[OSM-talk] CreativeCommons specialized for geodata?

Immanuel Scholz immanuel.scholz at gmx.de
Wed Mar 22 11:07:22 GMT 2006

Hi Joi Ito,

I heared your speech about creative commons at CCC and your interview in
chaosexpress prior to the event last december. If I remember correctly,
you spoke about that the creative commons team are currently trying to
adopt the license to other, more specialized areas.

We (the community of www.openstreetmap.org) are currently using the
CC-By-Sa license for our collected data. We collect geodata by driving
streets with GPS receivers and use this to create free maps.

Now, some have concerns
(http://www.systemed.net/blog/entry060311122655.html) about the
shared-alike aspect of the creative common license. This lead to a very
exhausting discussion in our mailing list.

I ask whether you have plans (or know of plans) about releasing a
geodata-specialized version of the creative common license? What we most
like to see is a clarification what is a "derived work" when it comes to

1) A homepage which just include a picture licensed under CC-Sa?
2) Annotations to an already created map under CC-Sa?
3) How deep can the annotations attached to the picture? If it is next to
the picture? Embedded within the picture? Interact with the map? Where is
the border?
4) What about a technical independent, transparent layer over a CC-Sa map?
(like Google Maps Layers).
5) Is it impossible with CC-Sa to use (free beer) maps like from Google
close together with free maps? How close is too close?

And do you have recommedation what license options should be taken? The
things we agree want to have are:

- The data must be free to access and modify (by as much people as possible)
- It should not be possible to suppress the community and take advantage
of the data
- The project should benefit from users, if this does not prevent too much
free access

Some of us have concerns, that if we choose a LGPL or BSD-like license,
that we gain too few benefit back from other people who just use the data
as footboard.

Others are concerned that choosing a viral license like SharedAlike will
make it impossible for most to include the free maps together with other
data. Do you know of any licensing experiences in this field?

If you can give advice or point to advice, this would be most welcome.

Ciao, Immanuel Scholz

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