[OSM-talk] Attribution guideline status update

Richard Fairhurst richard at systemed.net
Sat Aug 10 09:20:24 UTC 2019

Kathleen Lu wrote:
> "reasonably calculated" means "reasonable." What does reasonable mean? 
> Well a court would look at what other people in the industry do. Do others 
> in the industry list attribution, especially to multiple data sources,
> after 
> a click (or many clicks)? Yes, all the time.

It would be interesting to get some data behind this.

OSM's position when the current attribution text was drawn up in 2012 has
been exactly that: "reasonably calculated" means "what people would expect
for other data providers".

There are only three other geodata providers with a similar product to OSM,
i.e. a worldwide street-level database used for display maps: Google,
TomTom, and Here. In 2012 all three generally required direct on-map
attribution and my impression is that this is still the case, but real data
about current usage and practices would be great.

> A court would also look at what OSM does. Does OSM list its data sources
> after a link? Yes, sometimes two links (first to
> https://www.openstreetmap.org/copyright, then to
> https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Contributors). Some of this data is
> also under ODbL! Why is this not reasonable?

OSM expressly states that our "after a link" behaviour is not compliant with
licences such as ODbL and the CC-BY family. Instead, we need to get an
attribution waiver before using any data licensed under such terms. As per
https://wiki.osmfoundation.org/wiki/Licence/Licence_Compatibility :

"Many sources simply require attribution of the source as a condition of
use, however as we cannot provide attribution on works created or derived
from OpenStreetMap data and our licence only requires attribution of the
overall data source, permission for attribution via our central
'Contributors' pages needs to be obtained and documented."


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