[Talk-us] Public Domain Non-GPS Data Question

Russ Nelson russ at cloudmade.com
Thu Feb 26 22:29:21 GMT 2009

Please read the NASA Open Source License.  In it you will very clearly  
find the position that FedGov-produced works are not copyrightable FOR  
US CITIZENS.  That license is written as FedGov works ARE copyrighted  
for everyone else.  So yeah, there's a line, and no, we can't avoid  
the line, and yes, OSM should have a pro-bono lawyer who can give us  
opinions about what is a reasonable risk and what is not a reasonable  

Asking for zero risk is not reasonable.  If you want zero risk, don't  
get out of bed.  Wait, you could still be killed in your sleep by a  
falling airplane like the guy in Buffalo.

There is no way to stay away from the line.

On Feb 26, 2009, at 4:09 PM, Christopher Schmidt wrote:

> On Thu, Feb 26, 2009 at 03:29:20PM -0500, Russ Nelson wrote:
>> On Feb 26, 2009, at 2:49 PM, Christopher Schmidt wrote:
>>> Because the legal jurisdiction in which OSM is based is *not* the  
>>> US,
>> This is an important topic.  We should consult OpenStreetMap's
>> lawyer.  With no knowledge of which legal system applies, we can't do
>> anything sensible.
> Huh? The doctrine to follow is simple: if there is any chance someone
> could claim the data is not "more free" than CC-By, then don't upload
> it. If you're not sure, don't upload it. If you think you're sure, but
> not 100% sure, don't upload it.
> The OSM policy has always been "If you're asking where the line is,
> you're way too close to it." I see no reason not to keep behaving that
> way. Consulting a lawyer won't get you anything different anyway;
> with so little case law, the answers are always "Maybe".
> Regards,
> -- 
> Christopher Schmidt
> MetaCarta

Russ Nelson - http://community.cloudmade.com/blog - http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/User:RussNelson
russ at cloudmade.com - http://openstreetmap.org/user/RussNelson

More information about the Talk-us mailing list