OpenStreetMap Foundation

Licensing Working Group

  Tuesday 10th January 2012

19:00 - 20:38 GMT

Agenda & Minutes


Present: Henk Hoff, Dermot McNally, Simon Poole, Oliver Kuehn, Grant Slater, Richard Weait, Michael Collinson


Minutes by: Michael 

1. Adoption of Minutes of last meetings

The LWG last met December 20th for a long-form meeting.

Proposed: Richard

Seconded: Dermot


2. MATTERS ARISING (open action items from previous meetings)

  • Grant - Get a license and attribution page link as an XML Comment into these APIs: Rails API. (patch done but not live)
  • Mike -  combine Bing Imagery License comments as a succinct list for forwarding to Microsoft legal.
  • Mike - Incorporate into foundation landing page
  • Action - Grant - Ask if it feasible - Add a tag to a user's user page indicating license acceptance status. (done and implemented for some time)
  • Mike - Provide text to Grant re and friends in Sept 20th minutes. Addition: Pay attention to Poland UMP-pcPL project
  • Mike - Recruit a core volunteer technical team to help out with database rebuild (Oct 25 minutes) (done - “rebuild” mailing list created and invitations sent out)
  • Dermot and Richard will contact four people we have identified for per change-set CT acceptance (Oct 25 minutes) Ongoing

3. Finalise today's agenda

4. Bulk mailing

Has every undecider been sent a second reminder? No. Second reminders have gone out to browser first language preferences set as follows: about 12 languages (German, French, …) + English + no preference.

As per request from Philippines, Richard will send an English version to anyone with Tagalog as first preference … then Philippines will start remapping.

Richard also has Korean version in the works.

5. Critical mass achieved

The LWG believes that critical mass, as per the implementation schedule, has been achieved though work should be continued to reduce localised impact.

On a global basis, over 96.8% of nodes and 96.3% of highways [1] are by folks who have accepted the new terms. However, we still have globally 36 million nodes and 46,000 relations that may not survive the license change and 4.2 million problematic ways where some or all value will be lost [2].  This are still large numbers and our focus now is to reduce it.

A worldwide version web-based map of what the ODbL “Clean” and “Bad” map will look like if the change-over happened right now will be released shortly.

[1] Based on node count,

[2] "Nodes Created" 

7. Database re-build

- As per email correspondence by LWG members over Christmas, the LWG is formally encouraging remapping on a country-by-country basis to make sure that national concerns and issues are taken into account. Pilot projects have been launched in the UK and the Philippines. Both have been received well.

In the UK, concern has been expressed about tainting of large route relations and how to cope with that without remapping.

There are no Philippine-based decliners and the number and impact of undecided contributors relatively small with one exception. Attempts have already been made to reach them. It will be difficult to comprehensively remap without local knowledge and only landsat.

- Australia. Australia is unusual in that the chief issue is ways, almost always highways, created by an acceptor but subsequently edited by a decliner. In most of the world the issue is the other way around. This is caused by a small group of contributors who have made massive systematic edits such as adding a maxspeed tag based on the type of highway and then declined.  It is therefore sensible to do programmatic cleans/reverts first rather than remapping.   talk-au is discussing this and we will help if we can.

- Early reverts

This may help in some places. Redacted edits could remain in the database but not appear, this is so that they cannot be brought back … the subject of a hack weekend perhaps.

- Osnabruck - Import by declined contributor ulfl of City council data as v1 by commercial donor Frida project, Oliver - to contact. The original was a CC license, not known if Council/donor has OK’d ODbL … this is the first thing to be confirmed.

- Question from Holland community - Abandoned data. If we send emails to non-deciders and then a “final warning” … could we then keep the data in the database? Has this been checked?

No, we cannot keep it. It is an orphan work.

- Question from German community - still a significant number of “lost mappers” with significant contributions. Can we start an WG or group of people who would have authorisation to see the email address soley for the purpose of contacting them. OK under UK Data Protection Act? Simon First ask Tom who is read up on this.

- Biggest national problem areas showing in OSMI:

  • Czech Republic - Solely due to one contributor pavel and his imports of waterway’s roads and addresses.
  • Poland - due to UMP imports
  • Montenegro and/or Kosovo - h4ck3rm1k3, Michael DuPont (Undecided) appears to be the reason but why so extensive? … there are also a number of other significant contributors including:
  • TakoGISOnline Undecided 22 February 2010 - 02 May, 2010 MapAction imports
  • pdpd Undecided (21 April 2009 to 17 November, 2009)
  • Balsa Undecided (27 October 2008 - 23 November, 2008)
  • Al3k5aNd4R Undecided (27 October 2008 - 13 November, 2008)
  • bozocv Undecided (27 October 2008 -  29 October, 2008)
  • jkjk Declined (7 January 2008 - 15 June, 2011) Czech Republic based
  • borces Undecided (4 June 2009 - 12 January, 2011)
  • mviktor Undecided (5 September 2009 - 21 May, 2010)
  • Rade_mne Undecided (14 September 2008 - 13 January, 2009)
  • Cyprus - one historical user, tomasCY  - Mike follow up if a friend of Steve?, last edit Oct 2009. Also user_7363, last edit May 2009.
  • Germany
  • Japan - due to the largest decliner, argath, of doing a huge place name node import; Japanese community happy to see it go. Henk to ask if it could go now.
  • Liberia - rendle Declined (most, also mass landuse tracing in Belgium), also Ado Molenga Undecided, danielscott Undecided

- OSM Inspector License View is currently the best way of getting a helicopter view of a mapping area and then zooming in on problems.  The rules it uses for what constitutes a real problem have been refined over the last few weeks and it appears pretty accurate now. It has icons to launch either Potlatch 2 or JOSM. Both editors highlight problematic nodes and ways well. Relation support is still weak.

- Questions to legal counsel on GPX traces and bot changes

Not discussed

- Walking Papers

Not discussed

- Garmin map

Not discussed


- Countries where data collections is not officially allowed (China, India, …)

Not discussed

Next Meeting:

Tuesday Jan 17th 11:00 PST / 14:00 EST / 19:00 UTC / 19:00 GMT(UK) / 20:00 CET