[odc-discuss] Licensing of produced works from an ODbL database

Anthony osm at inbox.org
Sun Nov 4 21:21:11 UTC 2012

On Sun, Nov 4, 2012 at 3:36 PM, Robert Whittaker (ODC lists) <
robert.whittaker+odc at gmail.com> wrote:

> On 2 November 2012 19:05, Anthony <osm at inbox.org> wrote:
> > The rules apply if you "publicly use" a produced work.  It need not be a
> > produced work which you created.
> >
> > Understanding this distinction should answer your other questions.
> That's an interesting way of looking at things, and one that hadn't
> occurred to me before, so thanks for that. However, I'm struggling to
> get my head round some of the consequences of this...
> Presumably you can't be expected to be bound by a license that you
> never agreed to (albeit perhaps implicitly) so if you are given a
> produced work from an ODbL database and if the author somehow gives
> you the rights to (re-)use it publicly, then the author would need to
> specify that such uses can only be done under the terms of the ODbL.

A license is, by definition, a grant of permission to do something.  If you
don't accept the license, then your rights are limited to the exceptions to
database right / copyright which are granted by law.  (And ODbL doesn't
affect those rights anyway - see section 6.1.)

1) Surely there should be something in the ODbL to make it clear that
> the author of the original produced work has to do this, and I'm not
> sure that's the case at present.

Maybe.  Personally I don't care enough about that, one way or the other, to
comment on it.

> The ODbL license seems to be saying
> "you can do what you like, as long as the follow all the
> requirements". As far as I can see, the author could follow all the
> requirements and not tell the receiver of any produced work that they
> can only re-use it publicly under the terms of the ODbL

The person distributing the produced work is required to include a notice
that the work "Contains information from DATABASE NAME, which is made
available here under the Open Database License (ODbL)."

Seems pretty clear to me.

> 2) Under this interpretation, wouldn't it be impossible to give away a
> produced work under (say) CC-By?


CC-BY (2.0, and 3.0 Unported) is a copyright license.  It doesn't affect
database rights.  So if the Produced Work is subject only to database
rights, and not copyright, then you can definitely license the Produced
Work under CC-BY.

(For (2) is there maybe some argument about CC-By licensing
> copyrights, while the ODbL provides additional
> obligations/restrictions based on database rights? Even so, it's
> somewhat misleading to give someone something under CC-By if there are
> additional obligations from some other license they have to comply
> with too.)

I agree that it's misleading.
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