The Mad Phishmonger <>
Sent: 2/9/2001 1:55:43 PM

Re: [gpsstash] Re: public domain

Thus Spoke Eoghan:
> I don't think anyone has even suggested "copyrighting coordinates".
> There's a big difference between that and creating a proprietary
> database of public information. You can copyright dictionaries (but
> not common words), atlases (but not places), etc.
> --- In gpsstash@y..., Dave Seaton wrote:
> > released into the public domain.
> > Assuming the idea of copyrighting coordinates was sane in the first
> place,
> > you cannot copyright these because I have just placed them in the
> public
> > domain.

While Jeremy isn't copyrighting coordinates per se, he is trying
to maintain final control over the complete database he now
posesses. I agree, he probably is within his rights to
copyright the proprietary database he has worked so hard to
accumulate. But does that make it kosher (morally right)? The
data is available to all as it is. And is a
slick website which I would like to see up for many more years.
I just think trying to block your users from doing something
they could do anyway (mine for it's data) with empty legal
threats, instead of just giving them the functionality they
want quickly and easily, is a bad call. I don't forsee the
conflicts arising that you do in the different ways that the database can be made
public, just make it as generic as possible, comma seperated
would be perfect. Whether it is sectioned off by state, zip
code, or whatever makes no difference to anyone.
"We're living on the surface of a great big perpetual motion
machine and composed of godzillions of little tiny ones, so
shouldn't they be able to exist on our scale as well?"
--from "'Bob' and the Oxygen Wars"