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Re: CC Version 4.0 (and government data)

From: Bernadette Hyland <bhyland@3roundstones.com>
Date: Mon, 9 Jul 2012 17:29:50 -0400
Cc: "public-lod@w3.org" <public-lod@w3.org>, "public-egov-ig@w3.org" <public-egov-ig@w3.org>, "chris@codex.net.au" <chris@codex.net.au>, "sandro@w3.org" <sandro@w3.org>
Message-Id: <BD5A4173-46C2-4BD5-8BF7-F10CBE3C8774@3roundstones.com>
To: Anne Fitzgerald <am.fitzgerald@qut.edu.au>
Hi Anne,
As always, you are thorough!  Thank you for the detail on CC licenses for use by governments.  It is a topic that requires expertise that few can provide and therefore it only makes sense to leverage the excellent work you all have done. 

The URLs and some description, with proper attribution of course, will be folded in the the Gov Linked Data Working Group's forthcoming Best Practices deliverable.  Thanks again and I'm so glad you are part of this effort.


Bernadette Hyland, co-chair 
W3C Government Linked Data Working Group
Charter: http://www.w3.org/2011/gld/

On Jul 5, 2012, at 9:47 PM, Anne Fitzgerald wrote:

> Hi all
> I thought it might be useful to post some clarifications on the points raised by Chris Beer in comments posted on 12 December 2011.
> (1)The version 3.0 CC Australia licences ARE suitable for use on copyright-protected datasets, data compilations and databases.  If the dataset is not copyright-protected, the CC licences (which are based on the rights held by copyright owners) are unsuitable.  While copyright does not apply to mere facts or unoriginal data collections, there are many datasets, data compilations and databases that will qualify for copyright under the tests set out by the Australian courts in cases decided in 2010 and 2011.  A summary of the position is contained in my chapter (“Copyright”) in the recently-published book “Australian Media Law” 4th ed, Thomson Reuters, November 2011 or in our Guide “CC and Government” – available here:http://eprints.qut.edu.au/38364/
> (2)CC licences are in fact being widely used on datasets and data collections by government agencies and educational and research institutions around Australia, ranging from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (www.abs.gov.au) and Geoscience Australia (www.ga.gov.au) at the federal government level, through to the Queensland Police Service (http://www.police.qld.gov.au/copyright.htm) and Brisbane City Council (http://data.brisbane.qld.gov.au/). The most widely used licence for data is CC BY.  (Please note that CC 0 is not used in Australia as it is not legally effective; all these government agencies are using CC BY as the default.)
> (3)Based on wide-ranging consultations and feedback over the last several years, there is little interest in other, more complex licences such as ODbL.  Reasons for this are that Australia does not recognise sui generis database rights and there is no discernible advocacy in favour of extending statutory database rights to factual data collections that are not sufficiently original to warrant copyright protection.  In the absence of a statutory database right, protection of non-copyright data collections would require parties to enter into a contractual arrangement to firstly, describe their respective rights and obligations and, secondly, to set out the consequences of breach of those obligations.
> (4)The Australian legal position with respect to copyright in datasets, data compilations and databases is appropriately dealt with in the CC version 3.0 Australia licences.  The revisions in version 4.0 are primarily directed at addressing the situation in Europe (and a few other countries, such as Korea) which recognise sui generis database rights; version 3.0 is based on copyright interests but does not deal with the licensing of database rights that may exist in the same material to which the CC licence is applied.
> (5) There has been little interest in Australia in the development of licences based on rights (such as sui generis database rights) that do not exist under Australian law.  As the Creative Commons licences (up to and including version 3.0) have been “ported” so they are effective under the laws existing in individual jurisdictions (countries) where the licence is applied, unless and until a truly “international” licence is developed it is inappropriate to include mention – and even more inappropriate to purport to grant a licence - of rights that are not recognised at all under that country’s laws.  In countries which do recognise sui generis database rights there has, of course, been extensive consideration of the rights and their operation has been examined in several important cases in the UK and Europe in recent years.
> (6)There is now considerable experience with using CC licences in the Australian public sector as well as in education and publicly funded research.  This is also increasingly the case worldwide as national and local authorities develop data.gov portals, to which CC BY licences are applied.  Some examples of government and educational/research use of CC licences can be found here:http://creativecommons.org.au/sectors/government; see also the examples in our various presentations here: http://www.aupsi.org/presentations/ and here: http://www.aupsi.org/policy/nationalworkshop.jsp   
> (7)Importantly, the recommendations of the Government 2.0 Taskforce in its report “Engage: Getting on with Government 2.0” (December 2009) (http://www.finance.gov.au/publications/gov20taskforcereport/index.html) that the CC BY standard should be the default licence applied to all public sector information was formally accepted by the Australian federal government in 2010 (seehttp://www.finance.gov.au/publications/govresponse20report/index.html ) and has been given effect in the Australian government’s revised Intellectual Property Principles (October 2010) (http://www.ag.gov.au/www/agd/agd.nsf/Page/Copyright_CommonwealthCopyrightAdministration_StatementofIPPrinciplesforAustralianGovernmentAgencies ).  While federal government agencies may – and do – adopt more restrictive licences in certain circumstances, the reality is that CC BY is the default and, where more restrictive licences are applied, they are typically one of the other licences in the CC version 3.0 suite. An example of this is the Australian Parliament House website – the site and all contents are, unless otherwise indicated, licensed under the CC BY NC ND licence:http://www.aph.gov.au/  
> Please do not hesitate to contact me for further information.  Our team, based at QUT Law Faculty in Brisbane, introduced CC into Australia and we have worked closely with government, education and research sectors, as well as the creative industries since 2005 to develop models for use of CC.  We have consulted widely throughout Australia over the last 2 years to obtain a picture of who is using CC and to better understand barriers to the implementation of the licences. 
> Regards
> Anne
> Professor Anne Fitzgerald
> QUT Law Faculty
> Am.fitzgerald@qut.edu.au
Received on Monday, 9 July 2012 21:30:22 UTC

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