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Re: There's No Money in Linked Data

From: Sören Auer <auer@informatik.uni-leipzig.de>
Date: Sat, 01 Jun 2013 20:25:53 +0200
Message-ID: <51AA3CB1.1070203@informatik.uni-leipzig.de>
To: semantic-web@w3.org
Am 01.06.2013 19:46, schrieb Pascal Hitzler:
> 
> 
> On 6/1/2013 1:17 PM, Sören Auer wrote:
>> Am 01.06.2013 18:58, schrieb Pascal Hitzler:
>>> Concerning the definition given on the website you indicate:
>>>
>>> "A piece of data or content is open if anyone is free to use, reuse, and
>>> redistribute it — subject only, at most, to the requirement to attribute
>>> and/or share-alike."
>>>
>>> - let me play devil's advocate here and suggest an alternative
>>> definition, just to make a point:
>>>
>>> "A piece of data or content is open if anyone is free to use, reuse, and
>>> redistribute it — subject only, at most, to the requirement to attribute
>>> and/or share-alike, or to paying suitable royalties to the data creator
>>> or provider."
>>>
>>> But more seriously - you probably see the point: A phrasing like
>>>
>>> "A piece of data or content is open if anyone is free to use, reuse, and
>>> redistribute it — subject to no restrictions"
>>>
>>> would be a more serious alternative. As soon as you make restrictions,
>>> things get tricky - and this is exactly one of the points in the paper
>>> we circulated. Attribution or share-alike can already be showstoppers,
>>> and for some context can render LOD/LD *non-reusable* - in which case
>>> the term "open" appears to be rather misleading.
>>
>> Sure, requirements like "attribution" and "share-alike" are showstoppers
>> for *some* business models, but definitely not for data-driven
>> businesses in general.
>>
>> Let's always look at the open-source analog (they are a few years ahead
>> of us): Most open-source licenses require attribution and quite some
>> prominent ones (such as GPL) also sharing-alike and still open-source
>> software is big business (look at Red Hat, the 1Bn open-source business
>> IBM makes every year with Linux alone or all the OS software used and
>> produced by Internet and Web giants).
>>
>> The share-alike requirement actually has two sides, it can prevent some
>> business from reusing the data, but also gives the original data
>> publisher a competitive advantage, since he can dual license his data
>> commercially without the share-alike requirement, so I think it is at
>> least as much a business facilitator as it is a showstopper.
> 
> Yes. But what you say confirms my argument that "open" is not so boolean
> in meaning :)

Maybe this now gets a little too philosophical for the SW list. I think
there are not many things of practical relevance, which are purely
boolean. The advancement of science in the last century (beginning with
Einsteins discovery of the theory of relativity) has shown, that almost
every paradigm is only valid in a certain context.

Nevertheless, the border and implications of being "open" (according to
the open definition) are from my POV pretty clear: If you can easily
get, use, change/mix, and republish something (even commercially) its
"open". Openness does, however, not require the original publisher to
give up his right to be acknowledged as such (attribution).

If you want *ultimate freedom* without any limitations whatsoever, than
*public domain* (German gemeinfrei) is what you are looking for. And I
know there is an ongoing debate about the balancing of freedom and
reserving some rights. Anyway, as the open-source example shows us
(where exactly the same debate exists/existed), that this does not
prevent the emergence of a sustainable business ecosystem.

Sören
Received on Saturday, 1 June 2013 18:26:22 UTC

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