With much build up, the new OS INSPIRE licences have been released. So, what do we think?
Well not a lot really.
The whole idea of INSPIRE was to make it easier for government organisations and their associated supporting bodies and contractors to understand the environment through better access to data. This would require:
- A directory – We have Data.Gov.uk and it’s actually a very good site
- A list of datasets to share – Nearly there but not quite
- The rights to share – This is where the new contracts completely miss
If I were to sit in my backroom on a Saturday night and idly wonder what land was being used for commercial development in Scunthorpe, then the new Public Sector End User Licence – INSPIRE would be perfect. It now has click to agree terms so I can quickly connect to a WFS and revel in this new access to data. If, however, I were to go to work on Monday and try to use this information to help Scunthorpe of its surrounding area then this licence is of no use. It is for exclusively:
“personal, non-commercial use only (for the avoidance of doubt,
this excludes use by you internally within your business).”
So we are back where we always have been. If you are a body that INSPIRE was designed for and you go to Data.Gov.uk to access OS derived data you must fulfill one of the following:
- Be a PSMA member and provide adequate proof to the Licensor that you are so
- Be a contractor and have a Contractor Licence in place
- Have a current licence to the underlying data in place and be able to prove this to the Licensor
None of these requirements are particularly practical. Our DataPublisher service has a great capability to enable this licensing information to be exchanged but I must say that I really wish we hadn’t have had to build it.