We’re using the Open Government Licence to encourage greater use of OS OpenData products

As part of ongoing moves to make our data even more accessible and easier for start-ups and others to understand and use, we are pleased to announce that following close work with The National Archives we have now adopted the Open Government Licence (OGL) version 3.0 in place of our OS OpenData licence.

We were delighted to work with the The National Archives throughout 2014, in helping form this new version of the OGL, and were enthusiastic throughout to explain and navigate through previous sticking points that had prevented us from adopting the OGL in its entirety in the past. In particular, one of these sticking points concerned the issue of sublicensing and giving greater clarity as to the applicability of OGL terms to sublicensees, a matter that has been addressed in this new version of the OGL. 

It is our belief that by having just the one licence, the OGL, to be agreed and adhered to, the process from now on for everyone using OS OpenData will be simplified. The existence of two similar licences has been a source of irritation to the open developer community and our adoption of the OGL will be a positive move for this community that we hope will encourage even more individuals and businesses to start exploring and finding new uses for our OS OpenData.

This new version of the OGL was launched on 31 October 2014. The OGL is part of the UK Government Licensing Framework, which was launched in 2010. The OGL permits the use and re-use of a wide range of government and other public sector information and supports the government’s policy on transparency and open data.

It continues to:

  • permit use and re-use of information in any format for both commercial and non-commercial purposes without charge
  • require re-users to publish an acknowledgment of the source of the information
  • exclude personal information from the licence
  • be compatible with other licensing models, such as Creative Commons, and is Open Definition conformant

You can find out more about OS OpenData and download products on our website.

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2 Responses

  1. Ed Loach

    Does this change affect currently available downloads which still show OS OpenData Licence on the website, or will it take effect from the next update for each product?

    1. Hi Ed

      Apologies for the delay in replying. Just checked with the Licensing team and they’ve advised that where a product is still active/live you will need to update your records to reflect the move to OGL, but if it’s a printed product you would only need to make the amendments to future reproductions.

      Hope this helps.

      Thanks, Gemma

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