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The #GeospatialCommission has published a list of 300 or so datasets it says are used during the housing and planning process, and highlights in particular a list of 50, "49 of which are covered by OGL".… #Geo6 #ukhousing #geospatial #opendata (or not)

The GC's list includes some useful datasets, but also quite a few errors. The effect is to overstate the number of #opendata resources that are readily available for the purposes of housing and planning in the UK.

I'll just run through some of the licensing issues …

Land Registry's INSPIRE Index Polygons are not re-usable under the Open Government Licence in any meaningful sense, because use of the polygons is subject to additional Ordnance Survey terms.… +… #deriveddata not-#opendata

Land Registry's Price Paid Data is also not re-usable under OGL, because use of data in the address fields requires a PAF licence from Royal Mail. ONS stats derived from PPD are open but the transaction-level data has little utility without addresses.…

Listed Buildings, and the other five Historic England datasets on the GC's long-list, are not covered by OGL. Historic England continues to apply a bespoke licence (derived from a defunct OS licence, itself adapted from the non-conformant OGL v1).…

From information at the link provided it is not clear that the BGS National Landslide Database is available either under OGL or as #opendata.…

(There is WMS access under OGL, but WMS is only a picture of the data.)

Only part of the Energy Performance Certificates dataset is covered by OGL. As with Price Paid Data, use of data in the address fields is restricted by Royal Mail.

(Arguably this is less fatal to the utility of the EPC bulk data than it is to PPD.)

According to the GC's list some of the National Grid datasets are covered by an open licence. Good news if true. However, while the datasets are available for download, I can't see any terms for open re-use.… +…

The long-list of over 300 datasets has some puzzling entries – almost half of the entries have no links to further information, so it's not always clear which data the GC means. (What is NHS's "Public Health" dataset, for example?)…

The GC lists 26 Coal Authority datasets as OGL. However only two of those appear as available under OGL in CA's own data catalogue.…

Other CA data is "available to view" under OGL but for purposes of re-use that's meaningless.…

The GC lists two Canal & River Trust datasets as "Other Licence - Open". However CRT's licence is not open – it excludes re-use for commercial purposes.…

Fun fact: those datasets were #opendata before the privatisation of British Waterways in 2012.

On the other hand the two National Trust datasets listed by the GC as "Other Licence - Open" are actually covered by the Open Government Licence.… +…

Technically anyone can use the OGL; you don't have to be a government body.

It doesn't seem quite correct to list the licence for Ordnance Survey's many non-open data products as "PSGA". That data may be available to public bodies under the Public Sector Geospatial Agreement, but other terms apply to commercial use (including by public bodies).

Conceptually I think this list is a good idea. It just needs iterating further, with more metadata to fill the gaps.

It's almost like Cabinet Office is circling back to the data inventories and "national information infrastructure" work it never quite finished in 2013-15.

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