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Re: There's No Money in Linked Data

From: Pascal Hitzler <pascal.hitzler@wright.edu>
Date: Sat, 1 Jun 2013 10:42:32 -0400
Message-ID: <51AA0858.9040201@wright.edu>
To: Tim Berners-Lee <timbl@w3.org>
CC: SW-forum Web <semantic-web@w3.org>
Dear Tim,

I'm sure there will be an update of our write-up, considering all the 
feedback we received.

Concerning the "Open" issue:

I'm guilty of not always being clear about the destinction between LD 
and LOD. In fact I believe many people are not clear about it. We should 
ask why they are not. And in fact our little write-up exposes one 
probably reason: The notion simply is rather unclear. "Linked Open Data 
must have an open licence" is - in the light of the analysis in the 
paper - almost meaningless, as "openness" of licences is not a boolean. 
There are many shades to it, and most of these shades do not allow 
readily for commercialization.

Concerning the title issue:

I agree the choice of title is provocative and probably "unacademic". 
The colloquial language used in the paper is also "unacademic". However, 
as the main purpose of the write-up is to stimulate discussion on the 
topic - the title serves this purpose very well I think. However, I 
admit I rather like your laternative suggestions :)

Best Regards,


On 5/23/2013 10:09 AM, Tim Berners-Lee wrote:
> (not sure why this, which I wrote ages ago, is sitting again
> in a window on my computer. Apologies if it was already sent before!).
> Short version: Please change LD to LOD throughout.
> A little while ago,  when we had made the 5* linked data  mug,
> http://www.w3.org/DesignIssues/diagrams/lod/480759174v0_350x350_Back.jpg
> I got a valid objection to it from the people doing
> for example enterprise linked data that their client's
> data was generally extremely confidential and no way
> would it be open, and the 5 star principle were really
> valuable for interoperability, but the clients were scared
> off by the fact that they could not even get one star without being open.
> So that led to a big change, and more careful wording
> and a (then) new mug.
> http://www.w3.org/DesignIssues/diagrams/lod/597992118v2_350x350_Back.jpg
>   The new mug has in black, the Linked Data story, and in green, stamped on
> "OPEN"  to make the "Linked Data" become "Linked Open Data",
> and also in green "Open Licence" added to the requirements for the first star.
> So the mug works two ways.
> Without the green, it is about Linked Data (LD).
>   If you include the green (e.g. wearing rose-coloured spectacles)
> it becomes a recipe for Linked Open Data (LOD).
> To have even 1 star, Linked Open Data must have an open licence.
> other wise it is not Linked Open Data at all.
> Meanwhile, 5* linked data (like my financial data
> for my taxes) can be completely private.
> The ability to discuss the different star levels of
> Linked Data is important too.
> This distinction has been really important
> to a lot of people's understanding and to the
> businesses in the space.
> So when your article is ONLY about the openness,
> about the need for linked Open data to be open,
> it is a big problem that you use the wrong term!
> There is lots of money in Enterprise Application Integration
> which is not what you are doing.
> I would ask you to update the paper.
> I strongly suggest you update the PDFs you have in place with
> a back-link to the original.
> Please edit the paper and basically put "Linked Open Data" and  LOD wherever you are
> talking about it, not "Linked Data" and LD.
> Because the points that you make are generally important
> and interesting and I'd like to be able to point to the paper.
> I have other comments about the actual content, but
> this is more important.
> The title... must be something more appropriate
> "Commercial use of Linked Open Data stymied by Licence Issues"
> "LOD re-use plagued by lack of suitable licence"
> "Viral or missing licenses hamper LOD uptake"
> ... or something....
> Thanking you in advance.
> Tim
> On 2013-05 -17, at 22:13, Pascal Hitzler wrote:
>> We just finished a piece indicating serious legal issues regarding the commercialization of Linked Data - this may be of general interest, hence the post. We hope to stimulate discussions on this issue (hence the provokative title).
>> Available from
>> http://knoesis.wright.edu/faculty/pascal/pub/nomoneylod.pdf
>> Abstract.
>> Linked Data (LD) has been an active research area for more than 6 years and many aspects about publishing, retrieving, linking, and cleaning Linked Data have been investigated. There seems to be a broad and general agreement that in principle LD datasets can be very useful for solving a wide variety of problems ranging from practical industrial analytics to highly specific research problems. Having these notions in mind, we started exploring the use of notable LD datasets such as DBpedia, Freebase, Geonames and others for a commercial application. However, it turns out that using these datasets in realistic settings is not always easy. Surprisingly, in many cases the underlying issues are not technical but legal barriers erected by the LD data publishers. In this paper we argue that these barriers are often not justified, detrimental to both data publishers and users, and are often built without much consideration of their consequences.
>> Authors:
>> Prateek Jain, Pascal Hitzler, Krzysztof Janowicz, Chitra Venkatramani
>> --
>> Prof. Dr. Pascal Hitzler
>> Kno.e.sis Center, Wright State University, Dayton, OH
>> pascal@pascal-hitzler.de   http://www.knoesis.org/pascal/
>> Semantic Web Textbook: http://www.semantic-web-book.org
>> Semantic Web Journal: http://www.semantic-web-journal.net

Prof. Dr. Pascal Hitzler
Kno.e.sis Center, Wright State University, Dayton, OH
pascal@pascal-hitzler.de   http://pascal-hitzler.de/
Semantic Web Textbook: http://www.semantic-web-book.org/
Semantic Web Journal: http://www.semantic-web-journal.net/
Received on Saturday, 1 June 2013 14:43:01 UTC

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