Over the last month we’ve been working to produce a Guide to Open Data Licensing. As the name should make clear this is a guide to licensing data aimed particularly at those who want to make their data open. The guide is currently located on the wiki so that anyone can edit and update it:


While attending XTech back in May it became clear that there were a lot of questions both about the legal status of data and what approaches to use when licensing it — something that had also become apparent following on from Jo’s post back in April on copyright not being applicable to geodata).

We started work on the guide in order to have something which could help answer these kinds of questions. At present it is roughly divided into two sections. The first section deals with the practical question of how to license your data. The second section discusses what kinds of intellectual property-like rights exist in data in various jurisdictions.

This guide is very much in an ‘alpha’ state, with much that can be done to improve and extend it. We’ve been working on it in the wiki precisely so that anyone may edit it and we’d welcome contributions — whether it be adding new sections and use cases or just fixing typos. So please, check it out and feel free to make changes.

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Rufus Pollock is Founder and President of Open Knowledge.

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