matt Amos matt at asklater.com
Mon Dec 7 16:32:11 UTC 2009


Gervase Markham wrote:
> On 07/12/09 03:29, Niccolo Rigacci wrote:
>> I read the Contributor Terms from the Proposed License [1], where 
>> "You grant the OSM Foundation a copyright and database rights 
>> license for the bits of data that you add".
>>
>> The draft of the Contributor Terms from the wiki [2] says 
>> instead: "You hereby grant to OSMF and any party that receives 
>> Your Contents a worldwide, royalty-free...".
>>
>> I think that "and any party that receives Your Contents" makes a 
>> big difference: in a case only OSMF has rights, in the other case 
>> anybody who downloaded the planet. Am I right?
> 
> This bit of the Contributor Terms definitely seems wrong. On the face of
> it, it grants unlimited rights to everyone. The license does not define
> the word "receives" specially, and the Contents is your contribution, so
> downloading planet.osm seems to be "receiving the Contents" to me.

that might be wrong. obviously the intent wasn't to grant such a liberal 
license, otherwise we wouldn't want the ODbL.

one point though, does it make a difference that when you're downloading 
the planet from OSMF, it's OSMF who is the licensor and then it's 
licensed under the ODbL?

there's also maybe a subtle point between the Contents and the Database. 
does it matter that the Contents are liberally licensed, given that 
Substantial extracts of the Database would be ODbL licensed?

cheers,

matt




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