[Air-L] new CC license for Open Data (semantic web, etc)

elw at stderr.org elw at stderr.org
Mon Dec 17 08:11:46 PST 2007

fyi - of possibly very great interest to folks on this list.


---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Paul Miller <Paul.Miller at talis.com>
Date: Dec 17, 2007 6:35 AM
Subject: [Linking-open-data] New licence for Open Data from Talis and
Creative Commons
To: linking-open-data at simile.mit.edu
Cc: Jordan Hatcher <jordan at opencontentlawyer.com>


As you are aware, appropriate licensing for data remains a stumbling block 
to achieving significant buy-in to activities such as the Linking Open 
Data initiative. We do see contributors such as those already involved who 
are prepared to participate despite the legal uncertainties, but if we are 
to achieve break-out growth and see the pool of linked and open data 
achieve the potential we all wish for it then it would appear that there 
is a requirement for appropriate licensing as discussed in the Open Data 
panel back in Banff this Spring.I'm therefore delighted to share the 
attached press release with you, which announces a new licensing framework 
that we have just released with Creative Commons.  There's a lot still to 
do, and we'd very much welcome the involvement of all of you in making 
this a success...


Dr Paul Miller
Technology Evangelist, Talis
w: www.talis.com/platform  skype: napm1971
mobile/cell: +44 7769 740083
*www.linkedin.com/in/pau1mi11er* <http://www.linkedin.com/in/pau1mi11er>

Talis and Creative Commons launch new open data licence – a milestone for 
sharing data on the Internet17 December 2007

Talis and Creative Commons are delighted to announce the release of the 
*Open Data Commons Public Domain Dedication and Licence*, the first output 
of a successful partnership with the Science Commons project of Creative 
Commons. Creative Commons is well known for its advocacy and licensing 
work in the arena of 'creative works' such as songs, images, and 
copyrightable text.

In developing the Public Domain Dedication and Licence, Talis secured the 
efforts of Jordan Hatcher and Dr. Charlotte Waelde, asking them to build 
upon the principles of the earlier Talis Community Licence in ways that 
ensured its fitness for international purpose whilst aligning it more 
closely to the phrasing of Creative Commons' overarching protocol.

Talis' Technology Evangelist Dr. Paul Miller commented, "At Talis we've 
been arguing for a more permissive culture around use and reuse of data 
for a very long time. Working with our partners at Creative Commons and 
elsewhere we now have a clear framework upon which to build, and in our 
Public Domain Dedication and Licence we have the very first licence to 
conform to that new Science Commons Open Access Data Protocol. With this 
announcement we provide a tool to those who already understand the value 
of unlocking their data. We can also use discussion of this first tool to 
carry a wider set of messages to those who remain unaware of the 
importance of data licensing to their own activities."

The legal environment within which data exist is radically different to 
that for creative works, and although there have been attempts to apply 
existing Creative Commons licences to data, the legal validity of those 
efforts is questionable. In Europe we have Directive 96/9/EC of the 
European Parliament, and its various expressions in the laws of member 
states to define the so-called Database Right. These protections do not 
apply in jurisdictions such as the United States. A different approach is 
therefore required if we are to facilitate the widespread availability of 
data upon which the emerging Semantic Web will depend.

John Wilbanks, Creative Commons' Vice President responsible for the 
Science Commons project, commented "For a commercial organisation such as 
Talis, with a heritage in the business of creating and managing data, to 
recognise the importance of the 'freedom to integrate' says much about 
changing attitudes to the ownership and use of data. That they went beyond 
this recognition and did something about it with their licensing and 
advocacy work says much about them and the team with which they 
collaborated. The Open Data Commons Licence (ODCL) is the fruit of that 
collaboration. Both CC0 and the ODCL offer a sound legal basis upon which 
creators can follow Talis' example and recognise that there is far more to 
be gained by enabling access to data than by continuing to lock it away. 
Uniquely built for data, the Open Data Commons Licence approach 
furthermore implements the norms of data sharing for scientific data, 
providing the guidance for scientists to act as good citizens without 
exposing them to lawsuits and lawyers."

Jordan Hatcher, who completed the redrafting effort, commented, "Building 
an open data licence for the community is very much a collaborative 
process and we need everyone's input to make the licence be the best it 
can be -- including meeting everyone's needs for open data. The project's 
goal is to produce an easy to understand licence and that means having it 
user tested just like software. In the end, the Open Data Commons Licence 
will provide a workable and easy to use solution for data integration that 
will take care of the relevant rights over data and databases."

The Open Data Commons Public Domain Dedication and Licence is available 
for use from today. We are working with the Cambridge-based Open Knowledge 
Foundation in the expectation that they can take on the support and 
development of this and related licences in the future, ensuring true 
community ownership of the licensing cornerstone upon which so much data 
will come to rely.

The Open Data Commons Public Domain Dedication and Licence is available 
for download from www.opendatacommons.org, along with the first set of 
documented Community Norms.

For further information contact Ceri McCall on ceri.mccall at talis.com or by 
telephone on +44 870 400 5029.

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