[Talk-us] press from SOTM US

Frederik Ramm frederik at remote.org
Sat Oct 20 17:38:22 GMT 2012


On 10/20/2012 09:59 AM, Toby Murray wrote:
> The discussion was about the fact that some companies are very afraid
> of share-alike licenses and it is preventing them from using our data
> to its fullest potential.

There are several sides to this.

Of course the share-alike license prevents companies from using our data 
to the same potential as a hypothetical PD counterpart (or a 
licensed-for-money competitor); excluding some kinds of 
use-without-sharing-back is the reason for a share-alike license and was 
desired by a large majority of the stakeholders.

On the other hand, the license does not have to be feared, and some 
users might actually let their fear of share-alike shy away from some 
totally legal uses of OSM.

> There is some uncertainty about when exactly
> the share-alike clause is activated. One specific example that was
> mentioned: If you use OSM data to geocode a user's address, does the
> user database then have to be shared?

No, but the database of locations, which might let others guess who your 
users are.

> That's apparently how the
> lawyers tend to read it but in my mind this would be silly. We have no
> use for a company's user database even if it were possible to release
> it without breaking every privacy law on the books.

I agree that we have little use for that database of locations but I 
think that it is crystal clear this is a "derived" database. The only 
way to not require share-alike for that would be - as Richard has 
recently mentioned on legal-talk, where this discussion should be held 
-, to define any amount of geocoded locations to be "insubstantial". 
However that would raise the question - could you not, by mass-geocoding 
every single address on every single street - re-create our whole street 
network? That could hardly be insubstantial then.


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

More information about the Talk-us mailing list