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Publishing your information - public sector

Discover how your Member Licence lets you publish your information to support your public sector work.

Your Public Sector Geospatial Agreement (PSGA) Member Licence gives you rights to use and publish OS data when you wish to enhance your information and make it publicly available to an end user.

You can use data publishing, print publishing, digital publishing or web publishing - whichever suits your purpose best. The approach is the same for internal and external publishing.

You will be the data publisher so it is in your best interests to decide the best way that users will interact with your publication to meet your business needs.

The main things to think about when planning to publish your mapping are:

  • Your intended audience and what you want them to do in response to your publication. For example:
    • Are you just publishing information on the internet that anyone can access?
    • Is it for specific service enquiries which requires users to have a 'log in' facility?
    • Is it to generate a more detailed interaction with staff?
    • Is it to provide access to other organisations via a 'log in'?
  • Its purpose – you are clearly providing information that supports your core business use.
  • The primary focus is on your information, not OS mapping. That just happens to be the way you want to give context to your information.
  • You should only include an area of mapping at a scale necessary to get your message across.
  • It is clear to anyone using the publication that it is only available to inform them about something connected with you. Your use of appropriate licensing, trademarks, acknowledgements and watermarking must make it clear that it cannot be re-used for some other purpose.
  • Understanding whether your publication is going to include other information from someone who may also have a copyright interest. If it does, you need to get permission to publish from that copyright owner.
  • Deciding what form your publication will take because we ask you to protect OS intellectual property rights (IPR) and interests as a condition of your member licence. This varies with the publication method.
  • Whether or not you intend to have paid-for advertising in your publication.

Print publishing

You can publish your information with contextual OS mapping on paper, card or other similar material. You only need to ensure that:

  • The document can be identified as your publication.
  • The appropriate statement of purpose (i.e. why it's being produced) is clear.
  • Relevant acknowledgements are clearly visible and in line with our guidance.

Digital publishing

You can publish electronic documents, such as scanned images, PDFs or emails, that replace or replicate printed documents and your method of publication.

You only need to ensure that:

  • The e-document can be identified as your publication.
  • The appropriate statement of purpose (i.e. why it's being produced) is clear.
  • Relevant acknowledgements are clearly visible and in line with our guidance.
  • Your document cannot be edited, manipulated or customised in any way
  • Your document:
    • Cannot be interrogated. For example, to extract feature attribution etc.
    • Must not be geo-referenced. For example including OS National Grid or latitude and longitude co-ordinates
    • Cannot be used within any geographical information system (GIS), comparable database or software system.

Web publishing

You can allow your users to view the data on a website, either as static images or through using web mapping services, when:

We understand that you may be using third-party solutions, including cloud services, in a number of ways. For example:

  • Linking through to your own servers.
  • Leasing space from a third-party supplier (under some form of contract which will have service levels attached) as part of your network.
  • Using a separate hosted service.

Publishing data products

You can publish OS data products or data you have created from OS products (derived data). As well as the general rules above, you must follow the specific rules here:

  • You must use the ‘click-to-accept’ End User Licence (EUL), making it clear that any data you publish is subject to its terms. This will cover most circumstances.
  • You must watermark the data in line with our watermarking guidance.
  • You must monitor what an end user is doing with the data to assure yourself it is being used for the purpose you published it.

You do not use the EUL when you are publishing:

  • One or more of your derived datasets that you need to make available under the INSPIRE Directive. You should use the INSPIRE End User Licence instead.
  • OS OpenData, any of your exempted derived data or any derived data notified to OS under the Presumption to Publish process. You just need to use the Open Government Licence (OGL) instead. We simply ask that you acknowledge us with "Contains OS data © Crown Copyright [and database right] (year)".

FAQs about INSPIRE publishing