[OSM-talk] Toward resolution of controversies related to iD

Simon Poole simon at poole.ch
Tue Jun 9 17:40:03 UTC 2020

Am 09.06.2020 um 18:04 schrieb ndrw6 at redhazel.co.uk:
> ....
> Who owns the iD project now? What's happened after "nearly all of the
> original authors left Mapbox", has the project ownership been
> transferred from Mapbox to OSMF, or perhaps to current maintainers?
> Does Mapbox still retain the ownership rights to the project (even if
> they don't currently care about them)?
I don't think that is a particularly relevant question, but at least the
non-forked code base currently is at https://github.com/openstreetmap/iD
> The code license is very permissive so there is always an option of
> starting a new project based on it (forking). But the license and
> ownership of the project are not the same thing.

iD doesn't require any rights assignment to have contributions accepted,
so again I'm not sure that that is a meaningful question. The IP rights
in the code are owned by individuals contributing, and given that the
major part of the code was work for hire*, by the companies employing
them. But this would only be relevant in the case of re-licensing in any

>> Many would have argued that the OSMF should have received the half a
>> million dollarsĀ  and contracted the work out, maybe to Mapbox, but in
>> any case just because what actually happened was slightly different,
>> doesn't mean that the OSMF and the OSM community gave whoever happens to
>> be working on iD the licence to control the projects destiny forever.
> Not saying that this shouldn't be the case, but clearly it wasn't, at
> least initially. And if it isn't ours we can't simply take it, even if
> we really, really want it.

As Frederik pointed out, without the OSMF agreeing to distribute the
code and host it on openstreetmap.org the project would have been a
non-starter. Your whole concept that this is something that developed
independently and now there is now a grab by the OSMF to control itĀ  is
completely at odds with reality, most of the issues are actually due to
the OSMF -not- exercising its power in the past which is what this
initiative is trying to address.

> From my point of view - I am happy with the current project
> governance. It works well for iD, it works well for the OSM community.
> Controversies are all around minor issues and contributions -
> basically saying that the maintainers are doing their job.
Many people will disagree with that.


* "naturally", well it is one of the issues, the OSMF doesn't have any
direct knowledge of the terms of employment of the relevant individuals,
so this is a bit of speculation.

> Ndrw
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