Yesterday, the UK’s Cabinet Office published an important new review of Public Sector Information. It’s a fat document to read through, but it oozes with ideas and stories (many no doubt from readers of this blog) about the importance of open data.

The obvious question is, what will the Government do with it at all – it is quite clearly a research paper, rather than Government policy. And even if the recommendations are carried out, is the report asking for enough? Would even carrying out all the recommendations it makes gain the biggest value for society from public sector data?

One of the recommendations in the report is “To encourage innovation in the re-use of information by non-commercial users, UK trading funds should, in consultation with OPSI, examine the introduction of non-commercial re-use licences, along the lines of those pioneered by the BBC’s Backstage project and Google Maps” – an interesting take, given the arguments about non-commercial Creative Commons licenses which OKF people have had recently.

More juicy goodness for you to pick over and over-analyze, this way… Read the original PDF, or scribble on the margins of Sam Smith’s annotatable HTML version. See also the Cabinet Office press release.

Leave a comment below if you find something interesting.

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CEO of ScraperWiki. Made several of the world's first civic websites, such as TheyWorkForYou and WhatDoTheyKnow.

2 thoughts on “Giving us our own information”

  1. This is great stuff and a big well done to everyone involved in it — especially to Tom Steinberg who I know was heavily involved.

    The non-commercial issue is an important one. Clearly a non-commercial license is better than no license but one worries that this will be seen as a substitute for making the data truly open.

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