"For Google's (not) a Jolly Good Fellow!"

Posted by morsa_paes on 12 March 2013 in English (English)

So, after taking into account some users feedback, I conclude that Google is not that jolly of a fellow, and so I won't be using Google Street Viewer any longer as a compass and leg stretcher. I'm glad I posted the earlier entry today, because I really wasn't aware of the legal boundaries involving OSM.

I'm keeping it 'clean', from now on. Thank you so much for your advice, OSM Jedi!

Comment from Richard on 12 March 2013 at 22:07

"not until yesterday, when a classmate reminded me of the existence of such feature, did I remember I could use it as a crutch to my mapping"

um, you can't. Like it says on the "Copyright & License" page to the left, "OSM contributors are reminded never to add data from any copyrighted sources (e.g. Google Maps or printed maps) without explicit permission from the copyright holders". Google haven't given us such permission.

Comment from morsa_paes on 12 March 2013 at 22:14

I'm not adding information from Google Maps, I'm just using Google Street Viewer to 'locate'. Instead of actually walking the streets, I walk them virtually. The editing is done solely based on my local knowledge!

Comment from robert on 12 March 2013 at 22:17

That's very dubious legal territory, and I'd like to remind you that OSM's legal fund is approximately $0.

Comment from morsa_paes on 12 March 2013 at 22:26

Is it less 'dubiously legal' if I take the train, pay 6€ and walk the street myself? I just use to tour around and spatial orientation. Sometimes, making out which building is which is rather difficult using Bing Sat. It becomes fairly easier if I get to see the actual façade of the rooftop I'm looking at. As far as I'm concerned, that doesn't violate any terms. I'm contributing with local knowledge of the areas, not copycatting Google's dated maps.

Comment from Richard on 12 March 2013 at 22:37

This has been hashed out a zillion times on the mailing lists and the consensus of the majority of the OpenStreetMap community is that we do not run the risk of copying from Google Street View.

There are plenty of reasons for this. Firstly, in Europe, where the OpenStreetMap servers are hosted, it is conceivable that Google's Street View imagery is protected by database rights. Secondly, Google's Terms of Service now expressly say that "you must not... use the Products to create a database of places or other local listings information", and OpenStreetMap is clearly a database of places. And so on.

Whether or not you think differently "as far as [you're] concerned" isn't the issue. OSM is not a place to test out legal theories. We have always played safe with legal interpretations: it simply isn't worth putting the world's best free geodatabase at risk. Please don't be the black sheep in the community.

Comment from richlv on 12 March 2013 at 22:44

just to clarify... everybody appreciates contributions, but we are very cautious about copyright. google does not play friendly with us - well, too bad, we have to do without them.

Comment from morsa_paes on 12 March 2013 at 22:45

I will put my virtual legs to rest, then. I didn't mean to be any sort of black sheep, I just wasn't aware that the legal boundaries where that rigid.

So thank you for clarifying me on that.

Comment from Richard on 12 March 2013 at 22:47

Thanks! :) And richlv's right - we love all our OSM contributors, that's why we want their contributions to stay in the database when the big guys bare their teeth at us.

Comment from morsa_paes on 12 March 2013 at 23:01

I appologize for being such a newbie. Good thing that OSM has such kind users who can quickly drive me away from falling into the dark side of the force!

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