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Re: [dxwg] Is one of dcat:accessURL, dcat:accessService and dcat:downloadURL required in a dcat:Distribution? (#1197)

From: Riccardo Albertoni via GitHub <sysbot+gh@w3.org>
Date: Wed, 18 Dec 2019 18:38:50 +0000
To: public-dxwg-wg@w3.org
Message-ID: <issue_comment.created-567157502-1576694328-sysbot+gh@w3.org>
Hi @nfreire and @aisaac,

> Hello DXWG,
> At Europeana, we are designing a profile where we need to use the class dcat:Distribution without using any of the three properties dcat:accessURL, dcat:accessService and dcat:downloadURL.

I  admit I have some problems imagining the use case.  What do these distributions represent?

> The dcat:Distribution states in the last paragraph of section 6.7:
> > Links between a dcat:Distribution and services or Web addresses where it can be accessed are expressed using dcat:accessURL, dcat:accessService, dcat:downloadURL, as shown in Figure 1 and described in the definitions below.
> In the usage notes for these three properties, it is writen:
> > dcat:accessService SHOULD be used to link to a description of a dcat:DataService that can provide access to this distribution.
> > dcat:accessURL SHOULD be used for the URL of a service or location that can provide access to this distribution, typically through a Web form, query or API call.
> > dcat:downloadURL SHOULD be used for the URL at which this distribution is available directly,
> Many thanks in advance.

Your use of dcat:Distribution is not the classic intended case, but in general, I like to take a liberal interpretation where "anything is possible unless not explicitly forbidden".
In this case, I do not remember an explicit prohibition, but other editors/contributors might recall otherwise here. 

 I have reported their [bcp 14](https://tools.ietf.org/html/bcp14) definitions below,  as I think the difference between "MUST" and "SHOULD"   helps, 

1. **MUST**   This word, or the terms "REQUIRED" or "SHALL", mean that the definition is an absolute requirement of the specification.
3. **SHOULD**   This word, or the adjective "RECOMMENDED", mean that there may exist valid reasons in particular circumstances to ignore a particular item, **but the full implications must be understood and carefully weighed before choosing a different course.**

In this spirit,  I think you can use the dcat:distribution without the properties above provided that
 (i) you are not  "reinventing" a solution for a use case we have already solved differently;
 (ii) you are not using other properties in place of those suggested by DCAT to say what you would have featured with the original DCAT properties.

I hope this general consideration is helpful. If it is not, I am afraid that we need further info about your specific case to frame the reply more.

GitHub Notification of comment by riccardoAlbertoni
Please view or discuss this issue at https://github.com/w3c/dxwg/issues/1197#issuecomment-567157502 using your GitHub account
Received on Wednesday, 18 December 2019 18:38:51 UTC

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