Tuesday, 11 March 2008

Licensing your data

Last Friday I attended the seminar "Implementing Open Data: the Open Data Commons project" at the Oxford Internet Institute. Jordan Hatcher, a lawyer and researcher working on IP issues,  explained how the concept of open data shares principles with those of open source and free software, i.e. data will be available for re-use by the public without  any further licensing or permission needed. 

Jordan pointed out that data can be protected by copyright and database rights and how those require permission in the form of a licence. But in case the data producer or rightsholder wants to openly share the data, then there is no easy way to do this.

The Open Data Commons project has developed a set of licences, in draft form, based on the Science Commons Protocol for Implementing Open Access Data that attempt to address this key legal data dissemination issue. 

In relation to these efforts, it is worth pointing out the work carried out by the DART (Dataset Acquisition, Accesibility and Annotation e-Research Technologies) project developing tools and services to enable their researchers to make use of licences to disseminate their data (also based on the Science Commons Initiative).    

1 comment:

Jordan said...

Thanks for the post! As I mentioned in the talk, the Public Domain Dedication and Licence will be out of beta starting this Saturday (the 15th of March) after an announcement at OKCon.