Brussels / 3 & 4 February 2018


What's the difference between all those open data licenses?

My talk will briefly review the major open data licenses including the differences between them and their interaction with free software licenses. Particular emphasis will be placed on thier application to databases.

There are only a few popular open data licenses with a focus on open database licensing, but there is very little guidance on the differences between them. This talk will explain the differences between them, why they exist, and when you might prefer one over the other. I will also discuss sui generis database right, why it exists and how is it different than the traditional copyrights.

This talk will be a whirlwind introduction to the common open data licenses that exist.

I will outline the the major open data licenses including: * Creative Commons Zero Public Domain Dedication (CC0) * Open Data Commons Public Domain Dedication and Licence (PDDL) * Open Data Commons Attribution License (ODC-By) * Open Data Commons Open Database License (ODbL) * Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) * Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike (CC BY-SA)

Will also review some lesser known open data licenses including the recently released licenses created by the Linux foundation. We will look at what uses the authors may have had in mind that motivated them to create the licenses. * Community Data License Agreement – Permissive, Version 1.0 * Community Data License Agreement – Sharing, Version 1.0 * United Kingdom's Open Government License * Canadian Open Government License.

We will discuss why do open data licenses exist and how are they different then free software licenses. We will look at the structure of the licenses to see the legal differences the licenses grant and how they operate. For example will discuss which of these are public domain dedications, licenses, or agreements. We will also talk about when or if that even matters.

After looking at the structure of the licenses we will turn to looking whats differences between the licenses matter for content creators and ask does it matter which license you use.

We will also delve into special considerations of database licensing like the protection and use of personal data, and how the "thin" copyright protection provided to databases impacts the design of open data licenses.

Finally we will ask do you need to use an open data license in your free software project?


Photo of Marc Jones Marc Jones