Hello everyone,

After OSMF was originally wanting to start the license change at the beginning of April, due to technical problems with the redaction process of non relicensed data, it has been delayed till now.

The OSMF has now announced a new schedule [1]. It will begin removing data for which it does not have permission to relicense from CC-BY-SA to ODbL 1.0 this coming Wednesday 11th.

It will happen as a slow process while normal editing of OSM data continues. From a data consumers perspective the removal will look like any normal deletion of data and will be mixed in the minutely / daily diffs with the normal changes. The duration of this process is not yet clear due to the uncertainty caused by the load of the normal edits, but very rough estimates supposedly range from a week to several months, but hopefully it will be completed within a month.

Luckily, worldwide only a little more than 1% of the total current data has to be removed, but regionally this can unfortunately still be a lot more despite all the efforts to minimize the impact.

The question now is how should the wikipedia osm-tile-servers handle this situation?

1) continue as normal, importing the minutely diffs. This has the advantage of staying up to date with all the ongoing mapping efforts, but the disadvantage of degrading the data in areas where the redaction-bot deletes things.

2) Suspend the diff imports during the redaction phase: This allows mappers time to fix some of the damage done during the process, but removes the up-to-dateness of the map.

This affects at least the tileserver run on toolserver.org which serves tiles for the osm gadget for various wikipedias and the WIWOSM project. But depending on when the new tileserver run by the foundation for its mobile project goes into production, it would also need to make this decision. I don't currently know how the mapquest open tiles will handle the situation.

During the redaction period, all data continues to be CC-BY-SA. When the actual cut-over to ODbL will occur is not yet clear, as the timing of the redaction bot is still uncertain but presumably very shortly after it has finished.


[1] http://lists.openstreetmap.org/pipermail/talk/2012-July/063420.html

On 03/22/2012 02:15 AM, Tim Alder wrote:
for the schedule I would prefer to define a fixture time-span off let's say 2 weeks so we are able to calculate. We can than also say to the people that the updating for tools like WIWOSM we work again after this time. In my eyes it's not so important to present a perfect map, we should present an actual representation of OSM.

Greetings Kolossos

Am 21.03.2012 01:19, schrieb Kai Krueger:
Hello everyone,

as many of you will already know, OpenStreetMap has been planning to
change its license from CC-BY-SA 2.0 to OdBL 1.0 for a long time now
(several years). It appears that the date of the actual change is now
approaching fast and that the intended plan[3] suggests that the change
will begin on the 27th of March and be complete by the 1st of April.

As, unlike Wikipedia, with its change to CC-BY-SA, OSM so far has not
had a clause in the license to switch to a different license, it had to
independently and separately ask all of its contributors to relicense
their data to the new license.

In a project with more than 200.000 contributors reaching all of them
and getting them to agree to a new license is an (near) impossible task.
Therefore despite OSM(F)'s best effort to reach as many mappers as
possible, obviously not all could be reached and convinced to agree.

As OSMF does not hold the copyright (the individual mappers do), it can
only re-license the content for which it has permission and has to
delete all other data.

Worldwide currently 2% - 3% of data are affected[1], but for some
regions or countries 10% or more of data have to be deleted.

The question for Wikipedia (in the sense of the maps rendered on the
toolserver and embedded in a number of language wikipedia's) now is how
to handle the license transition?

My suggestion is to freeze the toolserver's openstreetmap database on
the 27th and stop all data updates for now. After the dust settles on
the license change and the impact of the deleted data become more
apparent, one can reevaluate the situation and decide at what point the
missing updates are worth more than the deleted data. At that point a
fresh import of the OSM database would be necessary after which the
updates can resume. My guess would be that it would take a few weeks or
perhaps month for the most visible damage to the data to be fixed, but
it is very hard to predict this so far. An overview of the current
situation can be seen on cleanmap [2], which shows either what the map
will look like after the license change, or on badmap which data needs
to be removed or modified before the license change.

After the re-import, it will also require a slight adaptation of the
attribution to reflect the license change to OdBL. The tiles (which are
embedded in Wikipedia) I believe can still be published under CC-BY-SA
(it is only the data that is under OdBL, not the produced work) and I
don't think it will directly impact (or prevent) any of the current
other usage of OpenStreetMap data in Wikipedia. However, I don't know if
the Wikimedia legal council has or wants to say anything about it and /
or give its OK for continued inclusion?

What do others think? How should the OSM license change and the
resulting removal of data from its database be handled in Wikipedia? Do
people agree with the above suggestion? Does it have any other
consequences? Further thoughts?


[1] http://odbl.poole.ch/
[2] http://cleanmap.poole.ch/
[3] http://www.osmfoundation.org/wiki/License/Rebuild_Plan
[4] http://www.osmfoundation.org/wiki/License/About_The_License_Change

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